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Finding a Perfect Roommate/Flatmate AN ESL Role-play

by Filippa Araki





Ranking Roommates:

Vocabulary Warm-up


Room Ads: Listening Reading

Comprehension Warm-up


Rooms for Rent Role Cards


Friends Looking for Rooms Role Cards


Students with Rooms for Rent

Activity Sheet


Students with Friends Needing Rooms

Activity Sheet



Finding an Apartment Role-play



Purpose and Audience:

The purpose of these materials is to get the students to practice talking about the qualities of good and bad roommates.


Target Language:

           Describing people and their habits.

           Talking about distances: It' takes about 10 minutes by bus.


Warm up:

Group Discussion

Where do you live?

Do you live in a homestay or in shared accommodation?

Who do you live with?

Are you happy where you live? Why or why not?

Who did you live with in your country?


Pros and Cons Brainstorm

What do you think about shared accommodation?

What are the pros and cons of shared accommodation?


?nbsp;      2 groups divided into Pros and Cons

?nbsp;      then pair up Pro and Con to discuss


Which would you choose?

In groups of 3, put Shared Accommodation Ads in pile face down

Students turn 1 up  and explain to the group.



This accommodation is in (area).

It?? a (flat/house/townhouse)

There are (number) people living there.

It costs $____ a week.

(other information)


Would you like to live there? Why or why not? ?Discuss

After going through all six ads, choose the best one for you and explain why.


The Perfect Flatmate

What kind of person is good to live with? Why?


Ranking Exercise:

In groups, students circle the ideal qualities of roommates using the Ranking Exercise Vocabulary Sheet and then rank them in order of importance.




The class is divided into two groups:


Group 1: These students have a room for rent at their house because a roommate has just moved out. They will need a Room for Rent Role Card and a Room for Rent Activity Sheet.


Group 2: These students have a friend who is looking for a place to live. They will need a Friends Looking for a Place to Live Role Card and a Students with Friends Needing a Room Activity Sheet.


The students should be given some time to read their role cards, ask questions about vocabulary and then write down the concerns (from the role cards) into the table headings (on the activity sheets).


Divide the class chairs into two lines facing each other (or if you like, have an inner circle and outer circle). One line is for students with rooms to rent (Group 1)and the other line is for students who have friends who need a place to live (Group 2).


Group 1 students approach group 2 students and ask them if the group 2 students know anybody who needs a place to live. Group 2 students tell them they have a friend who is looking for a place. Group 2 will then ask questions to make sure that their friend will be happy in the shared accommodation. Group 1 students then ask questions about the friend to make sure that the friend is compatible.


Wrap up

Students discuss which friends were compatible with which houses.



There is also another role-play, Finding an Apartment, that focuses more on the qualities of a good apartment than on the qualities of good roommates.




All materials  (c) 2007 Lanternfish ESL