Funny gadgets

Something I saw on one of my students’ blogs today: a picture (animation) of swimming fish that somehow drew my attention. Trying to figure out what it was, as it did not look like a simple picture, I discovered that when moving your mouse over the picture the fish would actually swim towards the mouse indicator (first you think you imagine it)! After playing with it for a while, I accidentally clicked the mouse and I saw a dot that the fish immediately reached out for and ate! So you could also feed the fish and it was not a simple picture at all! By hovering over the picture with my mouse some more I discovered the name of the gadget and quickly found Adam Bowman’s website where you can find more of these funny gadgets, which you can also embed on your own site. I would like to share this cute dog to play with you here, as it might be useful for a speaking or writing activity in which pupils learn to give instructions. Pupils should first figure out what they can make the dog do – fetching the ball is my favourite – and then explain to each other what it can do and how you can make it do these things. Have you tried making the dog roll yet? Keep your mouse clicked and make a circular movement to demonstrate how…

Another thing you could make the learners do is ask to design their own gadget. What would it be and what can it do? Have them look at some more examples of Bowman’s gadgets for inspiration, such as the fish, here.

Finally, using the editing function (edit settings), your learners can actually change many details of the gadget. For instance with the dog, you can change the leg length, quite funny! Feet, nose, tail tip, collar, all quite useful words for your learners when learning about animals, right?

(Somehow my embedded dog does not show here now – please go and check it here until I have sorted it out)

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