Jeff Bezos is well-known around the world as the founder and CEO of Amazon, one of the largest and most successful companies to emerge from the digital age. As one of the richest people on the planet, his influence has extended well beyond the business world, and into wider society. His leadership and innovative approach have revolutionized the way we shop, read books, and consume media. From humble beginnings as an online bookstore, Amazon has grown into a global behemoth, providing millions of people with jobs and changing the face of commerce as we know it. For ESL teachers and their students, understanding the impact of Jeff Bezos and Amazon can shed light on important topics such as entrepreneurship, innovation, and global interconnectedness.
Vocabulary To Discuss
- Founder – a person who establishes a business or organization.
- Ceo – Chief Executive Officer, the highest-ranking official in a company or organization responsible for making major decisions and managing overall operations.
- Successful – achieving or having achieved success.
- Influence – the power to affect or sway someone or something.
- Leadership – the action of leading a group of people or an organization.
- Innovative – introducing new ideas; original and creative in thinking.
- Revolutionized – completely change (something) so that it is much better or more modern.
- Behemoth – something enormous in size or power.
- Commerce – the activity of buying and selling goods and services.
25 ESL Questions About Jeff Bezos
1. Who is Jeff Bezos, and what do you know about him?
2. Do you think Jeff Bezos deserves to be one of the richest people in the world? Why or why not?
3. What do you think Jeff Bezos’ strengths are as a business leader?
4. How do you think Jeff Bezos has changed the way we buy and sell things online?
5. Do you believe that Jeff Bezos can solve some of the world’s biggest problems through his philanthropic efforts? Why or why not?
6. What do you think about the working conditions for Amazon employees? Are they fair?
7. Do you think Jeff Bezos has too much power? Why or why not?
8. How would you feel if you met Jeff Bezos in person? What would you say to him?
9. Do you prefer shopping online or in stores? Why?
10. Do you think Jeff Bezos should continue to invest in space travel with his company Blue Origin? Why or why not?
11. What do you think about Amazon’s impact on the environment, such as the amount of packaging used for deliveries?
12. Do you think Jeff Bezos will be remembered as one of the most significant figures in business history? Why or why not?
13. How has Amazon affected small businesses around the world?
14. Do you believe that Jeff Bezos should be paying more taxes? Why or why not?
15. Which Amazon product do you use the most, and why?
16. Do you think Jeff Bezos is a good role model for young entrepreneurs? Why or why not?
17. What do you think about Jeff Bezos’ purchase of The Washington Post?
18. What do you think Amazon could do to improve its reputation in terms of worker treatment and environmental impact?
19. Do you agree with Jeff Bezos’ philosophy of always putting the customer first? Why or why not?
20. What kind of impact do you think Jeff Bezos has had on the global economy?
21. Do you think that Jeff Bezos’ marital affairs have affected his company’s reputation? Why or why not?
22. What do you think Jeff Bezos could do better in terms of philanthropy?
23. Do you think Jeff Bezos has made any major mistakes as a CEO? What were they?
24. What do you think about Jeff Bezos stepping down as Amazon CEO?
25. Do you think Jeff Bezos will still be involved with Amazon even after he steps down? Why or why not?
ESL Writing Questions About Jeff Bezos
Instructions: Write 50-100 Words Per Question:
1. If you could spend a day with Jeff Bezos, what would you ask him? Write a list of 10 questions and share them with the class.
2. Imagine you are a journalist and you have been asked to write a profile about Jeff Bezos. Conduct research about his life, achievements, and impact on the world. Write a detailed article about him and share it with the class.
3. Jeff Bezos once said, “I knew that if I failed I wouldn’t regret that, but I knew the one thing I might regret is not trying.” Do you agree with this statement? Why or why not? Write a persuasive essay explaining your opinion and present it to the class.
Biography Analysis: Provide an article or biography about Jeff Bezos for students to read. Afterward, have them answer comprehension questions or engage in a class discussion about his life, accomplishments, and impact on the business world. This activity promotes reading comprehension, critical thinking, and oral communication skills.
Group Research and Presentation: Assign small groups to research different aspects of Jeff Bezos’s entrepreneurial journey, such as his early career, the founding of Amazon, or his space exploration company, Blue Origin. Each group can then present their findings to the class, encouraging collaborative research, English language use, and presentation skills.
Entrepreneurship Vocabulary: Compile a list of vocabulary words related to entrepreneurship and business, such as “innovation,” “disruption,” “e-commerce,” etc. Have students match the words to their definitions or use them in sentences to reinforce understanding. This activity promotes vocabulary retention and application in a business context.
Discussion Questions: Provide a set of discussion questions about Jeff Bezos and his entrepreneurial journey. Students can discuss these questions in pairs or small groups, expressing their opinions, sharing ideas, and practicing their speaking and listening skills. This activity encourages critical thinking and the ability to express thoughts in English.
Biography Writing: Ask students to write a short biography of Jeff Bezos, highlighting his major achievements and contributions. Encourage them to use appropriate grammar, vocabulary, and sentence structures while conveying information accurately. This activity helps develop writing skills, research abilities, and English language proficiency.
Business Ethics Debate: Divide the class into two groups and assign them opposing viewpoints on a business ethics topic related to Jeff Bezos or Amazon, such as worker treatment or corporate responsibility. Students can research and prepare arguments, and then engage in a debate, showcasing their critical thinking, persuasive skills, and the ability to articulate opinions in English.
Remember to adapt these activities to suit the proficiency level of your students and provide any necessary support or scaffolding. These Jeff Bezos-themed ESL activities offer opportunities for language development while exploring the life and achievements of a notable entrepreneur.