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S3+ Resource for the Italian film 'Men at Work'


Film title: 'Men at Work'

Synopsis: When the city wakes up for a day of work, the pressure is on for unemployed Luca to convince his business contact Michele that he is gainfully employed.

Genre: Live-action drama

Suggested age group for this film activity: S3+

Place of this activity sheet within MLAN Curriculum:

  • Lifestyles – Leisure
  • Lifestyles – Family and Friends

Cross curricular and inter disciplinary areas (subjects):

  • Modern Studies
  • Health and well-being

Curriculum for Excellence Outcomes

MLAN 4.01, 4.02, 4.03,4.04, 4.05, 4.06, 4.07

Resources required:

Computer and projector or DVD player + screen, paper

Prior Learning

NB. For further details about these activities view and print off the Pre-view and Main Activities pdf.

This film would fit into 2 main areas of the curriculum:

  1. Lifestyles – Leisure – Invitation/Telephone Conversations/Arranging a Date.
  2. Lifestyles – Family and Friends – Daily Routine.

Pupils should know how to conduct a telephone conversation in the target language as well as how to arrange an appointment with someone.

It would also be useful to discuss daily routines both in this country and in Italy and how they differ.


Pre-viewing or Warm-up Activities

The title of the film should be discussed with class. What do they think that it will be about?

Why is the title in English?


Class should listen to the film before they view it.

  • What is their perception of the film at this stage?
  • What do they think is happening?
  • Are they convinced by the deception?
  • Class should then watch the film.

Main Activities

When listening to the film pupils should write down words/phrases that they have understood. At the end of this activity there could either be a class discussion about what is happening or pupils could work in groups and discuss this then report back to the class. (See Page 1 - Pre-view and Main Activities pdf)

When watching the film for the first time pupils should again write down any additional words/phrases that they have understood.

At the end of the first viewing you could have a class discussion about whether they were taken in by the deception. (See Pages 2-3 - Pre-view and Main Activities pdf)

The film should then be viewed a third time pausing at various different points and pupils will answer different questions about the film/characters. (See Pages 4-5 - Pre-view and Main Activities pdf)

After watching the film pupils will have telephone conversations with either each other or the Native Language Assistant (if available).

These will either be controlled or more open-ended.

This could possibly be done on phones in different rooms to give it a more authentic feel. (See Pages 7-8 - Pre-view and Main Activities pdf)

Extension Activities

Cultural awareness: La bella figura.

This could either be researched on the internet or the teacher could explain what this means in Italian culture. (See Page 1 - Extension Activities pdf)

Economic problems in Italy

This could also be researched on the internet and pupils could find out how the economic crisis is affecting Italians today. (See page 1 - Extension Activities pdf)

Music in film

(See page 1 - Extension Activities pdf)

Vocabulary, phrases and grammar lists appropriate to the film: Pre-view and Main Activities pdf.

This list is not exhaustive but highlights some key vocabulary which pupils may find useful (especially for the telephone conversations). (See Page 7 - Pre-view and Main Activities pdf)

Assessment Possibilities

Telephone conversations could be used as an assessment instrument for both Standard Grade and Intermediate 1.

Compiled by Louise Lang (2010)