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Head Over Heels

Posted on February 19, 2013 by kierandonaghy


This EFL lesson is designed around Head Over Heels an Oscar-nominated puppet animation directed by Timothy Reckart. Students practise using idiomatic expressions, watch a short film and talk about love and relationships.



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Language level: Intermediate (B1) – Advanced (C1)

Learner type: Teens and adults

Time: 90 minutes

Activity: Exercise on body idioms, watching a short film and speaking

Topic: Love and relationships

Language: Idiomatic expressions related to parts of the body and relationships.

Materials: Short film, body idioms worksheet and relationship questions

Downloadable materials: head over heels lesson instructions     body idioms worksheet     relationship questions


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Step 1

Write the following sentence on the board:

“I always get butterflies in my stomach when I have to speak in public.”

Ask your students if they can understand the idiomatic expression “to have butterflies in one’s stomach.” If they can’t tell them it means to be very nervous. Ask them if they know any other idiomatic expressions which use parts of the body.


Step 2

Give students the body idioms worksheet and ask them to complete the 5 sentences with a part of the body. Get them to compare their answers with a partner and then get feedback from the whole class.


Step 3

Put your students into pairs and ask them to discuss the 5 questions using the body idioms in the second part of the worksheet.


 Step 4

Write “head over heels” on the board and ask students what they think the idiomatic expression means. If they don’t know write up a sentence such as:


“John’s madly in love with his new girlfriend; he’s head over heels”


Step 5

Tell your students they are going to watch a short film called Head Over Heels. Ask them what type of film it is going to be and what things they think they are going to see in the film.


Step 6

Show your students the film and pause at 01.57. Ask them the following questions:

Were your predictions correct?

What problems do the couple have?

What do you think is going to happen in the rest of the film?

Are they going to be able to sort out their problems? How?


HEAD OVER HEELS from Timothy Reckart on Vimeo.

Step 7

Show the rest of the film. Ask students the following questions:

How did the film make you feel?

What adjectives would you use to describe the film?

How did the couple overcome their problems?

What’s the message of the film?


Step 8

Give student the discussion questions about relationship and go through all the idiomatic expressions related to love and relationship. Put students into small groups and ask them to discuss the questions.


I hope you enjoy this English language lesson.

Support Film English

Film English remains ad-free and takes many hours a month to research and write, and hundreds of dollars to sustain. If you find any joy or value in it, please consider supporting Film English with a monthly subscription, or by contributing a one-off payment.

Monthly subscription

One-off payment

37 thoughts on “Head Over Heels

  1. Think it’s great! love it !I will probably use it
    on Friday’s lessons for sure. Thanks a bunch mate!:))))

  2. Hi! I really like this video, it’s the kind of think I love to watch so I’ll be happy to shere it in my class and I’m sure they going to like it too… I think this film brings the students the opportunity to express several kind of ideas and feelings! Thanks to shere it with us!

    • Hi Veronika,
      Thanks a lot for taking the time to comment; I’m really happy that you and your students enjoy the lessons so much.
      All the best,

  3. Wow, I’m here for the first time and I’ve already fallen in love with this website. Thank you so much :*

  4. Hello Kieran
    This is a great way to learn and teach. Thanks for sharing real good stuff.

  5. hi!
    this is my first day on this site, I really thank full to bristish council learn English site who gave me like of this site. It is really good site and it is awesome. Every one can learn English in very attractive way. These idiomatic expressions are really use in daily life. I must say this site is a voice of mute community, here mute community mean who doesn’t know how to speak English. Thanks for this amazing lesson and idioms.
    thanks a lot

  6. awesome! what an excellent teaching site!
    very very useful, informative and instructive. completely planned & matured. I’m really surprised seeing such a perfect explanations & exampling as I was scrolling the page down and I expected: “wouldn’t have more”! but it had more!
    here I really learned something today.thanks a lot for providing this…
    God bless U!
    (sorry for failing of my weak English)!

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  8. What a find! I’m definitely going to take this lessons to my students next Friday… Thank you soo much, your work is great.

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  10. Hi Kieran, used this lesson in an upper intermediate speaking class last week – they loved it! They found it humourous and thought-provoking and also loved the different idioms they learnt.

    Thank you so much! Keep up the good work 🙂

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  12. Great, as usual! I am actally head over hills with this post, thanks ever so much, I’ll use it in class on Monday and let you know how it goes.
    All the best

  13. Hey there!

    I love this, going to use it in my next lesson for sure (already got the worksheets printed out and the video on my usb–can’t wait to try it out:))

    Mad props otherwise too, it’s a brilliant & really useful site, so much fun to look through all these while planning and even more so to use them in class.

    Thanks for all and keep up the good work 🙂

    Eva from Hungary x

      • Hello
        Many thanks for sharing this wonderful lesson. I was wondering if I could download the video. I guess the link does not work any more.
        Many thanks

        • Hi Louay,
          Thanks a lot for commenting. I’m glad you like the lesson. Unfortunately, the filmmakers have taken down the film, but they may upload it again in the future.
          All the best,

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