Thursday, July 17, 2014

Word Crimes, Grammar & Parody

Weird Al is back, if you haven't noticed already from your social media feed. He's pulling a Beyonce and releasing a video every day this week to celebrate the release of his final studio album, which makes me wonder - who buys Weird Al albums? But anyhow!

One of the videos is called Word Crimes, and it's a pretty delightful spoof of Robin Thicke's Blurred Lines, especially for us word nerds. I made a lesson to go with it, and I think it would be useful for advanced writing or grammar classes. I've made a slideshow for the teacher to present, and a worksheet for students. Click through for more!

The slideshow begins with an image of Weird Al along with a definition, and you can use this slide to work through the first section on the worksheet. This section activates prior knowledge for students and gets the concept of parody out and on the board. The second slide contains the link to the video for Word Crimes, and the corresponding part of the worksheet asks students to analyze grammar content in the song and identify humorous parts. I've also included options for expansion activities appropriate for work in a computer lab or at home; students can write or prepare presentations on the elements of parody in an Onion article or another Weird Al video.

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