Extensive reading is one of the most useful language learning activities students can do. However, to be useful, the students have to know 95 per cent of the words in the text. To achieve this, you either have to choose a really simple text or you have to pre-teach the vocabulary.
As there are not many simplified texts which can be used freely, I have decided to pre-teach all the words my intermediate students will need to understand the first chapter of the young readers’ edition of Black Beauty.
Black Beauty – vocabulary
Hand out the following mind map and ask your students to listen and repeat the words after you. If you teach a monolingual class, ask the students to translate the words and check their translations.
Then ask the students to remember the words. You can give them the mind map as homework and ask them to learn the words at home.
Students can practise the vocabulary in the following worksheet:
Black Beauty – free online reading
Now play the following video and ask the students to watch the story.
As the aim of extensive reading is to give students a chance to read just for fun, please do not produce any comprehension questions. If you want to check that the students have understood the story, ask them to retell it.