You are here

Chalk and cheese

Average: 3.2 (27 votes)

This activity looks at ways of making comparative forms by asking learners to compare things that are usually thought of as opposites.

Paul Kaye

It can be used to revise structures or to present them as part of an inductive approach. It also encourages learners to be creative. The activity would be suitable for an elementary to intermediate level.


Make a copy of this worksheet for each student

Worksheet 54k


  • Dictate the complete word pairs on the handout (pairs 1 – 5) to learners. If they are low level give them time to check their spelling in groups before moving on. Draw the learners’ attention to the opposites in the pairs.
  • Give the handout to the learners, giving them time to check their spelling again. Ask them to complete the next three pairs (numbers 6 – 8) with their own ideas. Emphasise that there are many possible ways to complete them. Discuss answers.
  • Ask learners to add one more pair of their own (number 9), and then share that with the class. Other learners can choose one they like and add it as number 10.
  • Use the first pair as an example. Write it on the board and ask learners what the difference is between men and women. Elicit answers that use comparative forms, for example:
    • Men are stronger than women
    • Women are more sensitive than men
  • Try to get at least one example of –er than and one using more_____ than.
  • Ask learners in groups to write sentences comparing the other things in the pairs. Monitor for accuracy if this is one of your aims for the class.
  • Share ideas together. Ask learners to choose the best comparisons.
Language level
Language Level: 
Pre-intermediate: A2