English with celebrities

English with celebrities

People are interested in celebrities and want to know more about their favourite actors and singers. Most of us follow famous people on social networks, watch some youtube videos about them, read magazines and online articles. The interesting context for routine tasks can increase learners’ motivation and make students more involved.

What types of tasks with celebrities can be used in English lessons? Here are some examples to inspire you.


level- pre-intermediate +

suitable for group and one-on-one lessons

Using biographies is a good way to practice past tenses: Past Simple, Past Simple vs Present Perfect, Past Simple vs Past Perfect.

To make the task look less like a gap-filling exercise, make the prompts using the main events in a celebrity’s life or career. For example,

  • be born in Manhattan, New York City.
  • always like singing.
  • start performing at the age of 14.
  • later become a songwriter and write songs for Britney Spears, Fergie and Pussycat dolls.
  • in 2008 release the first album.
  • appear in several movies.
  • get numerous awards. 
  • sell 27 million albums.

Students make the sentences using the prompts:

Example: Lady Gaga was born in Manhattan. She has always liked singing etc.

Personal questions

level- elementary +

suitable for group and one-on-one lessons

To practice question formation in the context of personal information, make a speaking gap-filling activity using two actors or singers.

Go to a website where you can compare any celebrities you like. Cover some facts and cut the worksheet into two halves for student A and student B.

For example,

Student A: How old is Emilia Clarke?

Student B: She’s 32. When was Reese Witherspoon born?

Student A: She was born on March, 22, 1976. How tall is Emilia Clarke? 

Variation: compare personal profiles of two or more celebrities using comparatives and superlatives: Reese Witherspoon is older than Emilia Clarke but Salma Hayek is the oldest.

Celebrity interviews (adapted from’ Language activities for Teenagers’ by Seth Lindstromberg)

level- pre-intermediate +

suitable for group lessons

kid holding heart icon on a paper

Print out a portrait of any celebrity that you think might be interesting for your group. Attach the portrait to the flap of paper. Say that this famous person is going to be your guest and will answer all the questions. Ask a strong learner to act as a famous person. While students are preparing their questions using different grammar structures, you can give a text to ‘celebrity’ containing some basic facts about him/her. A teacher can also play the role of the invited guest.

 The star is holding a portrait in front of themselves and answer the questions. A group can vote which question was the most original/interesting/the funniest.

 A group can write a report on what the celebrity has told them. 

Recap on what they say

level- intermediate +

suitable for group and one-on-one lessons

In this activity, students need to write a report like in the previous task. But this task is suitable for individual lessons. Play the interview with a star and ask your learner to recap the main points made by the speaker.

For example,

The report can be written in Present or Past Simple: Beyonce loves her job and she doesn’t like relaxing. Or using Indirect speech: Beyonce told us that her mother always knew what the singer had been wearing the day before. She admitted…

How do I look?

level- elementary +

suitable for group and one-on-one lessons


Instead of describing the appearance and clothes of random people in student’s books or on the Internet, find some pictures of stars to describe.

Choose 6-9 photos of famous singers/actors. To make it a game, a learner can describe a famous person and a partner/a teacher can guess who is being described.

 It perfectly fits into the topic ‘Degrees of comparison’. Find two pictures of famous actresses and ask student(s) to compare the way they look using the words: long/ tall/ short/ thin/slim/big/   pretty/ beautiful/ expensive/ cheap/stylish/ trendy.

For example

I think Sarah Jessica Parker is more stylish than Angelina Jolie. But Angelina has more beautiful dress.

Have the most interesting and productive lessons with celebrities!

Юлия Белоног

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