Q: I notice that there are authentic listening opportunities through the TED Talks and the Real People videos from the Lesson A ‘Listening’ sections. Will these listening opportunities be too challenging for my learners?

A: The purpose of the authentic listening input is to build confidence for real-world communication. By introducing authentic language in the language learning classroom, Keynote prepares learners for the type of language they will hear outside the classroom. Please note that:

  • The TED Talks selected for Keynote were carefully chosen from thousands of TED Talks based on the appropriateness and interest-level for the target audience. The language is authentic and the speakers are coached to communicate effectively.
  • Learners may not understand every word in the videos. The focus is on comprehension of the main ideas and the ability to effectively communicate opinions about those ideas in English.    
  • Throughout each unit, every TED Talk is segmented into manageable chunks. Through the use of visuals and a one-of-a-kind syllabus, each segment is supported by instruction and activities designed to help learners access the language and ideas presented in the TED Talk.
  • To increase comprehension and skill development, video segments can, and should be, watched more than once.


Q: Does this book only teach learners how to deliver presentations?

A: Keynote is an integrated skills series that teaches reading, writing, listening, speaking, grammar, and vocabulary. It is unique in that is also develops presentation literacy through the use of TED Talks. Developing presentation literacy alongside the integrated skills will help learners communicate their own ideas effectively and powerfully in English. 


Q: Where did the interviews come from in the ‘Listening’ sections?

A: The audio for the interviews was especially recorded for Keynote and features real language from people around the world like musicians, journalists, and National Geographic explorers. 


Q: What is TED?

A: TED is a non-profit, global organization with a simple goal: to spread great ideas. Every year, hundreds of presenters share ideas at TED events around the world. Millions of people watch TED Talks online, inspiring many to change their attitudes and their lives.  


Q: Why use TED Talks in English Language Teaching?

A: TED speakers use authentic language, model best practices in presentation delivery, and bring real and fascinating ideas to the classroom. These ideas inspire learners to form opinions that they want to share. National Geographic Learning materials can help them do that in English.  


Q: How does Keynote use TED Talks to teach English?

A: Learners develop English language skills, presentation literacy, and explore great ideas through authentic TED Talks. Through the use of real content including TED Talks, each unit helps learners build an understanding around one interesting, global idea.


Q: How is using Keynote different than using a TED Talk found online?

A: National Geographic Learning is the only publisher able to curate TED Talks for English language learners. The TED Talks selected for NGL materials are fascinating, language-level appropriate, and supported by a one-of-a-kind curriculum. In Keynote, TED Talks are broken into manageable segments that are used as springboards for language learning.


Q: Has the language in the TED Talks been edited?

A: No, the TED Talks are not edited for language level, but in many instances they have been shortened in length. The omitted sections were either deemed too difficult in terms of language level or not necessary for learners to understand the speaker’s core message. The length of the videos increase as the level gets higher and the Talks are broken into accessible chunks in every unit. Furthermore, the supporting activities are carefully graded to make the TED Talks accessible for the learners at each level.


Q: How many hours are needed to teach a level of Keynote?

A:  The series is perfect for 70–90 teaching hours, though the pacing guide will articulate lesson plans for 60, 90, and 120 hours courses.


Q: How does Keynote teach Critical Thinking skills?

A: Critical thinking is explicitly signposted in the unit along with the particular skill that is being developed, such as applying, evaluating, and interpreting information.