ESL Discussion: Village Basketball Association in China

What happens in one of the smallest towns of one of the poorest regions in China? Was “a popular amateur basketball league” on your shortlist? Use this ESL discussion worksheet to talk about the Village Basketball Association.

The first time I saw Yao Ming playing basketball in America was the day I realized other countries did stuff, too. Hey, I was a little kid! And American… He was huge! I’m older now and foreign players in the NBA rarely shocks me anymore. I’ve also seen YouTube videos of what pro basketball looks like in the Balkans… It’s on my bucket list to attend a match there someday. In that time, basketball has swept over China and has even reached one of its poorest and smallest towns where they hold a grassroots amateur basketball league called the Cun BA (or Village Basketball Association). The whole of China tunes in to watch these amateurs go five on five out in the boonies. Use this ESL discussion worksheet to talk about it!

  • Warm-up question ideas: Explain a sport your country is good at, or an athlete with your nationality.
  • Watch the video once and answer the first comprehension question together (or watch the video again immediately and let the pairs answer this question together).
  • Look at the vocabulary words on the PDF before watching the video a second time.
  • Put students in pairs to answer the questions on the left.
  • Set up new pairs to complete the speaking activity on the right.

The link to the video:


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Ian Kime

Ian Kime

I have been teaching English abroad since receiving my CELTA certificate in Poland in 2018. I enjoy tracking my individual students’ development but love having lessons with big groups! Now that I teach online, I am accompanied by my sidekicks Olaf, Mała, Pirate and Bandit on a regular basis.

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