Tag Archives: stereotypes

Get Students Out of their Seats with a Lesson on Gender Stereotypes

My beloved father was a chauvinist doctor and my mother was an undercover feminist. I am sure you’ve heard the saying “opposites attract”and that appeared to be the case with my parents. It was not an easy combination to live with. My father was the main breadwinner and my mother was the housewife. These were their roles in the house and to be honest, I don’t think my mother had an issue with that arrangement. The problem was he expected us (three sisters) to fully cooperate doing housework while my only brother did nothing but smile when we complained it was unfair. My father, on the other hand, and contradictorily, ¬†expected us to get the best marks at school ’cause we were expected to go to university and get a degree so as not be the housewife my mother was. Who understands men? ūüėČ

Today I want to share with you a lesson I did with my Intermediate students about Gender Stereotypes. This is a lesson where common general stereotypes about men and women are challenged.

Level: B1/B2

Aim: Get students to discuss general stereotypes about men and women using different expressions to give opinion.


1. Give handouts containing expressions used to give opinion. Here. Encourage students to use a variety of expressions when they give opinion.

2. Ask   Do you know any stereotypes about men and women? Instruct students to talk for about five minutes and then ask them to give feedback.

3. Play the video ¬†Differences between Men and Women¬†to get students into the mood. It’s a funny little video. I hope nobody takes offence.

4.Using Blue-tack, stick the posters containing the statements they need to discuss on the walls of the classroom. Posters here

5. Ask students to, working in twos or threes, wander around the classroom and randomly choose the posters they want to discuss.

Sticking posters on the walls of the classroom enables students to get out of their seats and talk to different people. As always it is important to make sure they understand the importance of using English and only English.

Learn English and have fun!

Lesson Plan: Stereotypes

This is a lesson for intermediate students, which I thought would be interesting to share, mainly because of the video support, which I selected only after some wasted time listening to some very poor quality videos or  perhaps  good quality videos but which, unfortunately, were not appropriate for this level.

Step 1. What is a stereotype?

A stereotype is a widely held but fixed and oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person related to their race, nationality and sexual orientation…etc

Step 2. Brainstorming Ideas.

Ask the class. What do you think of when you hear the word British? Give them one or two minutes to write down their answers, and then call on a few students to give you their answers. Play the video National Stereotypes, but¬†don’t show the images, just the audio. How many have they guessed?

Step 3. Brainstorming
In pairs, students try to answer the same question but, this time, about Spain and the Spaniards. Embedded below are some of my students’ answers. Do you agree?

Mapa Mental creado con ExamTime por cristina.cabal

Step 4. Speaking: National Stereotypes
Ask students whether they agree or disagree with the following National Stereotypes
1. The British are violent mad football freaks
2. The Italians are good lovers but bad workers
3. The Chinese eat everything that moves
4. The Germans are very punctual
5. The Swiss love clocks

Have you ever wondered how we sound to speakers of other languages when we speak our native language? Some languages are easy to imitate, as for example the Italian language or the German one but I would never have guessed how a Spanish speaking native sounds to the rest of the world.
In this video the British Sketch comedian, Katherine Tate, volunteers to translate into seven different languages. Hilarious! And I hope nobody takes offence!

Step 6.Speaking. Students in pairs answer the following questions about stereotypes

♥What do people think of when they think of Spain and the Spaniards? Do you think these stereotypes are true or false?

♥Do you know of any stereotypes about British people?
♥What are some stereotypes you know of about women?
♥What are some stereotypes about men?

♥ What stereotypes exist about people who are blonde?
♥Do you think some stereotypes are true?
♥What stereotypes exist about religion?