Talking About Food

My students love to talk about food. In fact, I think that’s true of almost all Chinese people. I hate to stereotype, but whether I’m talking in English or Chinese, a staggering percentage of all conversations I have in this country involve food.

The key to teaching English as best you can is getting the students interested, and so the perfect lesson for teaching some speaking skills is one that matches the interests of all the students in the class.

I like to start this lesson off with these three worksheets – Food 1, Food 2, Cooking Methods – which teach some basic but useful vocabulary. To make it fun, put the class into groups and have them work together to categorize the vocabulary.

After this, I’ll talk about recipes. Introduce the concept of a recipe and explain “preparation,” “ingredients,” and so forth. I like to use a bread recipe because I actually do cook a lot of bread and the recipes tend to be quite simple. You can find millions of them on Google.

After this, I show the students this video:


I’ll then ask my students to summarize the video. They should be able to explain the basic process. As my students are all Chinese, they’re pretty familiar with the process shown in the video. For students from other countries it *may* be better to use a food native to their culture in order to make it easier.

After this, I’ll give the students a chance to explain a recipe they know how to cook. For my Chinese students that’s usually “stir-fried egg and tomato,” but some of them are more adventurous.

Good luck! If you used this lesson in your class, please comment below or share the post with other teachers.

Head Teacher
I'm the founder and editor of Beatdom Literary Journal, author of Scientologist! William S. Burroughs and the 'Weird Cult' and World Citizen: Allen Ginsberg as Traveller. I'm also a teacher and operate the popular website, TED-IELTS.

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