Why do we get hangry? (word blends/portmanteaus)

Lesson plan overview

This ESL plan is about getting hangry (hungry and angry at the same time) and other word blends, or portmanteau words. It would be most suitable for students at B2 level. Students learn expressions to say “I am very hungry“, and word blends such as staycation, glamping, edutainment, kidpreneur, and others. You can combine this lesson with “Superfoods”, or “Idioms: eating and drinking”.
Speaking: The lesson starts with an initial discussion about hunger and our mood. Students ask and answer 5 questions, which also revise vocabulary words such as grumpy, moody, irritable, fasting.
Functional language: Students learn phrases to say “I am very hungry” (I am starving, I am so hungry I can’t think straight, My belly is empty, I could eat a horse). Then students are tasked with creating a short dialogue and including 2 of the phrases.
Listening: Students watch a video called “Why do we get hangry?” and complete 2 different tasks. Then they discuss what they have learned from the video.
Vocabulary: Students learn different word blends, or portmanteau words, such as glamping, mompreneur, hacktivist, edutainment. First, they take a look at the words and the words that have been merged to create them, and match them to their definitions. Next, they complete a dialogue with 6 of the words. Lastly, they discuss 5 conversation questions with these words.
You can use the conversation cards for additional speaking practice with the word blends.

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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:

Scientists say being hangry, hungry, and angry at the same time is not just a made up slang term.
Once the brain realises there is a lack of glucose in the body, which we get from food, it may perceive it as life threatening. The body panics, stress hormones go up, and a brain chemical called neuropeptide Y is released.
… hunger from weight loss is the number one reason people tend to give up on a diet and gain it all back.

Comprehension questions

In-class activities

Teacher’s lesson plan
Student’s worksheet

Conversation cards PDF

Student’s interactive PDF

Additional resources

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