a scared person shaking with ghosts behind him and the word "idioms"

Idioms: Fear

Worksheet overview

This worksheet is dedicated to 12 idioms that are used when talking about fear. It includes plenty of communicative activities so that students can learn and practise them. The first activity introduces 6 idioms (e.g. scaredy-cat, a close shave, scream your head off). Students read a short dialogue, work out the meaning of the idioms and match them to their definitions. Then students complete 4 sentences with the correct idiom.

Next, students learn 6 more idioms (e.g. scared stiff, nerves of steel, afraid of your own shadow). Students read a short dialogue about a Halloween scare event and match the idioms to their definitions.Then students complete a multiple-choice exercise containing all 12 idioms.

The last 3 activities are focused on speaking: first, students answer a few questions given. Then they complete 5 sentences with their own ideas and use them to start a conversation. Lastly, students work in small groups and organise a Halloween scare event. They are asked to design a poster promoting the event, using idioms from the lesson.

This ESL worksheet, together with the conversation cards can be used in various classes in order to practise these fear-related idioms. It would work great as an addition to lessons about fear, taking risks, Halloween, danger.


Teacher’s lesson plan
Student’s worksheet

Student’s interactive PDF

This worksheet works well in combination with the following lesson plans

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