This packet includes 52 common idioms that students will often encounter in reading. I have provided a place for the students to illustrate the literal meaning of the idiom, along with space to write a sentence using the idiom and a place to write the figurative meaning of each idiom.
Do not be afraid to teach idioms. Idioms are a large part of our everyday speech. I use Todd Arnold’s books, “Parts”, “More Parts”, and “Even More Parts” to introduce idioms to students. These books are a fun way to help the students learn the difference between a figure of speech and the matching literal expression and meaning. The main character, Chip Block, is a young boy who is actually afraid of some of the things he is hearing about his body.
After reading the book, “Parts”, I introduce the concept of figurative language. Then, I read the next book, “More Parts”. I allow the students to pass around the Tedd Arnold books. I also use copies of “Scholastic Dictionary of Idioms”. I have bought three of these books over the years. This book has hundreds of idioms along with an example of a sentence that uses the idioms. Finally, it gives the literal meaning of the idiom. The students each choose one idiom from the ones provided. (I’ve also included one blank form for you to use for other idioms.) I always model on the board how to draw the Tedd Arnold character, which is really quite easy to draw. The reason I have the students use only the one character to illustrate the idiom is because the focus is then on the idiom and not on the character. The students then use this character to draw the idiomatic expression. The students write a sentence at the bottom of the page using the selected idiom. Finally, write the meaning of the idiom. Kids should color and outline their drawings.
The real value of this activity becomes evident only when all of the completed idioms are displayed upon the hall walls outside your classroom. In this way, your students will be exposed to many idioms at one time and will become more aware of the numerous idiomatic expressions used in the English language. Please note: The students may have to change the tense of the verb in the idiom when they write their sentences.