EMF5 Day 2 | Anastasia Fetisova: “Use Memes”, They Said. “It’ll Be Fun”, They Said | Talk summary

Posted: March 13, 2015 in Conferences
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Memes – by analogy with genes – transmit information, carry cultural ideas, symbols or practices. They self-replicate, mutate and respond to selective pressures. In her highly dynamic session, Anastasia Fetisova made a very strong case that memes can be a highly motivating teaching tool.

Possible uses of memes:

  • Introduce vocabulary / slang through memes. Students will be motivated to ‘crack’ the meme in order to get the pun!
  • Introduce grammar
  • Explore cultural norms – e.g. the fact that they didn’t understand this picture, set Anastasia’s students on a webquest
  • To spark discussion – e.g. on internet addition
  • Get the students to create their own memes – to try out language (they’ll do lots of editing) or to give you feedback in a fun way

Sources: knowyourmeme.com and memebase.com are teacher and student friendly

You can also create them using online meme makers, e.g. using keepcalm-o-matic (also teacher-friendly).

 Hit meme types

  • One doesn’t simply – e.g. to introduce class rules.
  • What I really do  is a great springboard for discussing pros and cons of different careers.
  • Chemistry cat – could great for ESP
  • Terrible teacher – to look at ourselves from a different perspective. =)

A very inspiring session!

  1. Adi Rajan says:

    Where did this talk take place, Olya?

  2. In today’s one-to-one class I needed to introduce a vocab item and remembering this post I quickly googled a meme based on it and showed it to the student. It was fun and I think more effective than just saying/writing the word. Thank you for sharing the idea!

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