The fantastic people at InformationisBeautiful.net have just done a trawl of 22,000 horoscopes and come up with this visualisation of the most common words used for each star sign. So do they really all just say the same thing? Have a look at the chart….
There are obvious classroom uses here….. though I’m not sure how the topic would play in every cultural setting!
But possibly a lesson where learners give their opinions on horoscopes, read some sample horoscopes (freely available from most newspaper websites, yahoo, msn and the like). Decide which are the most “accurate”, whether they agree or not with their star sign predictions.
There are plenty of opportunities for language work – personality vocabulary associated with star signs – and of course language associated with predictions and the like. Though interestingly when I took a look at some sample horoscopes from yahoo, they don’t actually make a lot of predictions, they tend to make statements like “Today is a good day to get closer to someone important to you.” I guess this is because actual predictions are too easily proved inaccurate!
There’s a nice overview of star signs and personality traits at www.paranormality.com/zodiac.
Learners could even do a “five most common words search” through the horoscope texts before comparing their findings with the chart from IIB.
And of course we can do some astrological predictions writing! If learners have looked at personalities associated with star signs, then they can “tailor” their predictions appropriately. Higher levels can try to avoid the more predictive language and try to make their efforts as vague and fulfillable as possible…
After which, they could compare their predictions with the one given below – the InformationIsBeautiful.net “meta-prediction”: