This is an updated version of the Holiday Expressions lesson plan. Now the expressions are contextualised in three short texts. Download the handouts below:
Image credit: coar56ar.com
Follow me on twitter @
This is a warmer/short conversation activity for use with lower-level students (A1-B1) to refresh past simple question formation. Download the handout below:
Unscramble the questions, and then ask them to your teacher:
- summer your how holidays were?
- did where go you?
- there you did do what?
- it did like you?
Ask and answer the questions in pairs.
Complete the questions with a question word:
|Where What (x2) How (x2) Who|
- ___________ was the weather like?
- ___________ did you stay?
- ___________ did you get there?
- ___________ did you go on holiday with?
- ___________ long did you go for?
- ___________ was the best thing you did there?
Match the questions (1-6) with the answers (a-f)
- We went surfing, it was so much fun!
- In a nice little hotel next to the beach.
- We took a plane to the island and then we rented a car.
- We went for 6 days.
- It was lovely, it only rained once.
- I went with my Mum, Dad and little brother.
Ask the questions to your teacher, then to your partner.
Then write 2 new questions for your partner:
|Verb in base form
|What||Was||The best thing||You||Verb in past simple
- How were your summer holidays?
- Where did you go?
- What did you do there?
- Did you like it?
While students are performing the speaking task, be sure to help them with pronunciation of the questions, focusing specifically on weak forms and sentence stress:
Where did you go?
| weə dɪdjə ɡəʊ | – Connected speech and weak form “you”
What was the weather like?
| ˈwɒt wəz ðə ˈweðə ˈlaɪk | – weak forms of “was” and “the”. Sentence stress on “what” “weather” and “like”
If students have photos of their holiday readily available (on a smartphone or tablet) let them show their partner while they describe their holiday.
Follow me on twitter @
Just a quick note…
Before you use these materials… We’ve created a new podcast aimed at B2+ level English students and teachers alike. You can listen for free at our SoundCloud page below. You can download teacher’s notes to accompany them from our Facebook page or from this blog. All comments and feedback welcome! Give us a like and a share.
Or listen on Spotify:
This is a vocabulary and conversation activity for higher levels (high B2+) on the subject of travelling. Download the student handout and powerpoint below:
Holiday Destinations – Powerpoint
UPDATE: I’ve combined this lesson plan with the “My Ideal Holiday” lesson.
In pairs students discuss the following questions
- What’s the best place you’ve ever visited?
- How often do you travel?
- Do you have any trips planned for the near future?
Give out the handout. Have students read the texts and decide who they are most similar to. Let them share their ideas in pairs or small groups and give reasons for their answers.
Have students match the expressions in bold with the definitions at the bottom.
- get the travel bug.
- live it up
- catch some rays
- travel light
- at the crack of dawn
- savour local delicacies
- sit and watch the world go by
- feel right at home
- experience a culture shock
- watch one’s back
- a culture vulture
- have everything planned out
- travel on a shoestring
- see how the mood takes one
- off the beaten track
Students complete the sentences with the correct expressions:
Students discuss the following questions in groups of 3.
- Do you travel light? If so, how do you decide what to pack?
- You have to watch your back when you’re travelling alone; there are a lot of dangerous people out there. Do you agree?
- Which place that you’ve visited was the biggest culture shock? Where did you feel right at home? Why?
- Do you normally travel on a shoestring or live it up? How can you save money while travelling? Would you consider hitchhiking or couchsurfing?
- Have you got the travel bug? Have you got itchy feet? If so, where’s next on the list?
- Do you like to pack a lot in/have a full plate or see how the mood takes you when you’re travelling?
- What’s the perfect place to sit and watch the world go by for you?
- How important is it for you to catch some rays when you’re on holiday?
- How do you choose a holiday destination? Are you a culture vulture?
Holiday Destinations Discussion
Project the powerpoint, tell students that they are going to choose a holiday destination in their groups from a number of popular places around the world.
Show them the second slide and have them copy down the different expressions:
|I’d like to go||I wouldn’t like to go||I wouldn’t mind|
|Right up my street
My dream destination
It’s on my list
… really floats my boat
|Not my cup of tea
I don’t see the appeal of…
It just doesn’t do it for me.
…isn’t really my thing
… don’t/doesn’t really float my boat
… are a big no-no for me.
Go on then, I’ll give it a go.
I’ll try anything once!
Then have students discuss the different holiday destinations in groups and decide on one which the whole group would like to visit.
Students could write a CAE/CPE style Proposal composition about the process of deciding on a holiday destination for the group. They could evaluate the different merits and drawbacks of three of the destinations from the powerpoint and recommend one as the destination for an end of year trip.
Alternatively they could write a review of a holiday to one of the places.
Image credit: travelnotings.com
Follow me on twitter @
This is my version of the classic “Find someone who…” speaking and ice-breaking activity designed for teenagers for the first class after the summer holidays. I’ve also added a version for adults.
Download the handout here:
Find someone who – teenagers
Warmer – Guess my holiday
Students get 20 questions to guess where the teacher went on holiday.
Allow students to ask you more questions to find out some information about the holiday.
Project the handout onto the board. Students must circulate, speaking to all their classmates until they have found someone who did all of the listed activities during the summer holidays. When they find someone who has done one of the activities they must also ask them for some details and record them in the details column.
Before starting model past simple yes/no questions on the board:
Went to another continent:
Did you go to another continent?
Also model questions for details:
Where did you go?
What did you do there?
What did you eat?
The winner is the first person to find someone people who have done each of the things on the list or prove that nobody has done them by speaking to everyone.
Try to speak to everyone in the class. You must find someone who did the following things in their summer holidays.
Find someone who…
|Went to a different continent|
|Tried some new food|
|Went to a summer camp|
|Had a party|
|Tried a new activity|
|Visited another part of Spain|
|Saw an amazing monument|
|Didn’t leave Catalonia|
|Earned some money|
|Bought some new clothes|
|Went on holiday without their family|
|Visited a famous city|