These Activities are Absurd!

More like these activities are all about absurdities, and they are intended to help your students grasp this critical thinking skill. 

The funny thing about absurdities is that they entertain and build thinking skills. Absurdities are a key component of humor. Because they are fun, absurd activities can turn a reluctant learner into an eager student.  And we all need a little more humor in our lives!

But absurdities have a serious side too! They are an effective teaching tool for problem solving and decision making.  Students become more aware of the need to analyze the logic in something and apply common sense reasoning to communication. As students do this, their skills in making judgments and finding solutions increases.

These fun, clever, and absurd activities will improve students’ critical thinking skills!

Absurd Definition
Get students started by first helping them grasp the meaning of the word absurd by having them look it up in the dictionary. They’ll find that the word means something ridiculous, not possible, or just plain nonsense. That’s why absurdities are fun. They are nonsense!

Absurd Compounds
Offer students the below common compound words. Ask students to choose a few and mix them up. 

Students can either put the first part of one word with the last part of another word together, which will have students making words like treefish and cowbug

Or students can flip the compounds, which will have students making words like flybutter and cakepan.  What on earth might these absurd compounds look like? Ask students to draw their absurd compounds.

• cowboy    • butterfly    football       airplane
• pancake   • ladybug     • lampshade   • hummingbird
• starfish     • doorbell    • skateboard   • crosswalk

Absurd Advertising
Someone is always trying to sell something. Some of the the ads out there are really absurd! They claim that that their product does some of the most amazing things. Give students a chance to write and design their own ads with absurd claims. If it helps, suggest these made-up products to get their creative juices flowing: Kazoom Plant Food, Volt-O Vitamins, or Flamin’ Hot Sauce.
(This is a great first step into introducing and reinforcing fact and opinion.)

Improve Ss’ thinking skills with these fun, clever, & absurd activities via @remediapub #edchat #thinkingskills
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Absurd Picture
Show students the absurd illustration below. Tell them that the baseball players couldn’t find enough baseball equipment so they had to make do with what they could find. Ask students how many different kinds of sports equipment they can find in the picture. Download <free download> the picture if you would like to hand it out to individual students.

Absurd Baseball Game Picture | Remedia Publications
Click here to enlarge.

Absurd Mad Libs
Grab your favorite Mad Lib and complete the story as normal. Then have a student read the absurd story aloud. Giggles will ensue! Or assess whether students are grasping absurdity with this <free download> absurd Student Information form. Student will answer questions about themselves with absurd answers.

These absurd activities were adapted from our Critical Thinking Skills: Absurdities book, which guides students, step-by-step, through the thinking process as they practice analyzing logic and applying common sense.

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