Friday, June 8, 2012

Facebook Collaborative Efforts Strike Again with Fridges Around the World

Once again, the power of Facebook connections and the willingness of generous educators to share a bit of themselves became a wonderful resource that is now available for teachers to explore with their students.

I asked a simple question, "What's in your Fridge?" I got 21 fridges from around the world, an unbeatable multicultural gastronomic richness.

Fridges Around the World

View more presentations from Carla Arena

Here are some ideas to work with such a wonderful fridge collection:

- In my case, I asked my students to identify my fridge and to tell me why they thought it was mine.

- I also asked them to identify which fridges were Brazilian (many of my friends contributed to it), but you can also ask about other nationalities and even prepare a quiz with how many fridges are from Europe, North America, South America, etc...

- Joel Josephson created a Facebook group to have people share what is in their fridges today:  . Students could take photos of their fridges and talk what's in them in the group, sharing with a real audience. 

- You can explore the people behind those fridges. What kind of lives they have, how many people there are in the house. Powerful storytelling opportunity.

- Students can compare different fridges, saying how different or similar they are. The teacher can explore with the whole group if there are significant differences in the fridges related to different cultural backgrounds or not.

This is just the starting point, because, in fact, I needed those fridges to practice count and non-count expressions related to food, but the opportunity for critical thinking and going beyond was simply unmissable with all this Facebook collaborative effort.

Any other ideas for such wonderful classroom material?

If you need to know where the fridges come from, let me know. I'd be more than glad to share the information with you. 


  1. Genius idea! I really like it. 'Cool' way to personalize learning and make it relevant. Thank you for posting about this. Opens up a line of new ideas in my mind. :)

    1. Dear Laura,

      I'm glad you've enjoyed it and was inspired by it. Feel free to use it and to share your own ideas with us.

  2. A great way to entice more people to clean their refrigerators, Carla!

    Simple ideas like this could generate a lot of discussion in classes.

    I may steal this idea and try it on the English language learning and practicing Ning site that I manage.

    Maybe... "What's in your grocery cart?"

    1. Dear Holly, this would be a lovely idea: people send their fridge picture, describe what is in it, and then they could find ways to "clean" their refrigerators maybe by asking friends to help them with some recipes using the products they have in their fridge. Recycled food!

      As for the grocery cart, that would be a fantastic idea, just like what's in your shopping list!

      By the way, today I checked your Ning. Great discussions taking place there. Loved the lecture one. You are a true inspiration, Holly!

  3. Great personalized lesson plan, Carla. It was a pleasure to contribute.

    1. Thanks, Isabela, for your great contribution.

  4. Hi Carla - I guess straight away that the fridges with GIANT quantities of coke and sodas are South Americain - I was totally amazed by the fact that houseguests from Columbia and Argentina absolutely NEVER drank water!
    In my fridge and that of my friends, it would be rare to find even a single can of coke!
    Here's some great pics which illustrate the point I had in mind ;-)

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  6. AHa, what a funny event I experienced here after ensuring my first entrance! Wanted to look for an affordable and reliable fridge repair service in our area and browsing randomly keeping the fact in my consideration. But when I found the title of your post on the search page, I had to stumble and prompted to hit on to examine what fridge treasure you recovered for us. Just amazing. You made the freezing concept so inviting.


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