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QVC‏‎ – the Shopping Channel Activity

Screenshot of QVC at work.QVC is a tv shopping channel which is famous for showing short segments where presenters talk about a product for several minutes, describing it in detail and explaining everything one could possibly want to know about it.

The concept can be transferred to the English Language Teaching classroom.

Here students either individually or in small groups can do the same to practice fluency and presentation skills; ideally this should be for a class who are able to speak reasonably well already.

Introducing the Idea

Ask your class if they have seen the QVC channel and explain a little about what it is. You can show them short snippets of the channel from YouTube to see how the presenters explain and talk about different items. (QVC has their own YouTube channel here.)

Next, take out an item which you will try to “sell” to the class. This can be almost anything, but make it big enough so everyone can see it easily, for example a laptop or a smartphone or a camera, etc. Brainstorm with the class a few useful words and phrases to describe the item:

  • colorful
  • high quality
  • cutting edge
  • latest design
  • fashionable
  • new and improved

Once you have done this you can give your students an example on how this can be sold. Keep it brief, maybe 30 seconds, where you will explain what the item is, talk about the design and the special features it has and then the super low price!

The Class Speaks

Break the class into small groups. Give each a group an item to sell and let them have 5 or 10 minutes to prepare their own list of keywords and phrases. Stress that while the group as a whole will present the item, each person within that group should speak and be prepared to explain one or two features of the object.

Finally after preparation (where you as teacher go around and help out where necessary) each group gets a chance to present their item to the class. However, before they begin you might like to look at a couple more QVC videos on YouTube and talk about the enthusiasm and energy of the presenters and encourage your class to imitate them!

After each presentation encourage the other students to “phone in” with questions about the product and get the presenting group to think on their feet to answer.

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