On this day in 1984, the “1984” commercial launched Apple’s Macintosh personal computer in the United States. The 45-second ad, which aired during a break in the third quarter of Super Bowl XVIII, was declared the best ad of the last 50 years in 1995. Directed by Alien and Blade Runner director Ridley Scott, the advertisement cost $1.6 million to produce and was aired only once. How can you use advertisements in the classroom?
Begin by checking out one of these lesson plans from ReadWriteThink.org:
- Decoding the Dystopian Characteristics of Macintosh’s “1984” Commercial
- Critical Media Literacy: Commercial Advertising
- Identifying and Understanding the Fallacies Used in Advertising
- Propaganda Techniques in Literature and Online Political Ads
- Persuasive Techniques in Advertising
After finishing one or more of the lessons on advertising above, have students create original advertisements. Begin by having students review the advertising techniques they’ve studied (propaganda, advertising fallacies). Next, have students identify a subject for their ad, such as a favorite television show, album, or product; an upcoming event; or a political figure. Then, ask small groups to create advertisements designed to persuade others to use a product, hold a viewpoint, or participate in an activity.
How else can you use advertisements in the classroom?