In the Create A Menu ESL project, students invent (and describe) the dishes on offer at a restaurant.
Students can do this activity individually or in pairs. You will need a piece of plain paper/card for each student/pair.
Depending on the level of your class, you may want to pre-teach relevant vocabulary (starters, entrées, mains, salads, deserts etc.). You could also share some real-life menus as examples.
- Students note down the dishes they want to include on their menu.
- Optionally, they can then create a short description of each dish, using the target language (this should definitely be included at intermediate level).
- When they have finished, check the students work (and/or use peer correction).
- The students then write up their work on the paper/card in the style of a real menu. Optionally, they can decorate it with colours and pictures (especially with kids).
- Ideally, follow on from the Create A Menu ESL project with the Classroom Restaurant activity. Students can get even more value from their menus by actually using them in a real-life situation.
- When you are finished with them, you could display the menus on the wall. Or in a kids classroom, hang them on strings so they can be read more easily.
Do the Create A Menu ESL project to practise food vocabulary with kids and beginners. For intermediate students, writing descriptions of each dish is a great way to expand their knowledge of adjectives. More advanced students should even include some adverb-adjective collocations, for example ‘freshly squeezed’.
As noted above, the Classroom Restaurant activity is a great way follow-on activity. After becoming familiar with the relevant vocabulary by creating a menu, they can then practise it orally, as well as language structures used when ordering.
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