Agatha Christie

Конспект урока

Педагогика и дидактика

Аgatha Mary Clarissa Christie is possibly the worlds most famous detective story writer. She wrote 79 novels and several plays. Her sales outnumber those of William Shakespeare. However, behind her 4,680,000 words was a painfully shy woman whose life was often lonely and unhappy.



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Agatha Christie


Цели урока:

  1.  Расширить активный словарный запас учащихся.
  2.  Тренировать учащихся в чтении текста публицистического характера с целью получения информации на уровне полного или частичного понимания с использованием разноплановых заданий.
  3.  Развивать лексическую догадку, внимание, быстроту реакции, гибкость мышления.
  4.  Способствовать воспитанию стремления познавать новое, расшить кругозор учащихся.

Agatha Christie

Pre-reading activity

T: I’m sure all of you have heard the name of a famous writer Agatha Christie. But what do you know about her life and career?

When did she live?

What country did she come from?

What was her family like?

Did she live a happy and long life?

What books by this writer have read?

What film versions have you seen?

While-reading activity

Agatha Christie (New Headway Intermediate Oxford University Press)

     Agatha Mary Clarissa Christie is possibly the world’s most famous detective story writer. She wrote 79 novels and several plays. Her sales outnumber those of William Shakespeare. However, behind her 4,680,000 words was a painfully shy woman whose life was often lonely and unhappy.

     She was born in 1890 in Devon, the third child of Clarissa and Frederick Miller, and grew into a beautiful and sensitive girl with waist-length golden hair. She didn’t go to school but was educated at home by her mother. Her father died when she was 11 and both she and her mother were grief-stricken.

     During World War I, while she was working in a hospital dispensary, she learned about chemicals and poisons, which proved very useful in her later career. She wrote her first detective novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles, in 1920. In it she introduced Hercule Poirot, the Belgian detective who appeared in many subsequent novels. Her other detective was an elderly spinster called Miss Marple.

     In 1914, at the beginning of the war, she married Archibald Christie but the marriage was unhappy. It didn’t last and they divorced in 1926. That year there was a double tragedy in her life because her much-loved mother died.

     Agatha suffered a nervous breakdown, and one night she abandoned her car and mysteriously disappeared. She went missing for 11 days and was eventually found in a hotel in Harrogate, in the North of England. It is interesting to note that it was while she was suffering so much that she wrote one of her masterpieces, The Murder of Roger Acroyd.

     Agatha desperately wanted solitude and developed very bitter feelings towards the media because the newspapers had given her a hard time over her breakdown and disappearance. She was determined never let them enter her private life again and she buried herself in her work. On 25 November 1952 her play The Mousetrap opened in London. Today, over 40 years later, it is still running. It is the longest running show in the whole world.

     She enjoyed a very happy second marriage to Max Mallowan, an archeologist. Her detective skills were a help to him in his excavations in Syria and Iraq. By successfully staying out of the limelight she ultimately found happiness with her beloved husband. She died peacefully in 1976.

1.Which of the following numbers or dates relate to Agatha Christie? What do they refer to?

50      79      6,000      11       13      14      4,680,000      1882       1920      1926       1952

Keys:79             (She wrote 79 novels)

        11             (Her father died when she was 11, and she went missing for 11 days)

        4,680,000 (She has written 4,680,000 words)

        1920         (Her first book came out in 1920)

        1926         (She divorced in 1926. Her mother died)

        1952         (The Mousetrap opened in 1952)

2. Match the words in two columns to make up word combinations.

1.painfully             a) tragedy

2.grief                    b) breakdown

3.waist                   c) loved

4.hospital               d) stricken

5.later                     e) dispensary

6.elderly                 f) shy

7.double                 g) career

8.much                   h) husband

9.nervous               i) length

10.beloved             j) spinster

Keys:1f, 2d, 3i, 4e, 5g, 6j, 7a, 8c, 9b, 10h.

3.Match phrases with similar meanings.

1.painfully shy

a) последующие романы

2.waist-length golden hair

b) двойная трагедия


c) нервный срыв

4.later career

d) болезненно застенчивая

5.subsequent novels

e) горькие чувства

6.an elderly spinster

f) с головой ушла в работу

7.double tragedy

g) любимый муж

8.nervous breakdown

h) золотистые волосы до пояса

9.mysteriously disappeared

i) старая дева

10.bitter feelings

j) дальнейшая карьера

11.buried herself in her work

k) убитыe горем

12.beloved husband

l) загадочно исчезла

Keys: 1d), 2h), 3k), 4j), 5a), 6i), 7b), 8c), 9l), 10e), 11f), 12g)

4. Complete the sentences with the missing words from the text.

1.A. Cristie is a famous_______writer.

2.She was a painfully_______woman.

3.She grew into a______girl with______golden hair.

4.She was______by her mother.

5.When her father died she and her mother were______.

6.During World War I she worked at a______.

7.It helped her in her______career.

8.Her first marriage was unhappy and in 1926 they______.

9.That year was a______tragedy in her life because her______mother died.

10.Agatha suffered a nervous______.

11.”The Mousetrap” is the longest______show in the world.

12.She died______in 1976.


1. detective story

2. shy

3. sensitive, weist-length,

4. educated

5. grief-stricken

6. hospital dispensary

7. later

8. divorced

9. double, much-loved



12. peacefully

5. Choose the right variant from the text.

1. Agatha Christie was one of the most famous …story writer.

     a) adventure       b) romantic        c) detective

2. She was a painfully … woman.

     a) modest           b) shy                c) timid  

3. Agatha grew into a beautiful and … girl.

    a) sensible          b) sensitive        c) sincere

4. Her … loved mother died in 1926.

     a) many              b) a lot              c) much

5. Agatha suffered a nervous ….

     a) breakdown    b) breakout        c) breakthrough

6. Then she mysteriously ….

     a) divorced        b) disappeared   c) appeared

7. Agatha buried herself … her work.

     a) in                   b) at                   c) into

8. She always tried to stay … the limelight.

a) in                  b) out                 c) out of

6. Use other words to express the same.

     1.A. Christie is a well-known detective writer. (famous)

     2.Her mother taught her at home. (She was educated at home)

     3.She represented the Belgian detective H. Poirot in her first novel. (introduced)

     4.Miss Marple had never been married. (was a spinster)

     5.She had a nervous breakdown after her mother’s death. (suffered)

     6.Nobody could find her anywhere during 11 days. (went missing for)

     7.She wrote one of her best works. (masterpieces)

     8.She worked a lot. (buried herself in her work)

7.Put the auxiliaries was, had, or didn’t into the gaps.

1.Agatha Cristie_____born in 1890.

2.She_____educated at home.

3.She_____go to school.

4.While she_____working at the hospital, she learned about chemicals and poisons.

5.H. Poirot_____introduced in her first novel.

6.She_____found in a hotel in Harrogate, after she_____been missing for 11 days.

7.She_____stop writing while she_____suffering from a nervous breakdown.

8.“The Mousetrap”______written in the mid of the 20-th century

Post-Reading activity

1. Decide which of the following sentences True or False.

Agatha Christie is a famous English writer. (T)

She wrote more than 80 detective stories. (T)

She was the only child in her family. (F)

She was educated at a private school. (F)

The main hero of all her novels was Hercule Poirot. (F)

She was married more than once. (T)

She was found in a car after her mysterious disappearance. (F)

She lived more than 85 years. (T)

2.Begin questions with How

1.A. Christie wrote 79 novels and several plays.(How many works did she write?)

2.She was not a single child in her family. (How many children were there in her family?)

3.She didn’t go to school. (How was she educated?)

4.Agatha was 11 when her father died. (How old was Agatha when her father died?)

5.When her father died she and her mother were grief-stricken. (How did she and her mother suffer     father’s death?)

6.She went missing for 11 days after a nervous breakdown. (How long did she go missing?)

7.A. Christie’s play The Mousetrap has been running over 50 years on world’s theatre stages. (How long has The Mousetrap been running on world’s theatre stages?)

8.A. Christie was 85 when she died peacefully in 1976. (How old was A. Christie when she died?)

3.Prepare these questions for discussion in pairs.


Write a story about your favourite writer. Include the information you’ve learnt from the text about Agatha Christie:

-when and where he/she was born

-what was his/her family like

-when he/she began his/her career

-which of his/her works  are the most famous

-why this writer is your favourite


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