In this section of College English 3 we will improve your English listening ability by watching and discussing scenes from television comedies or dramas. We will not watch entire programs during the class. Class viewing will be limited to about 10 minutes of the program due to time constraints. However, I suggest that you watch the entire episode on your own before class.

I will prepare the first 2 videos that we watch in class, and groups of students will prepare the rest of the classes during the semester.

The student groups will be responsible for 12 Video classes along with 3 additional Discussion classes.

During the Video classes, your group is responsible for preparing a video for the class to watch and for leading a discussion about the class. You need to:

  1. Choose a program and get it approved by me.
  2. Watch the program and prepare a list of the vocabulary/idioms/cultural items that appear in the program. I strongly recommend that you use a program that has a transcript available. (See how I annotated the transcript for the Big Bang Theory episode that we watched.)
  3. Select passages to use for your listening activities. Prepare two kinds of listening activities. The first one will be comprehension questions. The second one will be to reconstruct and act out part of the text.
  4. Prepare discussion questions for the class.
  5. Prepare a homework assignment that will be done before the class and posted to the wiki.
  6. After you have prepared the transcript, activities, and assignment, meet with me to review your work.

On the day of your presentation:
  1. Make a brief introduction of the program.
  2. Play an excerpt of the program that is important for the listening activity.
  3. Lead the listening activities you prepared for the class.
  4. Lead the discussion activity that you prepared for the class. This should last about 30 minutes, which includes the discussion in small groups and feedback/sharing with the whole class.

For the discussion part of the class, pick a topic related to the episode that we watched in class. Your topic can be about something that happened during the program or an issue that was raised during the program. For example, you might discuss:

  • How the characters acted in a manner that was different from the way typical Taiwanese students would act.
  • Whether you would make the same choice/decision as a character in the program did.
  • Why you like or dislike the program.
  • Make up what you think will happen next.
  • What can you learn about some aspect of your life by watching the program.
  • Discuss a better way to resolve a problem that occurred during the program.

Here are some examples of questions that we might talk about after watching the pilot episode of the Big Bang Theory:

  • What kind of weird personality quirks do your roommates have?
  • Would you want your child to be a supergenius?
  • Explain Sheldon's view of astrology. What are his reasons for holding that belief? What is your opinion of astrology?