The “Not So” Glorious Life Of An Idol

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It’s no secret that a career in show business is not as easy as it seems to be and artists spend a lot of time working on their appearance, singing and dancing.
I figured that some dark facts about pop stars’ lives would make an interesting lesson which I would like to share with you.

Let’s go:

1. Start by asking your students some simple questions, like:

1) Do you prefer listening to music from your country or from abroad?

2) Which countries do you think make the best music?

3) Do you listen to music which is not in English and your native language? What do you listen to?

2. Break your students into 2 groups and have them make a list of the advantages and disadvantages of being a star. Ask them if there are more advantages than disadvantages.

3. Ask them if they’ve heard of K-Pop and what it means (If they haven’t, what they think it means). Tell them that they are going to watch a K-Pop song and ask them to share how they feel about the song. Students should now watch a K-Pop song (Or a part of it if you don’t have a lot of time), for example, BTS’s Idol:

4. Write down

Slavery
Prostitution
Plastic Surgery
Crazy Fans
Health problems
Racism
Lack of creative freedom

on the board and ask your students which problems they think Korean celebrities don’t have to deal with. Don’t confirm any answers yet.

5. Tell your students that they’re going to watch a short video and check their answers. Once they’re done watching it, ask them which fact surprised them the most. Get feedback from each student. You can ask the students that saw more advantages than disadvantages in being a star whether they still think so or if they would like to become a K-Pop star.

6. Give them multiple-choice questions to check their understanding of the video.

7. Give your students a set of questions and have them watch the video again to find the answers to them.

8. Have your students discuss the following questions in pairs:

1) Which is better for you: working 20 hours a day and being famous or working up to 8 hours a day on a regular job? Why?

2) Do you think these facts are exclusive to Korean artists or are they common in other countries too?

3) What are some crazy examples of fan worship you have heard of?

4) How popular is racism and stereotypes about people from other countries in your country?

5) Which stereotypes did you use to believe to about people from other countries?

6) What would you want to ask a K-Pop idol?

Get their ideas.

9. Elicit what euphemism means or just tell them that they’re polite expressions we use instead of words or phrases that otherwise might be considered harsh or unpleasant to hear. Have your students match the euphemisms in the exercise and then ask your students to give more examples of euphemisms in English or their native language.

10. Have your students create a story using the euphemisms from the exercise and their ideas. To make this even more fun, have each student write one sentence using a euphemism and pass it to the next one. Then, have them read the “stories” they got.

11. To finish the lesson, ask your students why they think K-Pop has become popular outside of Korea and whether they think that this success could be achieved in their country. Ask them to point out the similarities between US/UK Pop music and K-Pop and have them write them on the board. Ask them if they’d like to listen to K-Pop music in the future.

12. As a homework activity, you can have them write a fan e-mail to a K-Pop band where they share 3-5 things they liked about their new music video and read the e-mail on the next lesson.

I hope you enjoyed this lesson, if you have any suggestions on how to make it better, feel free to leave them in the comments below. 🙂

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