This Business English lesson plan on homeworking has been designed for business professionals or other adults and young adults at an intermediate (B1/B2) to advanced (C1/C2) level and should last around 45 to 60 minutes for one student.
Before the global coronavirus pandemic, homeworking was not an option for many workers due to suspicions of lazy days watching Netflix in bed instead of working. Now, all that has changed. The world has seen that homeworking works perfectly well and has numerous benefits for businesses. In this Business English lesson plan on homeworking, students will have the opportunity discuss and express their opinions on issues such as their experiences working from home, what the benefits of homeworking are for businesses and what problems people can have working at home.
This lesson could be taught in tandem with the lesson plan on remote working. Essentially, homeworking is a form of remote working, whereas remote working can be from any location. Homeworking is usually an option given to employees in the place of a physical office. Remote jobs might not have an office at all. (add to homeworking)
For advice on how to use this English lesson plan and other lesson plans on this site, see the guide for ESL teachers.
Before the English class, send the following article to the students and ask them to read it while making a list of any new vocabulary or phrases they find (explain any the students don’t understand in the class):
BBC | “Home working here to stay, study of businesses suggests”
The article talks about the intention of businesses to continue allowing their staff to work from home even after the Covid-19 pandemic has cleared. At the start of the class, hold a brief discussion about what the students thought about the article. What do they think about the issues raised in the article? Do they agree with what was written? Can they think of any ways they might disagree with the content of the article?
To save time in class, the English teacher can ask the students to watch the video below at home. In the class, the students will answer a number of conversation questions directly or indirectly related to the content of the video.
The video for this class is a TEDx Talk by Nicholas Bloom called “Go Ahead, Tell Your Boss You Are Working From Home” which talks about some of the stereotypes of working from home as well as the many benefits.
The focus in the class is on conversation in order to help improve students’ fluency and confidence when speaking in English as well as boosting their vocabulary.
This lesson opens with a short discussion about the article the students read before the class. Next, the students can give their opinion on the quote at the beginning of the lesson plan – what they think the quote means, if they agree with it and how it could relate to business. This is followed by an initial discussion on the topic including the differences between homeworking and office working and the students’ own experiences.
After this, students will learn some vocabulary connected with homeworking such as technical glitch, out of the loop and take a break. The vocabulary is accompanied by a cloze activity and a speaking activity to test the students’ comprehension of these words.
If the students didn’t watch the video before the class, they can watch it after the vocabulary section and answer the conversation questions. Before the conversation, ask the students to give a brief summary of the video and what they thought about the content.
Finally, there is a more in-depth conversation about working from home. In this speaking activity, students will talk about issues such as how students communicate with colleagues and clients, how homeworking can affect people’s health and what the future holds for working at home.
After the class, students will write a business case to their board of directors to explain the benefits of working from home. The writing activity is designed to allow students to practise business-style writing as well as improving their grammar with the feedback from their teacher.