Cartoons Interactive games
Cliparts Lesson plans
Exercises to print Listening
Idioms in songs Other resources
Illustrated idioms Videos / Animations
Interactive exercises  

Idioms and Phrases by topic :

And - Animals - Autumn -
Be quiet - Bees - Best - Body - Book - Brave new world - Break - Buildings - Business -
Clean - Colours - Clothes - Compare -
Death - Distance - Dog - Dozen -
Eggs - Emotions - Eggs - Emotions -

Fabric - Family - First - Fish - Food - For political campaigns - Friends -

Give - Gold / Golden - Ground -
Halloween - Happiness - Heart- Hell - Home / House -
Idioms of the world - Insects -
Knowledge -
Let me know - Life and Relationships - Love -

Materials - Money - Music -

News - Numbers -
One -
Pie - Politics -
Reptiles - Road - Roll - Rooms -
School - Shapes - Shopping - Single, double and triple - Sleep - Snakes - Songs - Sports - Sun -
Talking - Theater, Dance, & Opera - Time - Tools - Travelling -
Units of measure -
Water - Whistle - Winter - Worms -

(Updated on 16/08/2012)




Sayings and Proverbs - Cliches
+ The VOCABULARY pages

"To kick the bucket"



Cliparts :


Illustrated idioms :





  • Idioms of the World - Part II
    "After reading the original Idioms of the World piece on Hotel Club the team of translators at Comtec started discussing their favourite funny foreign phrases and realised that there were loads more to share. So after much debate and deliberation they narrowed these down to their 10 favourites, in Idioms of the World 2!" 




  • Rolls off the tongue
    "Take a look at the cartoon and try to guess the idiom being illustrated. It shows both the literal and figurative meaning of the idiomatic expression.
    We'll be posting new cartoons weekly..."


  • Cut the mustard
    = "To succeed; to come up to expectations."


    Perfect face dimensions measured :
    - Shania Twain: The perfect face?
    - Angelina Jolie does not cut the mustard


    Today, 'can't cut the mustard' is usually 'can't cut it' or 'can't hack it'.
    A recent variant on 'too old to cut the mustard' is 'if you can't cut the mustard, you can lick the jar'.


  • 1000 images on the tip of my tongue (
    - Des expressions expliquées à l'aide d'animations + AUDIO
    - Cliquer sur ACTIVITIES, puis CARTOONS






Listening :

  • 'As American as Apple Pie' - Text + Audio + Video
    "The saying “as American as apple pie” describes things that represent the best of American culture.
    People use this expression when talking about things like blue jeans, baseball and rock-n-roll music. But why use apple pie?"

  • 'You're Giving Me the Creeps!' - Text + Audio
    "You're giving me the ...!" The jitters, the creeps, the willies, the heebie-jeebies, goose bumps, butterflies, and a heart attack ...
    you can give all these things to other people. Are they good or bad? Read on to find out!"


  • Don't Be Caught With Your Pants Down - Text + Audio
    "Are you too big for your boots? Do you often fly by the seat of your pants?
    Learn what these clothing expressions mean and so many others.
    You may be excited to get started but keep your shirt on! Be patient.
    All you have to do is click on this episode of Words and Their Stories."


  • A Halloween Special: The Devil is Everywhere - AUDIO + SCRIPT - 31 October 2014
    "Today we take you to the Dark Side. (insert evil laugh here) We teach expressions that involve the king of evil – the devil.
    Read on to learn how to “speak of the devil”, “to play devil’s advocate” and to ”make a deal with the devil.”



  • Words and Their Stories: Nose and Ear Expressions
    "The answer is as clear as the nose on your face."
    "Read, listen and learn English with this story. Double-click on any word to find the definition in the Merriam-Webster Learner's Dictionary."


    Words and Their Stories: All About Eyes
    "Read, listen and learn English with this story. Double-click on any word to find the definition in the Merriam-Webster Learner's Dictionary."


  • Words and Their Stories: Hold Your Horses!
    "Some expressions straight from the horse’s mouth...
    Read, listen and learn English with this story. Double-click on any word to find the definition in the Merriam-Webster Learner's Dictionary."

  • BBC Podcast: The English We Speak
    "a weekly podcast from BBC Learning English which looks at a different everyday English phrase or piece of slang in a fun three-minute programme. You can subscribe to the podcast here."

  • Idioms 4 You
    English Idioms and Idiomatic Expressions including definitions, explanations, conjugations, scenarios and audio.

    Since launching the site, Robert Ross has added many fine illustrations.

    "to rest on your laurels"

  • Idioms, Slang, Phrasal Verbs, Colloquialisms,
    Cliches, and Proverbs, with Context Examples (about 700)


Other resources :

  • From Monkeys to Potatoes - Text + Audio + Video
    "On today’s program we will talk about several very common expressions. Even though these expressions use simple language,
    English learners may find them difficult to understand. In fact, native English speaking children often have trouble, too."







  • Rhyme Phrases with a Hiccup (
    "This is a list of words and phrases that have a rhyming pattern similar to that of "eye in the sky",
    that is, a beginning, a two syllable space, and a rhyming end."
    ex : eye in the sky / drunk as a skunk / fun in the sun / stone to the bone...
  • Idiom Site - origines et explications (


  • "Every month the Comenius Group provides a new idiom to assist students of English.
    They provide a definition as well as audio files of the idiom itself and the idiom used in context."



INTERACTIVE exercises :


  • Chinese Zodiac Zone - Learn English idioms.
    "- Find out which animal year you were born in and which famous people share the same Chinese Zodiac sign. 
    - Let Magic Monkey read your mind and guess your Chinese Zodiac sign.
    - Test your knowledge of English Idioms that use the animals of the Chinese Zodiac.
    - Download and print your own fun Chinese New Year Posters." 




  • Essential Idioms - interactive exercises and worksheets (
    Advice / Business / Decisions / Emotions / Exclamations / Most Common Idioms Exercise / People /
    Predictions / Remarks
  • English Expressions
    "To be dog tired" means to be very tired, just like this dog.
    Click on the link to read the little book and learn new expressions
    then try to remember them and do the activity."

    Activity created by: Renée Maufroid


  • More idioms
    "Learn more idioms, look at the slideshow several times and then do the activity."
    Activity created by: Renée Maufroid


  • Eye on Idioms (
    "After viewing the literal representation of each idiom, students are asked to complete the sentence
    by selecting the correct idiom from the list. Using context clues from the sentence, students can then determine
    the metaphorical meaning of the idiom. As a final step, students are asked to use the idiom in a sentence
    to show their understanding of its meaning."


  • Oh No! Not More Cliches - 10 questions (
    "Back with some more clichés - So put "your nose to the grindstone", "your shoulder to the wheel" and "your best foot forward", and see if you can complete this quiz in that strange position. Have fun! Contains some US, and some British usage."
  • Choose the correct meaning for certain idioms (3 suggestions à chaque fois) - (
  • Idiomes par thème + exercices interactifs (
  • Idioms : interactive exercises (a4esl)
  • Incredible Idioms - "Match the idiom on the left with its correct meaning on the right."
    Le site n'existe plus. Pour imprimer le document avec une taille normale, enregistrez-le d'abord.

  • Strange Expressions (idioms) - interactive (a4esl)
    ex :
    "What does the expression "out to lunch" mean when the person described is not literally having lunch?
    a. The person is eating.
    b. The person likes lunch and eats all day long.
    c. The person is uneducated.
    d. The person is not concentrating or focusing and seems weird.
    e. The person has a great sense of humor."
  • Alien Strip - Trouvez la fin des idiomes. (


Exercises TO PRINT :
  • Sayings - Rebus - Activities to print (

  • Essential Idioms - interactive exercises and worksheets (
    Advice / Business / Decisions / Emotions / Exclamations / Most Common Idioms Exercise / People /
    Predictions / Remarks

Lesson plans :

  • Shakespeare's idioms: Lesson 1
    "This lesson teaches idioms which were all used or invented by Shakespeare.
    It uses specially created illustrations to show the connection between the individual words (e.g. night + owl) and the idiom as a whole (e.g. night owl).
    The lesson will give students an opportunity to use the idioms through the creation of a short skit."


  • Wanderlust: Idioms - a lesson
    "This is a nice comedy with several really funny scenes. I used it to introduce and have students practice idioms and idiomatic expressions."



  • Death Becomes Her: Idioms - a lesson
    "This is a classic movie that makes people reflect upon important life dilemmas, such as aging, plastic surgeries, living forever, among others."




  • Colorful language
    "Watch the video and play the game."

    Activity created by: Renée Maufroid


  • Let me know
    "Watch the animation , then play the game and find the missing word in each sentence."

    Activity created by: Renée Maufroid