September seems to be a busy month, doesn’t it? A “back-to-school” feeling is in the air. And October has not even started yet! Here is a nice, lightweight and ready-to-go lesson you can use with your students. It requires no preparation and may be a really nice starting point to an interesting discussion about different nationalities and stereotypes.


Languages are the best reflection of the mentality of the people who speak them. English is no exception to this rule. There are quite a few phrases which may suggest that that English speakers are specialists in geography! 🙂  Check out the following:

When an English speaker does not understand a word he reads, he says “It is all Greek to me.”

When he accidentally swears, he may apologise by saying “Pardon my French.”

When he decides to leave without notice or permission, he takes a French leave.

When he does not want to pay the whole bill in the restaurant, he may suggest going Dutch.

When the information he gets is inaccurate or comes from gossip, he calls it Chinese whispers.

If he is not confident or brave, he needs Dutch courage.

If he does not want to rush things he says “Rome was not built in a day.

If he likes travelling, he knows that “All roads lead to Rome” and “When in Rome, do as the Romans do.”

I wonder what our Italian students think about the last three expressions! And what are the Italian equivalents of all of the above mentioned idioms? Why don’t you ask them straightaway?