Lesson plan

What's an Idiom?

Does the confusion of learning idioms “add fuel to the fire” for your students? Your students will “go back to the drawing board” in this lesson, as they consider the literal and figurative meaning of common idioms.
Grade Subject View aligned standards

Students understand that idioms are figurative language and not to be taken literally.

(5 minutes)
  • Have students complete the What is an Idiom? worksheet.
  • Define idiom as a saying that has a meaning different than the literal meaning of the phrase.
  • Explain to students that in this lesson they will identify idioms and explain their meanings in a text.
(10 minutes)
  • Have students read the directions and look at the example of the Common Idioms worksheet.
  • Next, have students discuss the two illustrations and their differences.
  • Remind students that idioms are phrases that have a different meaning from the actual words that are used.
  • Have students use the “under the weather” idiom in a sentence and write it in the space provided on the worksheet.
(10 minutes)
  • Have students complete the Common Idioms worksheet, pages 2 and 3, in pairs or small groups.
  • Students will follow the directions on the sheet and use each other to come up with illustrations for the idioms they select from the list.
  • Remind students that after creating their illustrations they should proceed to page 3 and complete the worksheet according to the directions.
  • Remind students to work with their partners or group to complete this assignment.
(20 minutes)
  • Tell students that they will work alone to complete this part of the lesson.
  • Have students complete A Figure of Speech by following the directions on the worksheet.
  • Tell students that they will be required to think of a meaning for each idiom on the worksheet.
  • Advise students to consider the illustration of the figurative meaning first and then the literal meaning.
  • On the back of this sheet, students should write a minimum of five idioms that they know and their literal meanings.
  • Remind students that this is an independent assignment and should they need help they should ask you and not each other.
  • Enrichment: Allow advanced students to create a mini comic using idioms.
  • Support: Allow struggling students to work in partner pairs.
(10 minutes)
  • Have students complete the What do you mean…Idiom-Assessment worksheet.
  • Tell students that they have 10 minutes to complete this assignment alone.
(5 minutes)
  • Recap today’s lesson.
  • Have students explain in their own words what an idiom is and provide examples.
  • Allow students to ask questions that they still have about idioms.

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