Thursday, 21 July 2016

"BUYING & SELLING" : Survival English Activity

by Apep Wahyudin

“Buying and Selling” is a very common classroom activity in a conversation class. “Buying and Selling” is a part of “English for Survival” lessons. It is such a very important lesson that it is always taught in English courses. It has an equal importance with “Please, introduce yourself” lesson or “Introduce your friends to other” lesson or “Can you show me the way to ….?” lesson.

This lesson helps the students cope with a real life situation in which they are to face with the real buying and selling activity while they are abroad. This skill will certainly become a life skill for them—the skill to survive in another country where they have to use English.

Knowing how important it is, I decided myself to give this skill when coming to lesson 4 of Business Result Book for Pre-Intermediate students. The students who were introduced to this lesson were Staffs and echelons of Maluku Provincial Government.

Writing a brochure

The activity was designed for 4 hours divided into two sessions. The first session was “writing a shopping brochure”. The time allotted was 2 hours. They were group into groups of threes. We were lucky enough to have 15 students at that time, meaning that they could be grouped into five groups with an equal number of members in each group. They had to write a  shopping brochure which contains:

Ø  Name of company, or shop/store, or stand

Ø  A new product on the cover page (we name it “new launch product”); it has a complete detail information on the product like e.g. the name of the product, the price, the specifications, etc.

Ø  4 other products (we name them “ready stock product”) with simple description like the name of the product, the price, and a little information about each of the products.

Ø  The products may just be imaginary ones

The brochures may also be brochures of tour packages 
Shopping Brochures made by the students 

This activity will last in 1 hour. Every student should contribute his/her creativity to make the brochure like a real one. Teachers are supposed to provide paper and colorful markers to make the brochure colorful and beautiful.

The brochures they make may not merely be shopping brochures; they may also make brochures of tour packages (in this case, some students acting as tour agents and the rest acting as tourists who need information on tour packages). You can also ask your students to make brochures of courses or school; brochures of houses (some acting as housing complex agents and some acting as those people who need to buy a house), etc.

Selling the new products

Teachers are to give the students useful language for buying and selling activities but remember not to expose them too much with unnecessary expressions drill before the real conversation activity since they are not beginners; rather they are pre-intermediate students who have already some words and expressions they had learned much earlier before.

The students were asked to sit in a formation as it is described here:

Ø  They are to sit in their group first. Three students are given different roles. One of them will act as a sales representative/salesperson who is responsible to stay in his/her stand to introduce and sell their “new products”

Ø  Two of them will act as customers who will visit each stand and ask for information on “new products” offered in each stand

Ø  The “Salesperson (SPG)” will welcome the customers; invite them to sit and read the “shopping brochures” (they have made in session one). The salespersons are to tell and describe each product and ask if the customers interested in buying any of them

Ø  The salespersons are to “link and match” the products with the “needs” of the customers. They have to ask “What’s your hobby?” or “What do you do for a living?” to each customer. Then they have to link and match the products with the customers’ hobbies and jobs (The teacher should distribute papers containing “Jobs” to the students earlier. Each of the students then have their own “job” to tell the salesperson)

Ø  Do this activity in 12 minutes or so

Ø  Every 12 minute, the teacher will have to clap his/her hands to signal that the customers will have to move to another stand to follow the same activity. Do this until all customers have visited all STANDS

Ø  In the end, the whole groups are to choose the best of the best: The best salesperson and the best customers. The salesperson and the customers in each group may have to decide to choose the best salesperson and customers from other groups.

For example, take a look at the picture below:

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments system

Disqus Shortname