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Giving Directions: A Collection of Resources for Teaching How to Ask and Give Directions for ESL Students by Chris Gunn




This is not so much a lesson plan but is instead a collection of resources that can be used to teach how to give and ask for directions. In this section I've identified three common ways to give directions based on different situations. When I have some time, I'll add a fourth.


Part I: Street Name and Nearby Landmark


Perhaps, the easiest way to give directions is just to say what street it is on. Granted, it's not so easy in countries like Korea where there are no street names, but even there it can be modified to fit. For countries that don't use street names you can give an area and a landmark.




Language Points


It's on Pine Street.

It's on 4th Avenue.

It's on the corner of Fourth and Pine.

It's next to the bank.

It's across from the school.

It's opposite the bookstore.

(It's in Yeonsu Dong

across from the CGV theater.)



Information Gap A Sheet

Information Gap B Sheet







Part II: Subway or Bus Directions


Another common way to give directions is to tell somebody what bus or subway to take, where to transfer, and where to get off.



 Language Points


Take the Green Line to Central Station.

Transfer to the Main Line.

Get off at Market Station.

Go out exit number 4.



Information Gap A

Information Gap B




Part III: Directions by Foot or Car


A third common way to give directions is to tell somebody which streets to go down and where to turn.


Language Points


Go down Main Street to Broadway.

Turn left on Broadway.

It's on your right.



Information Gap A

Information Gap B




Part IV: Directions by Car Route


Another way commonly used to give directions when driving is to state the route including highways, bridges, tunnels, and turn offs.


Language Points


Take coastal highway.

Take the Westminister turn off.

Go over (Take) the Alex Fraser Bridge.

Go through (Take) the Massey Tunnel.

No Resources Available


Other Language Points:


Lessons on directions are also a good time to introduce embedded question (noun clauses) such as:


Can you tell me where the library is?

I don't know where the theater is.

Can you tell me how to get to the airport?


Some other important expressions include:

You can't miss it.

I'm lost.

Which way is the hotel?

Right in front of you.

It's on the second floor.



Other Resources:

Directions Cloze Activity

Another Directions Activity Sheet (Part I)

Relative Clauses and Places



All materials  (c) 2007 Lanternfish