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Eating Up Idioms


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Subjects

  • Arts & Humanities
    --Language Arts
    --Visual Arts
  • Health
    --Nutrition

Grade

  • 3-5
  • 6-8
  • 9-12

Brief Description

During National Nutrition Month (March), or any other time of year, feed your students a diet of food idioms.

Objectives

Students

  • learn that idioms are combinations of words that mean something different than the surface meaning of those words.
  • explain the meaning of some food-related idioms.
  • illustrate the "fun" (literal) meaning of some common idioms.

Keywords

National Nutrition Month, nutrition, idiom, idiomatic, food, fruits, vegetables

Materials Needed

  • a list of food-related idioms (provided); you might write the idioms on a chart before presenting the activity
  • art/drawing supplies

Lesson Plan

Chances are you've never stopped to realize how many English-language idioms relate to food. This activity is a fun one to do during National Nutrition Month (March) or any time of year.

Write on a chart a few of the statements below. All of them contain an idiom related to food. Call on students to read the sentences and to explain the special meanings of the idioms in them.

idiom

An idiom is a phrase with a special meaning that might not be understood by looking at the meanings of the words that comprise it.

  • Thomas needed money for the movie so he had to butter up his father.
  • That college only accepts students who are the cream of the crop.
  • She turned as red as a beet when I caught her cheating.
  • Marco acted as cool as a cucumber on the day of the big race.
  • Jake said the test would be a piece of cake.
  • Maybe he was telling the truth, or maybe he was full of beans.
  • At the bake sale, my mother's brownies sold like hotcakes.
  • People were packed in like sardines on the subway train.
  • My mother works hard to bring home the bacon.
  • My father stopped to chew the fat with our neighbor, Mr. Jones.
  • Oresha and I went to the game to egg on our team.
  • My aunt's ring looked expensive, but she got it for peanuts.
  • The puppies in the cage were going bananas.
  • Stephanie is the apple of her father's eye.
  • My teacher told me I had to beef up my report on George Washington.
  • Jack Traxel is the big cheese at the cable company.
  • It was so cold I practically froze my buns off.
  • Even though Paul worked at the job, he wasn't able to cut the mustard.
  • I opened my big mouth at the wrong time, so now I have to eat my words.
  • So that's the problem in a nutshell.
  • Books by that author are not my cup of tea.
  • The vase was broken so there was no use crying over spilled milk.
  • The little Jackson boy is a bad egg.
  • I was embarrassed to give my piano teacher such a cheesy gift.
  • We should have known the half-baked idea would not work.
  • Please don't spill the beans about the surprise party.
  • The souped-up car made so much noise that our neighbors called to complain.

After discussing the idiom phrases, assign a phrase to each student. Encourage them to have fun "playing with the words" as they illustrate the meaning of each idiom. For example...

The illustration of the sentence Thomas needed money for the movie so he had to butter up his father might show Thomas using a basting brush to cover his father in butter as his father reaches into his wallet to pull out a $10 bill.

The illustration of the sentence She turned as red as a beet when I caught her cheating might show a student whose head is in the shape of a red beet when she gets caught cheating.
Use students' illustrations to create a class book or a bulletin board.

See additional idiom resources in this EducationWorld lesson plan:
Understanding Idioms Is a Piece of Cake

Assessment

Did students' illustrations show the literal meaning of the idioms presented?

Lesson Plan Source

EducationWorld.com

Submitted By

Gary Hopkins

National Standards

FINE ARTS: Visual Arts
GRADES K - 4
NA-VA.K-4.3 Choosing and Evaluating A Range of Subject Matter, Symbols, and Ideas
NA-VA.K-4.6 Making Connections Between Visual Arts and Other Disciplines
GRADES 5 - 8
NA-VA.5-8.3 Choosing and Evaluating A Range of Subject Matter, Symbols, and Ideas
NA-VA.5-8.6 Making Connections Between Visual Arts and Other Disciplines
GRADES 9 - 12
NA-VA.9-12.3 Choosing and Evaluating A Range of Subject Matter, Symbols, and Ideas
NA-VA.9-12.6 Making Connections Between Visual Arts and Other Disciplines

LANGUAGE ARTS: English
GRADES K - 12
NL-ENG.K-12.2 Reading for Understanding
NL-ENG.K-12.3 Evaluation Strategies
NL-ENG.K-12.12 Applying Language Skills

See more Lesson Plans of the Day in our Lesson Plan of the Day Archive. (There you can search for lessons by subject too.)

For additional language arts/reading lesson plans, see these Education World resources:

For additional health lesson plans, see these Education World resources:

Education World®
Copyright© 2006 Education World

03/09/2006



 

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