A cliché is a saying or expression that has been so overused that it has become boring and unoriginal. For example, “tip of the iceberg,” “have your cake and eat it too,” or “straw that broke the camel’s back.”
Alone, or with a partner or small group, set a timer for five minutes, and challenge yourself to come up with as many clichés as you possibly can.
Post them in the comments section, and then read a related Opinion piece to see how many of the ones you listed also appear on the author’s list.
Finally, challenge yourself: Take one cliché that you personally overuse, and come up with an original way to say the same thing.
Students 13 and older in the United States and Britain, and 16 and older elsewhere, are invited to comment. All comments are moderated by the Learning Network staff, but please keep in mind that once your comment is accepted, it will be made public and may appear in print.