Business Angels or Elves?

I must share this great idea for your Business English class; we had so many laugh-out-loud outbursts, and the conversational part was so engaging! I’m going to make it brief and clear since this is what your busy students love, plus unconventional and effective, of course.

Bearing in mind those core business values, I highly recommend you to watch The Elves and the Shoemaker first (available also in British English here or in other languages on BookBox’s website) so that you get inspired by this unconventional lesson add-on straightaway!

Subject: Investors & Business Angels
Skills: Speaking, Listening

1. What kind of investments have you made recently? (private or professional)
2. What is an investor / Business Angel?
3. Do you think it’s a stressful occupation or a safe one as you only invest and wait for the results?

Tell your students they can forget about stress now and sit back as they’re going to watch a short story about ‘Business Angels.’ Write the following questions on the board and ask them to have a look before playing the video (stop at 3:16 min):

1. What qualities did our entrepreneur have?
2. What problem was he facing and what was he going to do?
3. What did he do with the fancy pair of shoes?
4. How did he invest the money he earned?

Let your students answer the questions or play The Elves and the Shoemaker again, pausing the video after each of the questions if necessary. If your students are A1-A2 level you might want to have the questions in Present Tenses instead, and/or use a multiple choice version, e.g.,

What qualities did our entrepreneur have?
– Kind and hard-working
– Hard-working but not kind
– Lazy but kind, etc.

Tell your students you’re going to play the rest of The Elves and the Shoemaker to meet the mysterious Business Angels and see if they nailed it ;). Then, throw in one or two teasers, such as:

Do you think the Business Angels are satisfied with their margin?

The rest is up to you as being the corporate teacher, and it is all about tailoring each of your class to your students’ particular needs, right? Just FYI, having played the rest of the video I went on to an article on a particular business angel, explained the vocabulary, and we all enjoyed our riveting discussion involving elves, fancy shoes and serious investments – what a rewarding class!

Until next time,



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Marta Styczen has turned her passion for languages and traveling into a daily routine as a is a foreign language teacher, educational content writer, translator, and backpacker. Her mission is to encourage people to enrich their lives through learning new languages and traveling, always inventing new techniques for faster learning and sharing them through her website (still under construction), and Facebook.


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