I am not quite sure how I stumbled upon this site but it was a pleasant encounter. The site also provides many ideas to use the content in creative out of the box ways based on Edward de Bono’s book How to Have Creative Ideas. Even though it isn’t an ESL site as such, we can of course use it to our teaching advantage. Click on a number from 1 to eight and Random word generator will generate a list of random words.
Here are some suggested ideas that I liked from the site that can be used as interesting prompts for writing exercises in the English classroom:
- Short story. Grab four random words. The first word has to be in the title. The second one will define the plot. The third one is something about the main character. The fourth one is something to do with a twist in the plot. So I clicked on number four and these are the four words I was presented with.
The title of my story would be “Feast on the Rooftop”, which will be a romance encounter on the rooftop of a skyscraper between a sailor and a mermaid. Unfortunately the sailor snores like a freight train at night, which really puts the mermaid off and she ends up dumping him.
- Confucius says. Grab three random words and use at least one of them to create a wise Confucian saying. When prompted with “family”, “tent” and “antique”, these are some of the comments that people wrote: “A tent made of paper is as good as no tent a all.” “A family in use of an antique tent is a family in want of adventure.” “A new antique is really not an antique at all.” “The foolish man is content to sleep in a tent; the wise man builds himself a strong house.” “The wise don’t keep their antique loving family in an old tent, they build them a kingdom for they are the greatest treasure anyone can have.”
- Hemingway 6 Word Story. Ernest Hemingway was once challenged to write a story in under 10 words and he actually got the job done with this gripping 6 word account: “For sale; baby shoes, never worn”. Grab two random words and use them to write a 6 word story. These are some of the interesting 6 word stories written with “wind” and “ant”: “For ant, light wind was hurricane.” “The Wind Blew The Ant Away.” “Powerful as wind, vulnerable as ants.” “Ant learns to fly in wind.” Wind attacked Ant, it survived successfully.”