1. Have you ever described something to someone on the phone and realized you were using gestures, even though the person could not see you?
  2. Can you say anything in sign language?
  3. Can you think of some gestures that have different meanings in different countries?
  4. Do gestures help you to understand others and express yourself, or are they sometimes confusing and distracting?
  5. Do you “talk” with your hands? Do you know anyone who does?
  6. Do you know any gestures you can make with your feet? What do they mean?
  7. Do you think some gestures are universal?
  8. Has your teacher ever used a gesture that you are not sure you understood? If so, please try to imitate the gesture and say what you think it means.
  9. Has your teacher ever used a hand and/or facial gesture that was o.k. in the teacher’s country but an insult in your country? If so, did you tell the teacher so it would not happen again?
  10. Have you ever made a social mistake using wrong gestures in foreign countries?
  11. Have you or anybody like your friends or family ever made their own gesture that never excited before
  12. How do you beckon someone to come to you in your country?
  13. How do you count on your fingers in your country?
  14. How do you gesture “Go away!”?
  15. How do you signal a waiter in your country?
  16. How do you signal that someone has a phone call?
  17. How do you signal that someone is crazy?
  18. How do you signal that you’re bored? tired? angry?
  19. How much do people in your country move their hands when they talk?
  20. What are some “bad” gestures that you have seen in Western films but you don’t know the meaning of? (You need to be careful here not to offend anybody but if your teacher doesn’t tell you, then who can you ask??)
  21. What are some bad gestures that you have seen in Western films but you don’t know the meaning of?
  22. What are some gestures that you didn’t learn until you were a teenager or a young adult?
  23. What are some gestures that you used when you were a child that you don’t use anymore?
  24. What are some gestures you know that relate to the sporting world?
  25. What are some gestures you know?
  26. What are some good gestures in your country?
  27. What are some insulting gestures in your country?
  28. What are some universal gestures for help? choking?
  29. What are the gestures for “I don’t know”, “You are crazy”, “money” and “come here” in your country?
  30. What is your friend’s favorite gesture?
  31. What gesture in your culture do you think is unique from other cultures?
  32. What gestures do you have when drinking alcohol?
  33. What gestures, in your opinion, are understood by people anywhere in the world?
  34. What’s your country’s gesture for peace? What if you show it backward? (I.e. In Hong Kong, if the back of the hand faces the audience when you’re using a “V” peace sign, that means “F*** You!”)
  35. When is it appropriate to point?
  36. Why do you think people express with gestures?

Couldn’t find the type of question you’re looking for? Check out our complete list of ESL Conversation Questions. You can also look through our other resources or opportunities to teach abroad with ESL Workshop.

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