Wacky Products
esl-expertz-ostrich-pillow
Written by Ian Kime
There are some products online that are just too weird to believe, and others that are so weird they must be true! This B1-B2 level discussion course has everything you need for a 60-90 minute discussion about wonderful and weird products found online.
Wacky Products

What is going on in this picture? Well, that’s the famous Power Nap Ostrich Pillow!

Don’t worry, we aren’t affiliated 😉 You can find all sorts of wacky products on the internet. Some wackier than others… This lesson plan plays on this idea of wack internet products. There is a downloadable PDF at the bottom of the page with instructions and materials for a 60-90 minute discussion course for your B1+-B2 students.
This lesson focuses on reading, vocabulary, writing, and group-work. Students will read product descriptions and answer questions. The lesson ends with a task-based activity where students will create their own wacky products and present them to the class.
Warm-up

There are 3 different ways you can get this lesson started

  • Use Realia,
  • Use the product video for the Ostrich Pillow,
  • Use pages 3-6 of the PDF.
However you start, give every student a sheet found on page 2 which contains questions to guide the students through the activities.
Realia
Bring a product or 2 from home, wacky or not (preferably a bit strange), and use the questions from page 2 to talk about it. This conversation can last anywhere from 2-5 minutes depending on how interesting your product is!

Ostrich Pillow video
Show the picture on page 1 to your class. Before telling them what it’s called, ask them what they would name this product. Then, watch the video and answer the questions from page 2 with your class.

Pages 3-6
Choose 1 or more products from pages 3-6 and give a copy to each of your students. Let them read the product description and then use the questions on page 2 to discuss the product(s) in question.
Vocabulary activtiy
Put your students into pairs or small groups. They will stay in these pairs or small groups for the rest of the lesson. Print enough copies of page 7 for each group. Start with the expressions. Cut out the cards and give a set to each group. They must now sort them into two columns: “probable” and “improbable.” Once they are done, groups can check their answers together. You could stop there or…
You could continue with the vocabulary words. If you decide to use this portion of the activity, students must sort them into “real” and “fake.” They are pretty advanced words, so maybe you won’t want to do them with your B1’s, but my B2 students enjoy the challenge. Again, once all the groups have finished, they can check amongst themselves. Then, give the answers to your students. The answer sheet is found on page 12. You can print out a copy for each student, if you’d like.
Reading
With your groups still formed, Explain to them that they will be reading product reviews from the internet. Print a copy of pages 8 and 9 for each group. Cut out the products. Do not tell them which are real and which are fake! Give your students 10-15 minutes to read and discuss these products by answering the questions on page 2. Their goal is to create a wish list containing their 3 must-have products (it doesn’t matter if they are real or fake!). Encourage your students to use all of the expressions from the vocabulary activity!
At the end of each product description is the beginning of a phrase for them to place one of the new vocabulary words.
Once everyone has finished or time is up, have each group present their wish-list to the class. Then, check to see which group was right about which products in terms of fake or real.
Make your own wacky product
Now it’s your students’ turn to make their own wacky internet product! Cut out the cards on page 10 and shuffle them into a pile on the table. Each group will draw one of these “problems to be solved” at random. If you would like, you can let the groups trade amongst themselves.
Next, pass out a copy of the sheet found on page 11 to each group. Students will use this sheet to create their product based on the “problem to be solved” card they received.
Finally, have the groups present their products to the class. You can have a vote on which product is the most practical, the most unrealistic, the best, etc.

What's your wacky product?

Use this lesson plan for free in your own classroom and share your students’ ideas for wacky products here on our blog!
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