More Odd Images For Teachers

Here are some more photos I have found that I felt would be useful for language or writing teachers.   If you look at the following images, each and everyone of them should spark off ideas in the fantasy of your students be they kids or adults.

I try and find images that I feel are sufficiently strange or thought provoking so that they are guaranteed to make anyone looking at them stop, think and make up a story about how the situation captured in the photos came about.

For instance, look at this one and stop and consider what it is you are looking at.   Why is he there, getting something out of the wall, putting something into the wall…?  What is the backstory behind his being there in that strange and empty place?   What country?  When? and so on. man staircase

As you can see, an image such as this can lead to endless questions, and thus, if handled correctly, can generate an almost endless stream of ideas.

Or what to think of this one?

head in hole

What on earth is that guy doing?   It seems to me that there are almost endless possibilities in this image.  Why has he apparently dug a small hole in an apparently perfectly good road surface?  I can imagine that it should be possible to write a short story based on this image, one that probably gives away the reason for the man poking his head into that small hole in the very last sentence of the story?

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Bill Yates – Images Of 1973 Tampa

A few days ago I came across an article in an English newspaper all about an American photographer who had just discovered a box full of negatives of photos he had taken in Tampa Florida in 1973, and never actually looked at in all the following years.

Bill Yates is the photographer and this set of images of a roller skating rink that he visited in 1973 looking for subjects to photograph while he was studying to become a professional photographer powerfully document how life was back in 1973 for a lot of people in the USA, and Europe too.



Apparently he went out one evening looking for subjects to photograph and came across the Sweetheart Skating Rink by pure chance, went in and proceeded to take a series of photos, most of which in themselves and at that time, were not of any special interest, and he only saw them as a technical exercise in taking photos of people.  However, looking at them in 2016 they have a very different function – they have become a fascinating window into a sort of world that may still exist, but will look very different in so many ways.

For example, look at these images and tell me what it shows that would be totally impossible in the Western World today……

smoking kids smoking kids02

smoking again

See what I mean?

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Curious And Odd Images

Once again I have made a small collection of images that I think could be useful as idea generators, pictures that kids could easily use to set their fantasy off in order to write entertaining and quirky stories.  And of course, not only kids, all sorts and ages of us could use one or more of these images to be the start point of a story.Early-view-of-Queen-Street-Brisbane-Queensland-ca.-1864

This is a photo of what Brisbane used to look like, which is not really important.  The reason I chose this image is that it shows a town that was very much a frontier town, farm animals wandering around the street, a mud street you may note…  So it seemed to me that there must be dozens of stories lurking in this straight-forward looking photo…

Go for it, and let me know what you (or your students) make of it please.

KKK Ferris

This is plain weird….  Apparently it is a photo of a gang of KKK idiots on a group outing….  What fun they all seem to be having – or at least if they were honest (and brave enough) to show their faces it might be possible to see how they are all laughing and having a great time on that Ferris Wheel…  Anyhow, politics and decency to one side for a minute, this is an epically odd image seems to me, and once again, surely any of you could find a story in it?


Apparently this is a photo of an abandoned Lunatic Asylum, has to be a story there I feel….

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Strange Images For Creative Writing

Continuing my search for images that might be useful to give kids the needed nudge to start to write creatively, here is a collection of extremely odd images of even odder people doing odd things.

To be honest, most of these images seem to me to be completely impossible to find any sort of rational explanation for, but that is precisely why I have chosen them, as in order to explain them one needs to let fantasy rip, and venture out into the uncharted regions of one’s imagination.


You see what I mean?  Try and find an explanation for this one that is not totally insane.


OK, even Yetis need to get to work I suppose……..


Don’t even ask what she is doing!!!!

Very Odd and Funny B&W Photos That Cannot Be Explained (32)

This must be part of some sort of Balkan or Scandinavian folk dance?


Um, yes…………………….


No idea!  But I find the creature on the left deeply worrying….  And why on earth would she want to sit on a small alligator I wonder.

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More Curious Photos To Play With

Here are some more images that I thought might be helpful to you teachers to get your student’s minds moving.    Show them one or more of these and suggest they use them as a starting point for a story.     In fact these images can be used by anyone for a similar purpose.

And for the rest of us, well, they are simply curious, and thought provoking.  At least I find them so.   All of them were taken in the 19th Century, some as early as 1820, and none later than 1890, so all the people in them are now long dead and buried.   This is an aspect of such old photos that never fails to move me.   One gazes at the features of these people, and wonders about their lives, their hopes and dreams, and were their lives good ones or sad ones.. did they live to a ripe old age, or did they die the day after the photo was taken?

So many questions are asked by these images  – endless material for thinking and creating.

So here you go…  A load of images, with no explanations about any of them,as I prefer to leave that up to your imagination.

DP70461 DP279247 DP206647 DP71254

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Odd And Curious Images

Here are another load of odd and intriguing (and mostly inexplicable) images that might be used to spark off a creative writing class in a school, or simply to give your imagination a challenge – What on earth are they all about????

I shan’t attempt to put any sort of title or comment by these images, but simply bung them here and leave it up to you to make of them what you can….  So let your mind go free and see what you can make using these images.

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Amazing And Intriguing Image

In my continuing search for weird and wonderful images that might help teachers inspire their students to flights of fantasy in their writing, I have just found a truly wonderful one.

There absolutely has to be a story in this image, any red blooded writer would be able to put together at the very least some sort of short story about what on earth was happening in this church out in the middle of nowhere – apparently.


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Please do come back and let us share whatever this image produces…. I am intrigued to know what young and fertile minds might make of it.

Odd Photos Of Odd People

As part of my continuing series of curious images that might be of use to teachers as starting points for creative writing, here are another set of inexplicable and weird images for you to enjoy.

I shan’t attempt to describe what they show, or even to attempt to explain them, as several defy any sort of sane explanation in my view…  But they are all thought provoking which is why I chose them.

So here you go…………….

odd people 05 odd people 04 odd people 03

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Egyptian Cats & Little Girl – Has To Be A Story Here.

I have decided to broaden my teacher’s resource offerings.    Originally I intended it to be simply videos that I felt could function as a starting point for story telling in the classroom, but I quickly found that there were loads of amazing photos to be found on the net that would also function remarkably well as sort of idea kick-starters.   So here is the first of these offerings that I hope you will find useful your classroom.


I have no idea what was happening here, but this image has so many elements that it has to be a good source of discussions and story telling.   What on earth is that little girl doing there? Simply playing at being one of those cat statues, or is it the instant before she is shape-changed and zoomed off to a life in ancient Egypt?   There are so many possibilities in this strange image – let your kids loose on it and see where their fantasy takes them.

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Do come back and let us share what your students made of this image….   Good to know what others achieve with such materials……

Like A Girl – Generate Ideas About Gender Roles In Your Classroom.

Continuing my endeavour to build up a useful teachers resource here on my blog, I now offer you a video that could well be used to spark off discussions about the role of gender in how we look at each other.

This shortish video, called “Like a Girl”, is about how western society looks at the way in which we feel girls should behave, and sensibly enough, also shows how damn foolish these preconceptions really are.

Show this video to your class, and then ask them to discuss it, and I suspect you will find that the kids for the greater part agree with what the kids in the video say.  Though, you may well be surprised too by how many seem to agree that girls should behave in a “girlie” fashion…..   People are odd.

A number of issues are looked at in this video, all of which relate to the preconceptions we all have about how girls and women should behave, and happily, the girls and women in the video – and several guys as well, show clearly how daft these ideas actually are.

So, here it is, do let me know if you find this a useful teaching aid or not.

By the way, the people who made this video, have a whole series of videos that will be of real interest to the girls in your classroom, , in which various aspects of being female and growing up are looked at in a straightforward manner, well worth exploring I feel.

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