Activities For The Language Classroom

Activity 1:   An Awesome Trip!

Time:            35-40 minutes

Skill focus:   Writing / Speaking

Materials:    Pictures, Chart paper, Colour pens


Write as many adjectives as you can on a chart paper or on small pieces of paper.

Ask the students to get some pictures from their last trip or you could provide some coloured pictures of travel destinations.

Divide the students into groups of four to five each and ask each group to select one picture keeping their choice confidential.

Ask each group to create posters using adjectives to attract people to sign up for their destinations.

Ask the other groups to identify the destination on the basis of the descriptions in the poster. The focus should be on using the most appropriate words to describe places or activities, not just making the poster visually attractive.

Activity 2:   “It’s a Piece of Cake” – Fun with Idioms

Time:            30 minutes

Skill focus:   Speaking

Materials:    Handouts


Ask the students to work in groups of three.

Write an idiom on the board and ask the students if they know its meaning. Then draw their attention to how some expressions cannot be understood from the meanings of the individual words that comprise them.

Distribute handouts (sample given as follows) to the students, doing the example on the handout as a class activity. You could add more idioms to the ones given in the handout.

Inform the students that they should not speak the answers out aloud. Instead, tell them to write them down on a piece of paper. Once all group members have finished, they should discuss the answers among themselves.

Finally, ask each group to give the meaning of at least one idiom to check if they have got the answers right.

Sample Handout

Ask one student to read out the part of the man, another one to read the part of the woman, and a third to read the question. All students must attempt to answer.


1.         M:    How was your trip? I heard the weather was quite bad.

            W:    Oh yes. It’s raining cats and dogs there!

            What does the woman imply?

            a.      She saw cats and dogs running in the rain.

            b.      It was raining very heavily.

            c.      She did not have a good trip.

2.         M:    I told my boss to shut up this morning.

            W:    You’ve just shot yourself in the foot.

            What does the woman mean?

            a.      The man shot himself accidentally.

            b.      The boss deserved it.

            c.      The man has got himself into trouble.

3.         W:    Are you ready for the presentation?

            M:    Almost, but I’d like to pick your brain first.

            What does the man want the woman to do?

            a.      to tell him her ideas

            b.      to pick up something for him

            c.      to be quiet about something

4.         M:    Did you hear that loud bang?

            W:    Yes, I nearly jumped out of my skin.

            What does the woman mean?

            a.      She heard a sound.

            b.      She was very frightened.

            c.      The woman jumped up.

5.        M:    Let’s take a vacation in Malaysia.

            W:    That’s music to my ears.

            What does the woman think about Malaysia?

            a.      She likes the music there.

            b.      Going on a holiday to Malaysia is a great idea.

            c.      She wants to take some music on the vaction.

6.         M:    Could you help me with the project?

            W:    Sorry, but my hands are tied.

            What does the woman mean?

            a.      She is too busy to help.

            b.      She is unable to help.

                c.             She is not well enough to help.
Nupur Samuel is Assistant Professor at Ambedkar University Delhi. She is interested in English language teaching and assessment, teacher training, tests and materials development.