Collaborative idea generation for ELT

A long time ago (so long ago he’s almost certainly forgotten about it) Ken Wilson shared a link to a buzzfeed article called ‘36 things you obviously need in your new home‘.

This is my favourite:

A library staircase

A library staircase

What would you do with these pictures in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the context they are used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All ideas are welcome (there are no wrong answers!)

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.

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(Almost) Infinite ELT Ideas has been on a long break, but now it’s back, hopefully for a while!

Forum – a World of Ideas‘, from the BBC World Service, is one of my favourite podcasts because it examines lots of ideas in depth and always makes me think.

Every episode they include a ‘Sixty Second Idea to Improve the World‘, which is available as a separate podcast. In it, one of their three experts has sixty seconds to propose an idea which they think would make the world a better place. The presenter and other two experts then discuss how it would work and whether they agree that it’s a good idea. Each episode is available for 30 days after it’s been broadcast, but you can download them and keep them forever.

60 Second Idea to Improve the World

 

One which I particularly liked was broadcast on May 24th 2014, and was the reason I resurrected the blog!

A memorable introduction

The Nigerian born novelist Okey Ndibe suggests we find a new way of introducing ourselves to others through our favourite artworks or objects. So rather than just telling someone your name, adopt a piece of art or even just a tree or a flower, and explain what it reveals about you.

What would you do with this podcast in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the context it is used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All ideas are welcome (there are no wrong answers!)

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.

Cow Clicker

Cow clicker

Cow Clicker was developed by Ian Bogost as a satire on social network games like Farmville. It ended on September 7, 2011 with the Cowpocalypse. There is now a variation on it called an interactive clicktion.

Ela Wassell told me about the phenomenon of Cow Clicker, and sent me an article detailing its development.

What would you do with this idea in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the context it is used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All ideas are welcome (there are no wrong answers!)

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.

Scale of the Universe

The Scale of the Universe

Chris Wilson recommended an amazing tool called ‘The Scale of the Universe’. It starts off at human scale, and you can zoom in and zoom out to the extremes of the scale of the universe.

What would you do with this tool in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the context it is used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All ideas are welcome (there are no wrong answers!)

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.

Mother, daughter and doll by Boushra Almutawakel

Mother, Daugh­ter and Doll is a series of 8 photos by Boushra Almutawakel. She is an Arab Muslim living in Yemen, who wears a hijab. The photos are a way of opening a discussion on the role of veiling. They were featured as the Guardian Pictures of the week a couple of weeks ago.

What would you do with these photos in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the context they are used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All ideas are welcome (there are no wrong answers!)

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.

I’m posting this on the day of the first ever Image Conference. Why not take a look at the site to find inspiration for your suggestions?

P.S. Thanks Sharon for pointing these photos out to me.

What Ali wore

Zoe Spawton has been taking photos of Ali since August 2012. He is a Turkish man with a keen sense of style who walks past the cafe where she works every day. She posts the photos on a blog. Here is one of her with Ali:

Ali and Zoe

 

I found out about them via the Guardian Pictures of the week.

What would you do with these photos in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the context they are used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All ideas are welcome (there are no wrong answers!)

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.

Marmite (on toast)

After a slumber of nearly a year, it’s time to rewaken (Almost) Infinite ELT Ideas. I’ve been doing my Delta, which you can read about on my other blog. Hope it was worth the wait! 🙂

Marmite is an important part of British culture, and has even led to the expression “It’s a Marmite thing“, meaning you either love it or hate it. In fact, after her death, Margaret Thatcher was described as a Marmite thing by one minister.

Marmite use this idea to good effect in their advertising campaigns. Here are a contrasting pair of TV adverts from 1997:

Jim Scrivener recently shared this very simple recipe for Marmite on toast from the BBC Good Food website. I highly recommend you read the comments.

What would you do with this video/recipe in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the context they are used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All ideas are welcome (there are no wrong answers!)

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.

Marmite

P.S. I am most definitely in the ‘hate’ camp. My aunt once asked me to make Marmite on toast for my cousin, but I failed since the smell on opening the jar was enough to make me leave the kitchen!

Wallace is a great inventor. Well, an inventor at least. As an extension to the highly successful Wallace and Gromit films and in collaboration with the Intellectual Property Office, the Cracking Ideas website is designed to inspire people to invent too. They have a set of activities for various age groups which I think would be good materials for the EFL classroom.

Wallace and Gromit

What would you do with these activities in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the context they are used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All ideas are welcome (there are no wrong answers!)

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.

One of my all-time favourite podcasts is Kermode and Mayo’s Film reviews from BBC Radio 5 live. It makes me laugh (sometimes enough to get weird looks from people on public transport or in the street!), and even if I don’t always agree with the reviews, they always make me think.

About a year ago listeners were asked to send in suggestions for acceptable cinema behaviour, and the whole thing was collated into this poster:

code_of_conduct

There is also an accompanying video, bringing the poster to life.

In 2014, BBC Learning English produced an episode of 6-minute English on cinema etiquette, based on a new story Simon Mayo recently told on the show about a breach of cinema etiquette, as well as some clips from the Code of Conduct. It would be good for lower levels or as an introduction to the text.

What would you do with the Code of Conduct in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the context it is used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All ideas are welcome (there are no wrong answers!)

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.

P.S. Hello to Jason Isaacs.

Here is an excerpt from a very funny cartoon from The Oatmeal, about the different methods a cat tries to get its owner’s attention. Click on the image below to see the whole cartoon.

Cat vs Internet - extract from The Oatmeal

What would you do with this cartoon in your classroom? You can make any assumptions you like about the wcontext it is used in. Post your ideas in the comments below. All ideas are welcome (there are no wrong answers!)

Click here to find out the idea behind this blog.