Shallow – Lady Gaga (Oscar Awards 2019)


This is an ELT video and song activity based on Lady Gaga’s Acceptance Speech for Best Original Song at the 2019 Oscar Awards and also the performance of the winning song “Shallow”, by Bradley Cooper and Gaga herself, in which students talk about winning; find common ideas connecting those quotes about winning and the message in Gaga’s speech; watch the video and do a listening exercise, and finally, read the lyrics and find mistakes in verb forms.

Language level: Pre-Intermediate (B1) and above
Learner type: All ages
Skills: speaking, reading & listening
Topic: Winning
Language: Vocabulary related to winning, expressions to agree, disagree and express opinions
Materials:  Acceptance Speech video.mp4 , Acceptance Speech Worksheet, Shallow worksheet and Shallow performance youtube video
Duration: 1h –  1h 30 min

Downloadable materials:  instructions; Acceptance Speech video.mp4 , Acceptance Speech Worksheet, Shallow worksheet


Part 1. QUOTES

Warm-up. Ask students when the last time they won something was. Have students share they’re winning moments with the whole class

Step 1. Have students read the quotes below (project or write them on the board), choose their favorite and share their ideas with a partner. They have to explain their reasons. (give them 2 to 5 minutes)


  1. “When you win, say nothing. When you lose, say less.” Paul Brown
  2. “There are more important things in life than winning or losing a game.”Lionel Messi
  3. “The person that said winning isn’t everything, never won anything. Mia Hamm
  4. “You can’t win unless you learn how to lose.” Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
  5. “Winning isn’t getting ahead of others. It’s getting ahead of yourself.” Roger Staubach

Step 2. The pairs share their favorites with the whole class. Have a plenary discussion. Have a vote for the best quote. (optional)


Step 3. Tell them they are going to watch Lady Gaga winning the 2019 Oscar for Best Original Song. After watching it, ask them to work in small groups and discuss what she said about winning and which of the quotes is most similar to what she said in the video. Play the video again, if necessary.

Step 4. Have the groups share their conclusions, and check if they got to the same conclusion.

Part 3. LISTENING ACTIVITY (Acceptance Speech worksheet)

Step 5. Give out the Acceptance speech worksheet. Have the students listen to the video again and write down the missing parts. Play it 2x. Have them check in pairs. Them play the video one more time and pause at the gaps to check as a class.

Answer key: 1. Wonderful 2. Person  3. My sister 4.on the planet 5.believing 6. Hard work   7.Have a dream 8. Brave 9. Acts

Part 4: SONG ACTIVITY (video and lyrics)

Step 6. Tell students they are going to watch Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga’s performance of Shallow at the Oscars. Ask them what they understood about the meaning of the song.

Step 7. Give out the Shallow Worksheet. Tell students to read it find 5 wrong verbs in the lyrics. After some time, play the song so they can check.

Answer key:

1- Say - tell me somethin’ girl  2Or do you needs - need   3 - And in the bad times I fearing fear  4 - Aren’t you tired tryin’ to filled fill that void?  5 - I’ll never to meet the ground

That’s it for this week! I hope your students enjoy the activities!

Happy teaching! 🙂

Big Love – The Black Eyed Peas



This ELT song activity is based on the song Big Love (The Black Eyed Peas) and it does NOT make use of the official music video  (some scenes it portrays may be shocking for most students, however if you consider it suitable for any specific class you have, use it at your own discretion.) 

In the activity, students talk about bullying, gun control, smart phones and war, read and share opinions about those topics, listen to the song, do listening exercises with a worksheet and the lyrics, scan QR codes, read and write a text for homework,

Language level: intermediate (B2) and above

Learner type: All ages

Skills: speaking, listening, reading & writing

Topic: current controversial issues

Language: Vocabulary related to bullying, guns, smartphones and war, expressions to agree, disagree and express opinions

Materials: cut out opinion + topic sheet + song activity Worksheet – smartphones or other digital device (tablet, laptop, etc) with a qr code reader app installed. Internet connection, wifi available for part 3.

Duration: 1 hour  (or 1h and 30 min if you have time to do step 9 in class + HW)

Downloadable materials: Big Love- instructions; cut-out opinion/issue sheet; song worksheet; song audio mp3


Preparation for the activity:

Download and print the cut-out opinion/issue sheet; cut out as indicated and laminate it to make the sets. Make 1 copy per pair or trio of students.  Download and print the song worksheet. 1 per student.


Step 1.  Warm up – WHOLE CLASS:: Write/ project the following issues on the board:


Ask students if they think there is a connection between the four topics and what it is, or ask them which of the four is the most important for society right now and why. Have a vote and write the number of students in front of the issues on the board.  (about 5 minutes)

Step 2. IN PAIRS or TRIOS. Hand out the opinion+issue set, one for each pair/trio of students.

There are 4 pairs of opposite opinions for each of the four issues (bullying, gun control, war, smartphones).

The students’ task is to match the topics with their correspondent opinions.

Step 3. after the pairs or trios have finished matching the opinions and the topics, they are going to talk about the opinions they agree more or disagree and give their reasons. (about 10 minutes – step 1+ step 2)

Step 4. After discussing  in pairs/trios, the students share their opinions with the whole class and have  a short plenary discussion.


Step 5. Individual task. Hand out the song worksheet. It has two exercises: in exercise one, students have to listen to the song and number the verses, lines of the song as they listen to it.

Answer key exercise 1:   4   b. 2   c. 1 d. 3

Step 6. Individual task. In exercise 2 they have the complete lyrics of the song with 10 words removed. Their task is to listen to the song and fill in the blanks in the song lyrics with the words given.

Answer key exercise 2:  

  1. Leaders  2. Fire 3. Americans  4. Young 5. Hands 6. Hope  7. Life 8. Global  9. Believe 10. Violence

Step 7: Back to their original pairs/trios, the students identify which parts of the song in exercise 1 correspond to the issues they discussed in part 1 (bullying, gun control, war, smartphones) and what opinion the song expresses.

Step 8. They share their opinions with the whole class


OBS: If there is no time available in class, steps 9 and 10 can be done for homework and handed in the following class.

Step 9. Students choose the issue they want to read about, scan the correspondent QR code on their worksheet and read an article about that issue on Newsela. This is an excellent Instructional Content Platform that supercharges reading engagement and learning in every subject. Your students will be asked to make a profile there to read the whole article, it is free and fast.

blog song 2 codes

Urls for the articles





Step 10. Homework. Students write a paragraph or two with their opinion about the article they read in the previous step for the following class. (word limit 50 – 80 words)
That’s it for this week! I hope you enjoy this ELT song activity.

Feel free to leave some comments if you wish, and let me know how the activity worked out in your classes.

Happy teaching! 🙂