Lesson plan overview

This English lesson plan is suitable for pre-intermediate and low-intermediate students. It is dedicated to Thanksgiving and trains all 4 skills – listening, reading, speaking and writing. You can combine it with the lesson “Self-care“, where the topic of gratitude is touched upon, or the worksheet “Phrasal verbs: parties and celebrations“. For more advanced students, you can try the FREE lesson plan “Black Friday“. After this lesson, you can try: “Three Kings’ Day”

After an initial discussion about Thanksgiving, students work on pre-listening vocabulary (feast, marching band, float) by matching the words to the photos given.

Video: Students watch a video “Your favorite Thanksgiving traditions explained“. And complete 2 tasks. First they match the years to the event they refer to and then they complete the transcript of the video with the words given.

Vocabulary extension: Students look at a few verbs from the video (pardon, spare, date back, take place) and match them to their definitions. Next, they work on the typical Thanksgiving dishes (turkey, mashed potatoes, pecan pie, etc.) and talk about the traditional festive dishes in their countries.

Functional language: Students learn different ways to say “thank you” and “you are welcome” by putting the phrases given in the correct category (e.g. thank you for having my back, I appreciate it, don’t mention it, no worries). They practice with a few role-play situations and after that they are asked to come up with their own situations.

Speaking and writing: Students are asked to talk about and write a short description of a well-known holiday from their country. A few useful phrases are given to help them. The lesson wraps up with a few conversation questions. The printable conversation cards provide an additional opportunity to speak about the topic of Thanksgiving and to practice the target vocabulary from this lesson.

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Teacher’s lesson plan

Student’s worksheet

Student’s interactive PDF

Conversation cards PDF

Pre-class activities

To send the pre-class activities to your students, copy the link below. ‎

Vocabulary matching


The first time you watch the video, pay special attention to the correct pronunciation of the following words:

Just like a modern Thanksgiving dinner, the feast in Plymouth in 1621 contained a wondrous variety of foods.
Amongst the items eaten that day included deer, fish, lobster and clams.
It’s a bird that is native to North America, and therefore it seems proper that it would be the main course for such an all-American holiday.
This is a bread-based dish mixed with a blend of herbs and spices.
Dessert brings even more traditional Thanksgiving staples.

Comprehension questions

In-class activities

Teacher’s lesson plan
Student’s worksheet

Conversation cards PDF

Student’s interactive PDF

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