Activity 4: Being Contemporary, Staying Relevant

Skill focus: Vocabulary development

Level: Undergraduate

Estimated time: 15-30 minutes

Group size: 6 students

Maximum students: 30

Learning objectives: To develop vocabulary in students that is useful to them in real life situations.

Materials: Five Advanced Learners’ Dictionaries (electronic/print), pamphlets, information brochures and user manuals of vehicles (preferably four-wheelers)


1.      Ask the learners to bring pamphlets, information brochures and user manuals of vehicles (four-wheelers), dictionaries (print/in mobile handsets) to the classroom.

2.      Get five Advanced Learners’ Dictionaries of different publishers from the college library.

3.      Carry out the following lead-in activities: Brands and models of Cars

          Lead-in activity A: Ask the students to match the following models of cars with their brand.

                        A                                B

                (i)     Swift                  (a)   Hyundai

                (ii)   Santro                (b)   Skoda

                (iii)  Verna                 (c)   Renault

                (iv)  Fiesta                 (d)   Ford

                (v)    Duster               (e)   Maruti Suzuki

4.      Divide the students into five groups.

5.      Ask the students to work in groups and complete the following table.

          Lead-in activity B:  Lexical set – Brands and Models





Maruti Suzuki






























6.      Distribute the following tasks among the groups. Give each group one Advanced Learners’ Dictionary.

          Task 1: British and American English vocabulary for parts of a car

          Observe the following picture and complete the table with the help of the dictionary.


British English

American English

Number plate

















          Task 2: Pronunciation of brand names of cars

          Transcribe the following words phonemically with the help of the dictionary (electronic/print).

          (a) Chevrolet             (b) Volkswagen                  (c)  Renault

          Task 3: Meanings of the names of the models

          Explain the meanings of the following words with the help of a dictionary.

          (a) Beetle                   (b) Gypsy                            (c) Swift 

          (d) Elantra  (e) Vista

          Task 4: Word-formation of the names of the models

          Identify the process of word-formation in the following words.

          (a) Innova                  (b) Winger                          (c) Quanto

          (d) Scorpio                (e) Captiva                          (f) Accent

          Task 5: Etymology of the names of the models

          Explain the origin of the following words with the help of a dictionary.

          (a) Aria                      (b) Indigo                            (c) Octavia

          (d) Celerio                 (e) Quanto

7.      Seek feedback on this activity from the students.

8.      Give homework for a similar activity related to bikes.

Ravindra B. Tasildar is Associate Professor at the Department of English and Post-Graduate Research Centre, S. N. Arts, D. J. M. Commerce and B. N. S. Science College (Sangamner). He has been teaching English language and literature to graduate and post-graduate students for the past twenty-two years.