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ESL Lesson Idea: Describing Clothes


By the end of the lesson, your students will be able to describe what people are wearing by identifying clothes and colors.

  • Student Handouts: Types of Clothes and Describing Clothes
  • Pictures of clothes from magazines or catalogs, or from the collection of laminated pictures you will find at the Kirkland/Northshore Learning Center.
  • Bring different colored clothes from home: pants, shirts, socks, shoes, dresses, skirts, ties, etc.
  • Warm-up: Show different clothes to the students. Ask your students: “What is this?”. Write the names on the board.
  • Ask students about colors they know. (Brown, blue, red, etc.) Write the colors on the board.
  • Talk about the Types of Clothes as shown on the handout, and find examples. Ask "Who is wearing a belt today?", "a t-shirt?" etc.
  • Using the magazine pictures, ask students to describe what the people are wearing. Write the words on the board. For example: She is wearing a blue blouse and black pants. Practice reading the sentences aloud with the students.
  • Using the handout Describing Clothes, have students practice the conversation in pairs. Variation: Substitute for the written description a description of what your partner is wearing.
  • Game ideas:
    • Put chairs in a circle. The teacher stands in the middle. The teacher writes on the board, “Switch seats if you are wearing brown shoes.” The teacher says… Students who are wearing brown shoes switch seats. The teacher tries to find a seat while the switching is going on. The person who is left stands in the middle and says, “Switch seats if you are wearing ____.”
    • Picture Race: Use pictures of clothes from the collection you brought in. Assign 10 pictures to groups of about 5 students sitting in a circle. Working individually, they will compete to write brief descriptions of as many pictures as they can in 5 minutes. Then share the results with the class.
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