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THE ARTICLE

Panasonic is a Japanese multinational corporation that produces electronics. It is Japan’s largest maker of electrical goods and the 89th biggest company in the world. The company was founded in 1918 by Konosuke Matsushita. It was called Matsushita Denki and started off making bicycle lamps. It changed its name to Panasonic in 2003. ‘Panasonic’ was the name of the audio speakers it produced in 1955. After WWII, the company started making a wide variety of household electronics and bicycles. It became a world leader in the former but was forced to give up making bicycles due to poor levels of profitability. Panasonic bought its rival Sanyo (which was started my Matsushita’s brother-in-law) in 2008. The merged corporation has annual revenues of over $110 billion. The company uses the slogan “Panasonic ideas for life”.


 

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WARM UPS



 

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

2. PANASONIC MORNING: Each student pretends to be an employee of Panasonic. They walk around the class and talk about the company and their job.

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

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

5. TRUE OR FALSE: Students find out several facts about Panasonic. 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 Panasonic. 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

Panasonic is a _________________________ that produces electronics. It is Japan’s largest maker of electrical goods and _________________________ in the world. The company was founded in 1918 by Konosuke Matsushita. It was called Matsushita Denki and _________________________ lamps. It changed its name to Panasonic in 2003. ‘Panasonic’ was the name of the _________________________ in 1955. After WWII, the company started making a ________________________ electronics and bicycles. It became a world leader in the former but was forced to give up making bicycles due ______________________. Panasonic ______________________ (which was started my Matsushita’s brother-in-law) in 2008. The merged corporation has annual revenues of over $110 billion. The _________________________ “Panasonic ideas for life”.

*  CORRECT THE SPELLING

Panasonic is a Japanese otluamitlanni corporation that produces electronics. It is Japan’s largest maker of eatceilclr goods and the 89th biggest company in the world. The company was founded in 1918 by Konosuke Matsushita. It was called Matsushita Denki and dterats off making bicycle lamps. It changed its name to Panasonic in 2003. ‘Panasonic’ was the name of the aodui speakers it produced in 1955. After WWII, the company started making a wide taiveyr of household electronics and bicycles. It became a world leader in the mfeorr but was forced to give up making bicycles due to poor levels of profitability. Panasonic bought its irvla Sanyo (which was started my Matsushita’s brother-in-law) in 2008. The meredg corporation has annual seveenru of over $110 billion. The company uses the lagsno “Panasonic ideas for life”.

*  UNJUMBLE THE WORDS

Panasonic a is that corporation multinational Japanese produces electronics. It is Japan’s largest maker of company goods the biggest electrical and 89th in the world. Konosuke by 1918 in founded was company The Matsushita. It was called Matsushita Denki and started off making bicycle lamps. It changed its name to Panasonic in 2003. of ‘Panasonic’ the was audio the speakers name it produced in 1955. After WWII, the company started of electronics a variety household making wide and bicycles. a former world but leader It in became the was forced to up poor making levels bicycles to due give of profitability. Panasonic bought its rival Sanyo (which was started my Matsushita’s brother-in-law) in 2008. The revenues over corporation annual of merged has $110 billion. The company uses the slogan “Panasonic ideas for life”.

*  INSERT THE VOWELS

P_n_s_n_c _s _ J_p_n_s_ m_lt_n_t__n_l c_rp_r_t__n th_t pr_d_c_s _l_ctr_n_cs. _t _s J_p_n’s l_rg_st m_k_r _f _l_ctr_c_l g__ds _nd th_ 89th b_gg_st c_mp_ny _n th_ w_rld. Th_ c_mp_ny w_s f__nd_d _n 1918 by K_n_s_k_ M_ts_sh_t_. _t w_s c_ll_d M_ts_sh_t_ D_nk_ _nd st_rt_d _ff m_k_ng b_cycl_ l_mps. _t ch_ng_d _ts n_m_ t_ P_n_s_n_c _n 2003. ‘P_n_s_n_c’ w_s th_ n_m_ _f th_ __d__ sp__k_rs _t pr_d_c_d _n 1955. _ft_r WW__, th_ c_mp_ny st_rt_d m_k_ng _ w_d_ v_r__ty _f h__s_h_ld _l_ctr_n_cs _nd b_cycl_s. _t b_c_m_ _ w_rld l__d_r _n th_ f_rm_r b_t w_s f_rc_d t_ g_v_ _p m_k_ng b_cycl_s d__ t_ p__r l_v_ls _f pr_f_t_b_l_ty. P_n_s_n_c b__ght _ts r_v_l S_ny_ (wh_ch w_s st_rt_d my M_ts_sh_t_’s br_th_r-_n-l_w) _n 2008. Th_ m_rg_d c_rp_r_t__n h_s _nn__l r_v_n__s _f _v_r $110 b_ll__n. Th_ c_mp_ny _s_s th_ sl_g_n “P_n_s_n_c _d__s f_r l_f_”.

*  PUNCTUATE THE TEXT AND ADD CAPITALS

panasonic is a japanese multinational corporation that produces electronics it is japan’s largest maker of electrical goods and the 89th biggest company in the world the company was founded in 1918 by konosuke matsushita it was called matsushita denki and started off making bicycle lamps it changed its name to panasonic in 2003 ‘panasonic’ was the name of the audio speakers it produced in 1955 after wwii the company started making a wide variety of household electronics and bicycles it became a world leader in the former but was forced to give up making bicycles due to poor levels of profitability panasonic bought its rival sanyo (which was started my matsushita’s brother-in-law) in 2008 the merged corporation has annual revenues of over $110 billion the company uses the slogan “panasonic ideas for life”

*  CHOOSE THE CORRECT TENSE

Panasonic .......... (be) a Japanese multinational corporation that produces electronics. It .......... (be) Japan’s largest maker of electrical goods and the 89th biggest company in the world. The company was .......... (found) in 1918 by Konosuke Matsushita. It was .......... (call) Matsushita Denki and .......... (start) off making bicycle lamps. It .......... (change) its name to Panasonic in 2003. ‘Panasonic’ .......... (be) the name of the audio speakers it .......... (produce) in 1955. After WWII, the company .......... (start) making a wide variety of household electronics and bicycles. It .......... (become) a world leader in the former but was .......... (force) to give up making bicycles due to poor levels of profitability. Panasonic .......... (buy) its rival Sanyo (which was .......... (start) my Matsushita’s brother-in-law) in 2008. The merged corporation .......... (have) annual revenues of over $110 billion. The company .......... (use) the slogan “Panasonic ideas for life”.

*  REWRITE WITH SPACES

PanasonicisaJapanesemultinationalcorporationthatproduceselectronics.ItisJapan’s
largestmakerofelectricalgoodsandthe89thbiggestcompanyintheworld.Thecompany
wasfoundedin1918byKonosukeMatsushita.ItwascalledMatsushitaDenkiandstartedoff
makingbicyclelamps.ItchangeditsnametoPanasonicin2003.‘Panasonic’wasthename
oftheaudiospeakersitproducedin1955.AfterWWII,thecompanystartedmakingawide
varietyofhouseholdelectronicsandbicycles.Itbecameaworldleaderintheformerbutwas
forcedtogiveupmakingbicyclesduetopoorlevelsofprofitability.Panasonicboughtitsrival
Sanyo(whichwasstartedmyMatsushita’sbrother-in-law)in2008.Themergedcorporation
hasannualrevenuesofover$110billion.Thecompanyusestheslogan
“Panasonicideasforlife”.

______________________________________________________________________________

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*  CHOOSE THE CORRECT WORD

Panasonic is a Japanese multinational corporation that ____________ electronics. It is Japan’s largest maker of electrical goods and the 89th biggest company in the world. The company was ____________ in 1918 by Konosuke Matsushita. It was called Matsushita Denki and ____________ off making bicycle lamps. It changed its name to Panasonic in 2003. ‘Panasonic’ was the name of the ____________ speakers it produced in 1955. After WWII, the company started making a wide ____________ of household electronics and bicycles. It became a world ____________ in the former but was ____________ to give up making bicycles due to poor levels of profitability. Panasonic bought its ____________ Sanyo (which was started my Matsushita’s brother-in-law) in 2008. The ____________ corporation has annual revenues of over $110 billion. The company uses the ____________ “Panasonic ideas for life”.

 

 

audio
produces
slogan
forced
variety
started
merged
leader
founded
rival

*  PROJECT PANASONIC

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

Main products

 

 

 

How to improve them

 

 

 

A brand new ‘killer’ product

 

How Panasonic 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.

*  PANASONIC – ROLE PLAY 1

Role  A – Panasonic 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 – Panasonic 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 – Panasonic customer

You are a customer of Panasonic. 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 Panasonic. 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.

*  PANASONIC – ROLE PLAY 2

Role  A – Panasonic New Products Director

You have created a new product for Panasonic. 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 Panasonic.

Role  B – Panasonic 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 – Panasonic 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 – Panasonic Shareholder

You know a lot about Panasonic’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.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

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

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

________________________________________________________

3.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

*  DISCUSSION (Write your own questions)

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

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

________________________________________________________

3.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

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

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

________________________________________________________

3.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

*  PANASONIC SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about Panasonic 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 Panasonic 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 Panasonic. 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 Panasonic. Talk about what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. MAGAZINE ARTICLE: Write a magazine article about Panasonic. 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. PANASONIC POSTER Make a poster about Panasonic. 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 PANASONIC LESSON: Make your own English lesson on Panasonic. 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 Panasonic. 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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