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THE ARTICLE

Pfizer is the world’s largest pharmaceutical company. It was founded in New York in 1849 by Charles Pfizer and his cousin. Their business started booming after they discovered a process for making citric acid. This method was vital in producing penicillin during World War II and the US Army relied heavily on Pfizer for their antibiotics. Its most famous product, perhaps, is the drug Viagra. The company has had its share of success and controversy. In 2009, the U.S. Justice Department called it a “repeat offender” after it lost four high-profile healthcare fraud cases. Pfizer is also among the top ten U.S. companies with the biggest number of pollution sources. The company spends millions on preventing counterfeits of its drugs. It has a recent history of mergers with other international drugs companies.


 

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WARM UPS



 

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

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

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

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

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

Pfizer is the world’s ___________________________. It was founded in New York in 1849 by Charles Pfizer and his cousin. Their business _________________________ discovered a process for making citric acid. This method was vital in _________________________ World War II and the US _________________________ Pfizer for their antibiotics. Its most famous product, perhaps, is the drug Viagra. The company _________________________ and controversy. In 2009, the U.S. Justice Department called it a “repeat offender” after it lost _________________________ fraud cases. Pfizer is also among the top ten U.S. companies with the _________________________ sources. The company spends millions on preventing _________________________. It has a recent history of mergers with other international drugs companies.

*  CORRECT THE SPELLING

Pfizer is the world’s largest pharmaceutical company. It was deodnfu in New York in 1849 by Charles Pfizer and his cousin. Their business started mooginb after they discovered a process for making citric acid. This hmoedt was vital in irgncodup penicillin during World War II and the US Army relied ilyheva on Pfizer for their antibiotics. Its most famous product, hppesar, is the drug Viagra. The company has had its share of success and eonrcvystro. In 2009, the U.S. Justice Department called it a “repeat offender” after it lost four high-roieflp healthcare fraud cases. Pfizer is also among the top ten U.S. companies with the biggest number of pollution eoucsrs. The company spends millions on preventing counterfeits of its drugs. It has a recent iyhtosr of mergers with other international drugs companies.

*  UNJUMBLE THE WORDS

Pfizer is the world’s largest pharmaceutical company. It was founded in New York in 1849 by Charles Pfizer and his cousin. they Their business started booming after discovered a process for making citric acid. This method in vital was during penicillin producing World War II and the US Army Pfizer their relied on for antibiotics heavily. Its most famous product, perhaps, is the drug Viagra. success of share its had has company The and controversy. In 2009, the U.S. Justice Department called offender four a after it it repeat lost high-profile healthcare fraud cases. also the ten is among top Pfizer U.S. companies with the biggest number of pollution sources. spends company The preventing on millions counterfeits of its drugs. It has a recent history of companies mergers with other international drugs.

*  INSERT THE VOWELS

Pf_z_r _s th_ w_rld’s l_rg_st ph_rm_c__t_c_l c_mp_ny. _t w_s f__nd_d _n N_w Y_rk _n 1849 by Ch_rl_s Pf_z_r _nd h_s c__s_n. Th__r b_s_n_ss st_rt_d b__m_ng _ft_r th_y d_sc_v_r_d _ pr_c_ss f_r m_k_ng c_tr_c _c_d. Th_s m_th_d w_s v_t_l _n pr_d_c_ng p_n_c_ll_n d_r_ng W_rld W_r __ _nd th_ _S _rmy r_l__d h__v_ly _n Pf_z_r f_r th__r _nt_b__t_cs. _ts m_st f_m__s pr_d_ct, p_rh_ps, _s th_ dr_g V__gr_. Th_ c_mp_ny h_s h_d _ts sh_r_ _f s_cc_ss _nd c_ntr_v_rsy. _n 2009, th_ _.S. J_st_c_ D_p_rtm_nt c_ll_d _t _ “r_p__t _ff_nd_r” _ft_r _t l_st f__r h_gh-pr_f_l_ h__lthc_r_ fr__d c_s_s. Pf_z_r _s _ls_ _m_ng th_ t_p t_n _.S. c_mp_n__s w_th th_ b_gg_st n_mb_r _f p_ll_t__n s__rc_s. Th_ c_mp_ny sp_nds m_ll__ns _n pr_v_nt_ng c__nt_rf__ts _f _ts dr_gs. _t h_s _ r_c_nt h_st_ry _f m_rg_rs w_th _th_r _nt_rn_t__n_l dr_gs c_mp_n__s.

*  PUNCTUATE THE TEXT AND ADD CAPITALS

pfizer is the world’s largest pharmaceutical company it was founded in new york in 1849 by charles pfizer and his cousin their business started booming after they discovered a process for making citric acid this method was vital in producing penicillin during world war ii and the us army relied heavily on pfizer for their antibiotics its most famous product perhaps is the drug viagra the company has had its share of success and controversy in 2009 the us justice department called it a “repeat offender” after it lost four high-profile healthcare fraud cases pfizer is also among the top ten us companies with the biggest number of pollution sources the company spends millions on preventing counterfeits of its drugs it has a recent history of mergers with other international drugs companies

*  CHOOSE THE CORRECT TENSE

Pfizer .......... (be) the world’s largest pharmaceutical company. It was .......... (found) in New York in 1849 by Charles Pfizer and his cousin. Their business .......... (start) booming after they .......... (discover) a process for making citric acid. This method .......... (be) vital in .......... (produce) penicillin during World War II and the US Army .......... (rely) heavily on Pfizer for their antibiotics. Its most famous product, perhaps, .......... (be) the drug Viagra. The company has .......... (have) its share of success and controversy. In 2009, the U.S. Justice Department .......... (call) it a “repeat offender” after it .......... (lose) four high-profile healthcare fraud cases. Pfizer .......... (be) also among the top ten U.S. companies with the biggest number of pollution sources. The company .......... (spend) millions on .......... (prevent) counterfeits of its drugs. It .......... (have) a recent history of mergers with other international drugs companies.

*  REWRITE WITH SPACES

Pfizeristheworld’slargestpharmaceuticalcompany.ItwasfoundedinNewYorkin1849
byCharlesPfizerandhiscousin.Theirbusinessstartedboomingaftertheydiscovereda
processformakingcitricacid.ThismethodwasvitalinproducingpenicillinduringWorld
WarIIandtheUSArmyreliedheavilyonPfizerfortheirantibiotics.Itsmostfamousproduct,
perhaps,isthedrugViagra.Thecompanyhashaditsshareofsuccessandcontroversy.In
2009,theU.S.JusticeDepartmentcalledita“repeatoffender”afteritlostfourhigh-
profilehealthcarefraudcases.PfizerisalsoamongthetoptenU.S.companieswiththe
biggestnumberofpollutionsources.Thecompanyspendsmillionsonpreventing
counterfeitsofitsdrugs.Ithasarecenthistoryofmergerswithotherinternational
drugscompanies.

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*  CHOOSE THE CORRECT WORD

Pfizer is the world’s largest pharmaceutical company. It was ____________ in New York in 1849 by Charles Pfizer and his cousin. Their business started ____________ after they discovered a process for making citric acid. This method was ____________ in producing penicillin during World War II and the US Army relied ____________ on Pfizer for their antibiotics. Its most famous product, perhaps, is the drug Viagra. The company has had its ____________ of success and controversy. In 2009, the U.S. Justice Department called it a “____________ offender” after it lost four high-profile healthcare ____________ cases. Pfizer is also among the top ten U.S. companies with the biggest number of pollution ____________. The company spends millions on preventing ____________ of its drugs. It has a ____________ history of mergers with other international drugs companies.

 

 

sources
founded
counterfeits
vital
fraud
recent
share
booming
repeat
heavily

*  PROJECT PFIZER

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

Main products

 

 

 

How to improve them

 

 

 

A brand new ‘killer’ product

 

How Pfizer 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.

*  PFIZER – ROLE PLAY 1

Role  A – Pfizer 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 – Pfizer 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 – Pfizer customer

You are a customer of Pfizer. 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 Pfizer. 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.

*  PFIZER – ROLE PLAY 2

Role  A – Pfizer New Products Director

You have created a new product for Pfizer. 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 Pfizer.

Role  B – Pfizer 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 – Pfizer 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 – Pfizer Shareholder

You know a lot about Pfizer’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.

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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.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

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

1.

________________________________________________________

2.

________________________________________________________

3.

________________________________________________________

4.

________________________________________________________

5.

________________________________________________________

6.

________________________________________________________

*  PFIZER SURVEY

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

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