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8 Speaking and Vocabulary Activities for Shopping

Shopping is one of those topics that easily engages students if you have good exercises at the right level. I’ve found it works really well with pictures as the pictures give contexts which are very familiar to most students.

1  Common expressions for shopping

This is an elementary ESL shopping expressions and vocabulary exercise for practicing language useful for talking about shopping. Shopping is a great topic for English language students  as it is universally accessible. Using pictures  gives context.

Click on the image or the link to download the printable PDF file.

Common expressions for shopping vocabulary matching activity.

Common expressions for shopping (PDF)

2  Common expressions for shopping 2

This is a slightly more advanced ESL shopping expressions and vocabulary exercise. I often like to make some pictures similar with subtle distinctions so students have to use their critical thinking skills.

Shopping vocabulary and expressions matching activity.

Common expressions for shopping 2(PDF)

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3  Brainstorming icebreaker for shopping:meanings of colors

A really nice breaker for shopping is brainstorming the meanings and associations of colors. This is a pretty fun and engaging way to start a class.

Brainstorming the meanings of colors classroom icebreaker.

Brainstorming the meanings of colors(PDF)

4 Talking about shopping

This is an elementary ESL speaking exercise for practicing language useful for talking about shopping. Shopping is a great topic for English language students  as it is universally accessible. Using pictures with the questions gives context. The vocabulary at the bottom of the page can be matched to the pictures as an icebreaker. Students can discuss and answer the questions in groups or in pairs.

ESL talking about shopping in a department store

Talking about shopping (PDF)

5 Fashion and shopping word map

This is an elementary brainstorming exercise that aims to elicit some vocabulary and warm up the students for a lesson about fashion and shopping.  Try to get as much vocabulary as possible on the word maps  from the students and then ask them to complete the questions at the bottom of the page. Then they can ask and answers questions in pairs or groups.

Fashion and  shopping word map(PDF)

6 Talking shopping 2

This is a really easy elementary exercise for pretty low level English language learners to talk about shopping. Students match the words and expressions to the pictures and then have short conversations.

Elementary shopping vocabulary and conversation activity

Talking shopping 2 (PDF)

7 Fashion choices and preferences brainstorm and speaking

This is a more advanced  exercise for students to talk about shopping choices and preferences. Students match the words and expressions to the pictures and then have short conversations. Once again try to get as much vocabulary as possible on the word maps  from the students and then ask them to complete the questions at the bottom of the page. Then they can ask and answers questions in pairs or groups. The students also need to understand how to use “Do you prefer…?” and “Would you rather…?”

Shopping and fashion choices and preferences brainstorm

Fashion choices and preferences brainstorm (PDF)

8 Common shopping conversations (with answers)

This is a fairly elementary exercise. It challenges students to understand the context of each picture and complete the speech bubbles.

Shopping conversation conversations and dialogues activity

Common  shopping conversations (PDF)

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