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lesson link TEACHER’S NOTES
The Oxford 3000™ – A Lesson about Crime
In the Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, 8th edition, you will find a key
symbol [ ] in the entries for the most important words. These keywords, the
Oxford 3000™, are the most useful ones to know, and the entries give students
a lot of information that will help them not only to understand those words
but to use them correctly and build their knowledge of related words.
Upper-Intermediate to Advanced
1 hour
To revise vocabulary related to the topic of ‘crime’ and to familiarize students
with collocational and grammatical information in the dictionary.
One copy of the worksheet per student; one copy of the Oxford Advanced
Learner’s Dictionary, 8th edition per pair.
(5 minutes)
Ask the class whether they enjoy reading crime novels or watching detective series on
television and ask them to name any famous fictional detectives they know. Explain that in
this lesson they will be revising vocabulary to do with crime, and that they’ll be doing a little
detective work with the dictionary, using Oxford 3000™ keywords as the starting point.
Activity 1
(10 minutes)
Explain that as you’re going to be using these words a lot, you need to be sure of how to
pronounce them.
Write the symbols on the board: / e /
pronounce them.
/ aɪ /
/ əʊ /
/ iː / and ask the class to
Give out Worksheet 1 to all the class, and give out dictionaries to half the class (Group A).
Ask the class to look at the words in Activity 1 and decide which vowel sound is correct
for the first syllable of each word. Group B, the half without the dictionaries, must use
their own knowledge or guess. The group with the dictionaries should check the phonetic
transcription of the words in the dictionary. When both groups have finished, elicit answers
from Group B and ask Group A to confirm or correct them.
/ aɪ /
/ əʊ /
/ iː /
The Oxford 3000™ – A Lesson about Crime
© Oxford University Press 2012
lesson link TEACHER’S NOTES
Activity 2
(10 minutes)
Now pair up the students so that all of them can see a dictionary and ask them to look at
the words in Activity 2. Where does the stress fall? On the first syllable  or on the second
syllable ? Ask the students whether they know how to find this out from the dictionary
and if necessary remind them about the primary stress mark [ ˈ]. Thus / ˈwɪtnəs / has the
stress pattern . The class should use the dictionaries to allocate the words to the correct
legal, suspect (n), victim, witness
police, admit, arrest, suspect (v)
Activity 3
(10 minutes)
Remind the class that they can use their dictionaries to build on their knowledge of
vocabulary by finding a network of related words. Look at the entry for crime and show
them the words following it including the related adjective and noun criminal.
criminal (adjective)
criminal (person)
suspicious (adjective) suspicion
suspiciously (adverb)
murder (verb)
murderer (person)
investigation (noun)
investigator (person)
Activity 4
(15 minutes)
Now ask the class to complete the gap-fill exercise, using the dictionary to help them.
1 victim
4 suspicious
7 investigation 10 evidence
13 court
2 witnesses
5 weapon
8 suspects
11 criminal
14 lawyer
3 crime
6 police
9 officer
12 legal
15 stolen
Activity 5 and 6
(10 minutes)
Focus the class’s attention on the entry for crime again and ask them what information they
can find in the examples. Point out the bold type in the examples that highlights common
combinations of words. Then remind them that the entries can also help them with grammar
information. Do the first sentence of Activity 6 with them, focussing on the structure shown in
bold type suspect sb of doing sth. Ask the class to complete the remaining sentences.
Activity 5
commit a crime / a murder
give evidence
pass judgment
Activity 6
1 of taking
2 of poisoning
3 (to) breaking
4 with defrauding
Extension (Activity 7)
For homework, you could ask the class to write a paragraph on the topic. Point out that in
several of the entries they have looked at, there were useful boxes of extra vocabulary, such as
the Topic Collocations box at crime, or the Synonyms box at witness.
The Oxford 3000™ – A Lesson about Crime
© Oxford University Press 2012
lesson link WORKSHEET
The Oxford 3000™ – A Lesson about Crime
Activity 1 Pronunciation
What is the vowel sound in the first syllable? Put the words under the
correct symbol.
stolen weapon crime legal criminal
/ aɪ /
/ əʊ /
/iː /
_____________________ _____________________ _____________________ _____________________ _____________________
Activity 2 Word stress
Put the words in the correct column.
police admit legal suspect (noun)
suspect (verb) arrest witness victim
Activity 3 Criminal networks
Fill the gaps with the correct form of the word in bold.
The Oxford 3000™ – A Lesson about Crime
© Oxford University Press 2012
lesson link WORKSHEET
Activity 4 The next Agatha Christie
Read the story and fill the gaps with a word from the box below. You may need
to change the form of the word to make it fit the sentence (for example, make a
noun plural or put a verb into the correct tense).
court crime criminal evidence investigation
lawyer legal officer police steal suspect
suspicious victim weapon witness
She closed her book, balancing it on top of the basket next to her on the
park bench and closed her eyes in the warm sunshine. How she wished
she could write something like that – a murder mystery. Surely it couldn’t
be so difficult – after all, she had read so many crime novels, watched so
many films and detective series on TV...
At first it would seem like the perfect murder. The 1_______________________ lived
alone and received very few visitors – there were no 2_______________________ to
the 3_______________________ . No one had been seen acting in a 4_______________________
way in the area. The 5_______________________ with which he had been killed had
not been found, but it was clear that he had been dealt a heavy blow. He
was a man who had had many enemies, and so when the 6_______________________
began their 7_______________________ , they had a number of 8_______________________ to
question. However, a brilliant young
_______________________ ,
sharp-eyed and
even sharper-witted (based on herself, of course) would find a vital piece
of 10_______________________ which would lead to the arrest of the murderer.
But would she be able to tell the story convincingly? Did a crime writer
really need a
mind? And she knew very little about
system, apart from the
in those films. She would have to find a
to help her
get the details right.
Suddenly sensing a slight movement in the bushes behind her, she
opened her eyes and looked around for her book and basket, but they
were gone – 15_______________________ from under her nose!
The Oxford 3000™ – A Lesson about Crime
© Oxford University Press 2012
lesson link WORKSHEET
Activity 5 Collocations
Find the right verb to go with each of the nouns in the box on the right.
a crime
Activity 6 Verb Patterns
Fill in these sentences with the correct form of the verb in brackets and, if necessary, a
preposition. Use the information in the keyword entries (in bold type) to help you.
1 They suspected him _____________________________ (take) the money.
2 The police accused her _____________________________ (poison) her husband.
3 The boys admitted _____________________________ (break) into the house.
4 He appeared in court charged _____________________________ (defraud) the company.
Activity 7 Writing
Describe your favourite crime novel or TV series, explaining why you like it.
Write about 100 words.
Write a paragraph explaining why you think crime novels and TV series are so popular.
The Oxford 3000™ – A Lesson about Crime
© Oxford University Press 2012
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