How to use advertisements in the lesson

How to use advertisements in the lesson

Advertisements are perfect for creating a fun, engaging and collaborative lesson that your students will love. Here is a ready-made plan for the perfect advertising lesson.

I. Discussion

Start the lesson with a general discussion on advertising. Students can do this in pairs, groups, or even as a whole class.

Some key questions to discuss:
-- How do you feel about advertising?
-- Is there too much advertising?
-- What is your favourite advertisement?
For more questions on advertising check out these links: esldiscussions, iteslj, teflpedia.

If you want, you can turn the discussion into a full-fledged debate.
Ideas for debating topics:
-Good products don’t need advertising
-We should ban ads from the streets
-We should ban ads for children

II Case study

1) Evolution of advertising
Show students two commercials advertising the same product, for example laundry detergent. One commercial should be vintage, another -- very modern. Ask students what makes the two commercials different, then have them make list of all the ways advertising has evolved and discuss

Vintage video:

Modern video:

Watch this video on YouTube.

 2) What makes an advertisement work?
Ask students to  discuss in groups (humour,motivational,cameo by famous people).

3) Watch and learn
Show your student a selection of commercials. Make sure to include
-- a funny ad
-- a Superbowl ad
-- a famous ad
-- a controversial ad
-- an ad with a celebrity

Have your students fill in a chart

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4) Ad comparisons
Show students differents commercials for the same product for example two different commercials for chocolate. Ask them to discuss which commercial works best and why?
Ad 1:

Watch this video on YouTube.

Ad 2:

Watch this video on YouTube.

III Design your own commercial

It’s time for students to try their hand at advertising and nothing will get them to be enthusiastic and produce their best work like a bit of competition which when you come it is what advertising is all about.
Students work in different groups but they all have to come up with an advertisement campaign for the same product.
Rather than giving them the usual washing powder or crisps to advertise, have them create an advertisement campaign for one of these unusual inventions.

The procedure:
1. Each group makes a list of ten adjectives that describe the product. They discuss how they can convince consumers of these characteristics.
2. Students practice designing different types of ads. Have them create one, several or all of the following:
-- Slogan
-- Billboard ad (on an A2 sheet of paper)
-- Radio ad (record on a dictaphone)
-- TV ad (film a video on the phone)
-- Superbowl ad (design the concept).

Explain to students that Superbowl ads are usually spectacular commercials with millions allocated to budget and often involve Hollywood stars advertising the product.

-Product placement.

Explain to students the concept of product placement (companies paying to have their products featured in films and TV shows). Have students pick a scene from their favourite movie and try to place the product in it. To make this really funny, you can have them do this with a  fantasy or historical movie.
3. Groups take turns to present their work. Then ask students to vote for the best commercials. They are not allowed to vote for themselves and must vote for one of the other groups. Make sure to have a prize for the winners!

Good luck with your lesson and may the best advertisement win!


Кристина Шабо

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