Exercise to Wake Up the Brain Cells

Posted June 13, 2011 & filed under Lesson Plan, Notebook.

Dr. Seuss used to say, “I like nonsense.  It wakes up the brain cells.”  This summer I am challenging myself to make up more of my own “jabberwocky.”

I’m taking lessons in this from my own students.  Uninhibited writers are experts at experimenting, taking risks, and acting crazy.  My 2nd graders are willing to push the boundaries of sense, so I’m paying close attention to them.  I’ve noticed that the ones who are most reckless and free in their approach to writing are the ones who enjoy playing with language and ideas.

For those of us who need some help loosening up, here is a good exercise to wake up the brain cells.  It involves juxtaposing words in original ways.

Below is a group of words.  To play the game, take two to four words and create a phrase with them.   The goal is to come up with phrases that you would not normally think of (“blue city,” “ocean trophy,” etc.)!  Go crazy!