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THE ARTICLE

Levi’s have been the most famous brand of jeans and denim clothing for decades. Levi Strauss & Co. was founded in 1853 when Levi Strauss emigrated from Germany to San Francisco to help with his brothers’ dry goods business. The company began producing denim overalls in the 1870s but did not start making jeans until the 1920s. Strauss and his partner Jacob Davis patented the copper rivet to reinforce clothing in 1873. It was to become a key part of their jeans design. The demand for their jeans skyrocketed in WWII. This saw their sales staff grow from 15 before the War to 22,000 in 35 countries just after it. Levi's jeans became popular with young people in the 1950s and ‘60s. The 501 was then, and is today, their biggest-selling product. The company leads the fashion industry in the number of trademark infringement cases.


 

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WARM UPS



 

1. BRAINSTORM CHAT: Write all the words you can think of about Levi’s on the board or on a piece of paper. Talk about these words with your partner(s).

2. LEVI’S MORNING: Each student pretends to be an employee of Levi’s. They walk around the class and talk about the company and their job.

3. RUMOURS: Each student writes down a pretend rumour about Levi’s. They then walk around the class and talk to other students about their rumour.

4. GOOD AND BAD: Brainstorm good and bad things about Levi’s and write them on the board. Students talk about these in pairs.

5. TRUE OR FALSE: Students find out several facts about Levi’s. They write these down and add the same number of things about the company that are false. Students test each other on which of their points are true or false.

6. FACTS: In groups, students write down as many facts as they can about Levi’s. The winner is the group with the most facts. Teacher may wish to have groups share their facts to make sure they are real.

*  LISTENING / READING GAP FILL

Levi’s have been the ______________________ jeans and denim ______________________. Levi Strauss & Co. was founded in 1853 when Levi Strauss emigrated from Germany to San Francisco to help with his brothers’ ______________________. The company began producing denim overalls in the 1870s but did not start making jeans until the 1920s. Strauss and his partner Jacob Davis ______________________ rivet to reinforce clothing in 1873. It was to become a key part of their jeans design. The demand for ______________________ in WWII. This saw their sales staff grow from 15 before the War to 22,000 in 35 countries just after it. Levi's ______________________ with young people in the 1950s and ‘60s. The 501 was then, and is today, their biggest-selling product. The company ______________________ industry in the number ______________________ cases.

*  CORRECT THE SPELLING

Levi’s have been the most famous brand of jeans and denim clothing for aedsdce. Levi Strauss & Co. was founded in 1853 when Levi Strauss grtiamede from Germany to San Francisco to help with his brothers’ dry goods business. The company began producing denim salevlor in the 1870s but did not start making jeans until the 1920s. Strauss and his raenptr Jacob Davis patented the copper rivet to reinforce chglinot in 1873. It was to become a key part of their jeans design. The nmedad for their jeans skyrocketed in WWII. This saw their sales staff grow from 15 before the War to 22,000 in 35 countries just after it. Levi's jeans became urpapol with young people in the 1950s and ‘60s. The 501 was then, and is today, their biggest-selling uctprdo. The company leads the fashion tnuiydsr in the number of tkredaarm infringement cases.

*  UNJUMBLE THE WORDS

Levi’s famous of been most brand have the jeans and denim clothing for decades. Levi Strauss & Co. was founded in 1853 when Levi Strauss emigrated from Germany to San Francisco to help with his brothers’ dry goods business. The producing company denim began overalls in the making 1870s did start jeans but not until the 1920s. Strauss and his partner Jacob Davis patented clothing reinforce to rivet copper the 1873 in. It was to jeans design become a key part of their. The demand for their jeans skyrocketed in WWII. This saw their sales before 15 from grow staff to War the 22,000 in 35 countries just after it. Levi's jeans became popular with young people in the 1950s and ‘60s. The 501 was then, biggest , is product - their today and selling. The company of number the in industry fashion the leads trademark infringement cases.

*  INSERT THE VOWELS

L_v_’s h_v_ b__n th_ m_st f_m__s br_nd _f j__ns _nd d_n_m cl_th_ng f_r d_c_d_s. L_v_ Str__ss & C_. w_s f__nd_d _n 1853 wh_n L_v_ Str__ss _m_gr_t_d fr_m G_rm_ny t_ S_n Fr_nc_sc_ t_ h_lp w_th h_s br_th_rs’ dry g__ds b_s_n_ss. Th_ c_mp_ny b_g_n pr_d_c_ng d_n_m _v_r_lls _n th_ 1870s b_t d_d n_t st_rt m_k_ng j__ns _nt_l th_ 1920s. Str__ss _nd h_s p_rtn_r J_c_b D_v_s p_t_nt_d th_ c_pp_r r_v_t t_ r__nf_rc_ cl_th_ng _n 1873. _t w_s t_ b_c_m_ _ k_y p_rt _f th__r j__ns d_s_gn. Th_ d_m_nd f_r th__r j__ns skyr_ck_t_d _n WW__. Th_s s_w th__r s_l_s st_ff gr_w fr_m 15 b_f_r_ th_ W_r t_ 22,000 _n 35 c__ntr__s j_st _ft_r _t. L_v_'s j__ns b_c_m_ p_p_l_r w_th y__ng p__pl_ _n th_ 1950s _nd ‘60s. Th_ 501 w_s th_n, _nd _s t_d_y, th__r b_gg_st-s_ll_ng pr_d_ct. Th_ c_mp_ny l__ds th_ f_sh__n _nd_stry _n th_ n_mb_r _f tr_d_m_rk _nfr_ng_m_nt c_s_s.

*  PUNCTUATE THE TEXT AND ADD CAPITALS

levi’s have been the most famous brand of jeans and denim clothing for decades levi strauss & co was founded in 1853 when levi strauss emigrated from germany to san francisco to help with his brothers’ dry goods business the company began producing denim overalls in the 1870s but did not start making jeans until the 1920s strauss and his partner jacob davis patented the copper rivet to reinforce clothing in 1873 it was to become a key part of their jeans design the demand for their jeans skyrocketed in wwii this saw their sales staff grow from 15 before the war to 22000 in 35 countries just after it levi's jeans became popular with young people in the 1950s and ‘60s the 501 was then and is today their biggest-selling product the company leads the fashion industry in the number of trademark infringement cases

*  CHOOSE THE CORRECT TENSE

Levi’s have .......... (be) the most famous brand of jeans and denim clothing for decades. Levi Strauss & Co. .......... (be) founded in 1853 when Levi Strauss emigrated from Germany to San Francisco to .......... (help) with his brothers’ dry goods business. The company .......... (begin) producing denim overalls in the 1870s but did not start .......... (make) jeans until the 1920s. Strauss and his partner Jacob Davis .......... (patent) the copper rivet to reinforce clothing in 1873. It was to .......... (become) a key part of their jeans design. The demand for their jeans skyrocketed in WWII. This saw their sales staff .......... (grow) from 15 before the War to 22,000 in 35 countries just after it. Levi's jeans .......... (become) popular with young people in the 1950s and ‘60s. The 501 .......... (be) then, and .......... (be) today, their biggest-selling product. The company .......... (lead) the fashion industry in the number of trademark infringement cases.

*  REWRITE WITH SPACES

Levi’shavebeenthemostfamousbrandofjeansanddenimclothingfordecades.LeviStrauss&
Co.wasfoundedin1853whenLeviStraussemigratedfromGermanytoSanFranciscotohelpwith
hisbrothers’drygoodsbusiness.Thecompanybeganproducingdenimoverallsinthe1870sbut
didnotstartmakingjeansuntilthe1920s.StraussandhispartnerJacobDavispatentedthe
copperrivettoreinforceclothingin1873.Itwastobecomeakeypartoftheirjeansdesign.The
demandfortheirjeansskyrocketedinWWII.Thissawtheirsalesstaffgrowfrom15before
theWarto22,000in35countriesjustafterit.Levi'sjeansbecamepopularwithyoungpeople
inthe1950sand‘60s.The501wasthen,andistoday,theirbiggest-sellingproduct.Thecompanyleadsthefashionindustryinthenumberoftrademark
infringementcases.

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*  CHOOSE THE CORRECT WORD

Levi’s have been the most famous brand of jeans and denim ____________ for decades. Levi Strauss & Co. was founded in 1853 when Levi Strauss ____________ from Germany to San Francisco to help with his brothers’ dry goods ____________. The company began producing denim ____________ in the 1870s but did not start making jeans until the 1920s. Strauss and his partner Jacob Davis patented the copper ____________ to reinforce clothing in 1873. It was to become a key part of their jeans ____________. The demand for their jeans ____________ in WWII. This saw their sales staff grow from 15 before the War to 22,000 in 35 countries just after it. Levi's jeans ____________ popular with young people in the 1950s and ‘60s. The 501 was then, and is today, their biggest-selling product. The company ____________ the fashion industry in the number of trademark infringement ____________.

 

 

business
overalls
became
design
clothing
cases
rivet
emigrated
leads
skyrocketed

*  PROJECT LEVI’S

Part 1. Your mission is to increase the profits and sales of Levi’s. Complete this  table with your project partner(s):

Main products

 

 

 

How to improve them

 

 

 

A brand new ‘killer’ product

 

How Levi’s is better than the competition

 

How to beat the competition

 

Part 2. Change partners and look at their project. Suggest improvements. Ask for advice on your project:

Part 3. Make a presentation on your project. Give it to the class. Vote the best projects.

*  LEVI’S – ROLE PLAY 1

Role  A – Levi’s CEO

You believe your company is the best in the world. It pays its workers very well and working conditions are great. Your company is very green – it cares about the environment. You think your levels of customer service are great. Disagree with person B, C and D.

Role  B – Levi’s worker

You think it’s a bad company to work for. You’re very unhappy with pay, raises and bonuses. You are very unhappy with the working environment. You don’t like the company’s policy on the environment. You keep hearing profits are more important than customers. Disagree with A and C. Tell D the truth.

Role  C – Levi’s customer

You are a customer of Levi’s. You used to think it was great, but not now. Its workers are always very rude. No one ever answers the phone. You are shocked about its policy on the environment. You think all staff should get less pay. You disagree with person A and B. Tell D the truth.

Role  D – A journalist

You keep hearing bad things about Levi’s. You want to tell the world in your newspaper. You heard the CEO gets a huge bonus every year. You found a company memo saying profits are more important than the environment. You want to know why so many staff are ill. Find the truth.

*  LEVI’S – ROLE PLAY 2

Role  A – Levi’s New Products Director

You have created a new product for Levi’s. You believe the new product will be the company’s best ever. It will be a bestseller. There are people who do not agree with you. You need B, C and D on your side. Tell them why this is a product that will bring great things to Levi’s.

Role  B – Levi’s Marketing Director

You think the company’s new product is a really bad idea. It will give your company a really bad name. You think the New Products Director is trying to destroy the company. Try to get him/her to understand there’s no way the new product will sell. Try to get person C and D on your side.

Role  C – Levi’s Market Researcher

You have interviewed thousands of people about the new product. They don’t like it or hate it. You think it will be successful if they make many changes. Tell the New Products Director he/she needs to change the product. You neither like nor trust person B. Disagree will him/her.

Role  D – Levi’s Shareholder

You know a lot about Levi’s new product. You are worried it will not sell and share prices will go down. You think A is crazy and must find a new job. You agree with everything B says. You don’t agree with C. The new product should not go on the market.

*  JOB INTERVIEW ROLE PLAY

INTERVIEWER  (Write the questions you want to ask the candidate.)

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

________________________________________________________

3.

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4.

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5.

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6.

________________________________________________________

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INTERVIEWEE  (Write questions you want to ask the interviewer.)

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

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3.

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4.

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5.

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6.

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*  DISCUSSION (Write your own questions)

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

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3.

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4.

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5.

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6.

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STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

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3.

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4.

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5.

________________________________________________________

6.

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*  LEVI’S SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about Levi’s in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper.

When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

*  WRITING 1 – SPEED WRITING

Write anything about Levi’s for 10 minutes. Show your partner your paper. Correct each other’s work.

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*  WRITING 2 – LETTER OF COMPLAINT

Write a letter to Levi’s. Complain about one of its products. Ask for a refund. Show your partner your paper. Correct each other’s work.

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*  WRITING 3 – LETTER OF APOLOGY

Write a letter of apology to the customer. Explain why you cannot give a refund. Show your partner your letter. Correct each other’s work.

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*  HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET INFO: Search the Internet and find more information about Levi’s. Talk about what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. MAGAZINE ARTICLE: Write a magazine article about Levi’s. What have they done recently? What are their plans? Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Give each other feedback on your articles.

4. LEVI’S POSTER Make a poster about Levi’s. Make sure you sell the company to the public.  Show it to your classmates in the next lesson. Give each other feedback on your posters.

5. MY LEVI’S LESSON: Make your own English lesson on Levi’s. Make sure there is a good mix of things to do. Find some good online activities. Teach the class / another group when you have finished.

6. ONLINE SHARING: Use your blog, wiki, Facebook page, MySpace page, Twitter stream, Del-icio-us / StumbleUpon account, or any other social media tool to get opinions on Levi’s. Share your findings with the class.

ANSWERS

You can check your answers to these activities by looking at the article at the top of this page.

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