Lesson Ideas: Mad Men
“Mad Men –a Creative Thinking Exercise”

For want of anything more interesting to waffle about, I thought I might write up, every now and then, some of the lesson ideas which come to me under the influence of opium pipes and pints of industrial drain cleaner –and which I then inflict upon my long-suffering students.

Today, I present Mad Men.

Named after the US series which my missus watches and which, from what I can see through an occasional glance over her shoulder, seems to be a show about chain smoking –the Mad Men lesson is an exercise in Creative Thinking under pressure.

It’s a good, fun way to get the class thinking creatively and, since 99% of the generated product names are completely nonsensical, impractical, or downright dangerous, it’s also a good exercise in getting the students to think outside of the proverbial box and let their imaginations really run wild.

As a starting point, for anyone wanting to try this themselves, here is the list of words I used to get the ball rolling. As I said before, you need to design your list so that any word from column A can be paired with any word from column B and still make some kind of [albeit vague] sense. [Apologies for the screengrab but Tumblr doesn’t support proper table layout]:

When, as I like to on occasion,  I played along too, I drew out the words “FISH” and  ”HOLIDAYS”. Here is the poster I came up with:

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