Esl lesson plan

A reading activity to do with your students interested in the Titanic

Reading activity

Activity in brief

Students learn to make prediction based on their knowledge of the Titanicand then they can see if their predictions were right by reading a text based on authentic material.

Skills: Reading, speaking

Level: Secondary 2 students (qu├ębec) (advanced beginner to intermediate)

Time of the activity: about 30minutes


-Acetates ( facultative)

-The text provided with this activity.


-Make the chart shown below on an acetate or on the board. You can use the suggested questions or make your own questions based on thetext.

-Have a blank acetate with you (or you can write on the board.)


-Ask students what they know about the Titanic. They will probably come with key words like :ship, sink, big... Write these words in sentences on the blank acetate or on the board.

-Then, take the chart and ask them the questions. Write their answers on the appropriate column.

While activity

-The students read the text provided. Don't forget to tell them that the text is in non chronological order.


When they're finished reading, in teams of two, students must put the text back in chronological order and also find the answers of the questions asked previously in the chart. Then, you place the text in chronological order so that students can correct themselves. Finally, they check the answers of the questions with you.

The chart (to be written on acetate or on the board)

Questions Answers

1-Where was the Titanic

leaving from

on April 10, 1912?

2-On what date did the

Titanic sink?

3-What did the Titanic


4-About how many passengers were

on the Titanic?

5-Where did the Titanic sank?

Student's worksheet

1-Read the text scene by scene. Notice that the scenes are not in chronological order.

Scene ____

The ship was now near of Nova Scotia. Suddenly, Frederich Fleet, one of six lookouts on board the Titanic, saw something in the distance: it was an iceberg. He warned Officer Murdock about this. The Titanic veered to the left in the last minute, but it was too late. The iceberg had scraped along the side of the ship.


Panic was now on the Titanic. All the passengers knew that the ship was sinking and everyone of them wnated a place in a lifeboat. Finally, at about 2:20 a.m. on April 15, 1912, the Titanic cracked in half. Then, as if the Titanic had never been there, the waters closed over it. Of the 2207 people aboard the Titanic, Approximately 700 were saved. All the others died in the waters of Nova Scotia.

Scene _____

The Titanic crew went in every cabin to tell the passengers that for security reasons all women and children must be assemble on deck in their lifejacket Even though the crew members tried not to raise panic among the passengers, everything changed in fifteen minutes. Everybody had to be on the deck with their lifejackets at once

Scene ____

On April 10, 1912, the Titanic was leaving on its first voyage from Belfast, Ireland to New-York City. The ship was the largest ever made so far. The White Star Ligne, which owned the Titanic, had said that its ship was unsinkable. Unfortunately, on April 14, 1912 something happened that would destroy 1502 lives. Here is what happened that night.


All through the Titanic, passengers were dressing for bed and everyone of them felt the collision. Captain Smith also felt the collision. He went on the deck and saw the extend of the damage. Water was getting on the ship in a terrible rate. Before they could try to repair it, they realized that they were sinking and that they had to save the passengers, women and children first.

Scene _____

The ship had never had a lifeboat drill, so most of the crew had no idea how to launch or load a lifeboat. Very few passengers seemed to understand that the ship was sinking and some of them didn't even one to get on the lifeboat. Finally, Captain Smith had to tell the passengers that lifeboats are their only hope. What he did not mention is that there were not enough lifeboats for the 2200 passengers.

2- Now, place all the scenes in chronological order. Check your answers with a classmate.

3- Find the answers of the questions asked by your teacher.

Other Places to go:

TEFL PITSTOP Free materials for teachers

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