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Food as Realia in the Classroom

cryslThe internet has made finding realia so much easier. It’s pretty easy to pluck an authentic news story or find a relevant video clip from YouTube. But with the holidays around the corner and all of the traditional food that Americans eat on Thanksgiving and Christmas, it might be time to bring in some more interesting realia: food!

If you have pumpkin in your area, you can make pumpkin pie.  Or pumpkin cookies like in the picture above, since, in case you didn’t know, no one eats pumpkin outside the US. Students will love to try it! And many will think it is disgusting, so it can be pretty funny. You can integrate these food items into your curriculum in many ways. You could bring it in and have it be the start of a conversation or a discussion. If you’re in another country, you could have a debate about if local stores should sell American food.

You could also have your students make the food in class. This could be good practice for following directions if you have one student dictate the recipe to another who isn’t allowed to read it. It could even be a listening activity if you have a high tech classroom and access to videos from foodnetwork.com or marthastewart.com

Other classic American foods include: scrambled eggs, pancakes, cookies, fruit salad with marshmallows (ambrosia),  meatloaf and more. This activity is totally optional and might just be something you add to a end of class party. But food can be a fun realia in the classroom. So give it a try and don’t be afraid to bring in things that you think taste bad. Some people might like them.

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2 Responses to “Food as Realia in the Classroom”

  1. Making an Education YouTube Video (Part 1) | English, baby! Blog Says:

    […] old posts, I have explained a few ways to use YouTube videos in the classroom. They can be used in esl lessons about food. Students can also learn to use YouTube videos in their presentations or you can integrate them […]

  2. Making an Educational YouTube Video | English, baby! Blog Says:

    […] posts, I have explained a few ways to use YouTube videos in the classroom. They can be used in esl lessons about food. Students can also learn to use YouTube videos in their presentations or you can integrate them […]

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