Drawing and colouring in the primary classroom

      Art is an important part of the young learners’ development at school and can also be part of their English learning. Colouring shouldn’t and needn’t however become simply a means to fill in time. Here we look at different ways to use colouring and drawing and to practise English at the same time.


      Creepy Crawlies

      This can be done over a series of lessons as part of an ongoing project, dedicating each lesson to a different insect, or otherwise as one lesson. Children love squeamish subjects so you may find that they want you to extend what you originally planned to do.

      You’ll find that insects are a great basis for teaching several language areas such as colours, numbers, food and body parts.

      My favourite day 1

      This is the first in a two part series. Here you have a few ideas on how to review days of the week, months of the year and dates while allowing children to personalise the lesson and allowing you to give them some invaluable cultural input.

      The second will focus on special days and birthdays in particular.

      Kings and Queens

      This is a topic which can be spread over a few lessons and one which covers several language areas including food, clothes, biographies, family trees and parties. It’s steeped in British culture as the Royal Family is an integral part of our identity and image abroad. The majority of the activities are linked through a fictitious King or Queen invented by the children themselves in pairs or small groups depending on the size of your class.


      • 10 and above


      Colours: What is pink ?

      This is a primary tip that helps you exploit the lesson plan Colours – What is pink? from the French CIEP* website, designed to assist foreign assistants teaching in France. It can be used by all assistants as the worksheets are in English. The lesson plan is inspired by the famous poem by Christina Rossetti ‘What is pink?’


      Drama with children 2

      Following on from Drama with children1 here are a few suggestions that will help you integrate drama into your classroom. Many of the activities are non-verbal but can be adapted at a later stage.


      Drama with children 1

      For young children and adults alike it can be intimidating to speak a foreign language in front of other people. Even five-year-olds can be scared of making mistakes and looking silly or it may just be that they are shy and don’t want to talk in class.

      One way of reaching these children is through drama. By giving roles to your pupils they can ‘hide’ behind the character and lose some of their inhibitions.


      The following ideas are ideal for a post-Christmas show and tell style sessions but can be equally adapted throughout the year. You will need to spend a couple of lessons on toys to introduce ‘favourite’ and for children to bring their toys in for the lesson after to talk about them.


      Six Blind Men And The Elephant

      This story is an adaptation of the famous poem by American poet John Godfrey Saxe (1816 - 1887) The Blind Men and the Elephant.

      Six blind men meet an elephant for the first time and each man touches a different part of the elephant and makes predictions about what the elephant is like. (See the story)

      English Clubs and Corners

      If you can use part of a classroom as your own or if you always use the same classroom, then find out about the possibility of displaying your pupils’ work on the wall. Not only does it give them huge satisfaction to see their poem, picture or poster on the wall it also provides a fun and interesting place to work in.

      Your school will probably want to make the most of your presence. Being a native speaker you can bring a lot to the children.

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