Choose a few words and have the children identify three synonyms for each word. Examples: happy, sad, dirty, clean, fast, slow, hot, cold, big, small
From your chosen words, have the children identify at least one opposite word. Example word: Clean Synonyms: neat, spotless, spic-and span, washed, tidy Antonyms: soiled, unclean, filthy, grubby, messy, sloppy, muddy, yucky
If any of the children speak more than one language, have them share how each word is said in another language.
Play Charades: Ask the children if there is a way to express these words without talking. Give a child a word or phrase that can be expressed through action. Examples: yawning can mean you’re tired, smiling can mean you're happy, waving can mean hello or good-bye, nodding your head can mean yes, shrugging your shoulder can mean “I don’t know.”
Nouns: Using parts of the body, discuss other non-human objects, plants, or animals that have parts described by the same word.
Hands of a clock Teeth of a comb Face of a clock Foot of a bed Eye of a storm, or potato Artichoke heart Spine of a book Ear of corn Limb of a tree Head of lettuce Trunk of an elephant Arms of a chair Body of work Legs of a table Nose of a plane Shoulder of a road
Have the children use a dictionary to find two meanings for each word. Example: EYE The organ of vision in man and animals (example: human eye) A hole in an instrument or tool (example: eye of needle)
Verbs: Using actions that the human body can perform discuss other non-human things that perform these actions described by these same words.
A river runs A flag waves Acid eats through metal A car hugs the road Time will tell Dress a wound Break a dollar, break a law Draw a crowd Thewind whistles
COMING SOON: Print some of the pictures from this site depicting figures of speech such as “Its raining cats and dogs” “Catching some Z's” “Wear you heart on your sleeve”. Show the picture and ask the children if they know what the picture is depicting and see if they know what the figure of speech really means. OR Give some examples of figure of speech and ask the kids to draw pictures of it. You can break the class into groups and have 3-4 children work on an illustration together and then have each group present their illustration to the class and see if the class can guess which idiom is being depicted.
Include some stories on the origin of some of the idioms. Many can be found at: Phrases.org
Create a story with some blanks where the children will fill in the blanks with the appropriate idiom.
Ask the children to think of other idioms that they use regularly. Have them write a story using at least five idioms.
30 examples of idioms: Raining cats and dogs Pull my leg Shake a leg Be all thumbs Be off the hook Be all ears Be on the ball Be on thin ice Don’t get all bent out of shape Catch some ZZZ’s Drag you feet Get off my back Get off on the wrong foot Get under my skin Get up on the wrong side of the bed Elbow grease Have a bee in your bonnet Have two left feet Have a green thumb Jump down one’s throat Let the cat out of the bag Open a can of worms Paint the town red Spill the beans Wear heart on sleeve Cost an arm and a leg Drive me up the wall Cat got your tongue Butterflies in my stomach Frog in my throat