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Using Cartoon Captions in the ESL classroom

by Lynne Hand

Cartoon captions are a fun way to promote free writing.

Hand out a cartoon (use newspapers, magazines or the internet for sources) with the caption removed. Have the class discuss the scene portrayed. Then ask your students to think up a funny caption for the cartoon (they can work in groups, pairs or individually for this one). Once everyone is finished (allow about 3-5 minutes) collect all the captions and write them on the board - work as a class to correct any mistakes and discuss the choices. Then show the original caption.

Everyone can then vote on which captions are the funniest (prizes for the funniest caption make it more interesting).

You can create your own caption competition with ToonDoo.

Have a look at how a caption competition can be run on the web:-

The New Yorker

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