Retelling Very Funny Ads
I love using adverts in my teaching. If you ignore the fact that they’re trying to flog you something and focus on their narrative structure, they can provide you with an endless supply of mini-stories for “retelling” activities. The best ads are those with unexpected or amusing twists at the end. Here’s a beautifully simple example to get you in the mood.
Step One : Select your ads
Go to www.veryfunnyads.com and select about 8 adverts you think are suitable for retelling.
To save you a bit of time here are a few that have worked well for me:
- Drama Queen http://www.veryfunnyads.com/?oid=26931
- Bait http://www.veryfunnyads.com/?oid=24958
- Crying Baby http://www.veryfunnyads.com/?oid=24938
- Airport Holiday http://www.veryfunnyads.com/?oid=24951
- Lottery-winner in Church http://www.veryfunnyads.com/?oid=26809
- First Steps http://www.veryfunnyads.com/?oid=26003
- Snow http://www.veryfunnyads.com/?oid=24962
Step Two : The Retelling Activity
- Once in class, put your students in pairs (Student A | Student B).
- Ask Student B to cover their eyes or look out of the window while you show Student A the first advert.
- Ask Student B to explain to their partner what they think happens in the advert based on what they have heard (possible language focus: it sounded like … / it sounded as if ...)
- Now, get Student A to explain to B what actually happens. You might like to feed in some vocabulary before they do this.
- Show the advert again so that Student B can compare the images with their partner’s description.
- Go through the same procedure, with Student B doing the retelling.
Step Three : Conversation
Once your students have seen all the adverts, get them talking about advertising in a more general sense by going through the following questions in pairs or small groups (you may, of course, prefer to do this activity before Step Two)