Co-Co's AdverSmarts Teacher's Guide


Co-Co’s AdverSmarts: An Interactive Unit on Food Marketing on the Web is an educational game for young children. The purpose of the game is to teach five- to eight-year-olds how to recognize commercial websites that target kids through highly engaging and interactive Web environments.

This teacher’s guide contains background information, learning expectations and points of discussion on the strategies and techniques companies use to promote their products and foster brand loyalty online. The guide also includes activities, exercises and handouts for use in the classroom or at home.

Co-Co’s AdverSmarts may be used for personal or educational use only. Worksheets, handouts and activities in this teacher’s guide may be reproduced for personal or educational use without permission, provided the copyright notice remains intact.

The Goal of Co-Co’s AdverSmarts

Co-Co’s AdverSmarts helps children between the ages of five and eight recognize the marketing tactics used in online immersive commercial environments. On these types of websites, kids interact with brands and products through activities, games and videos. By understanding the rationale behind the elements that make up these online environments, children will recognize the advertising strategies they may encounter while playing on these sites.

The game stresses the importance of being able to recognize the commercial elements in these environments so kids will recognize virtual playgrounds for what they are – prolonged and interactive commercials.


In the game, students meet Co-Co Crunch, a talking cereal box who needs help designing his new website. Co-Co explains to players that advertising companies use gimmicks on websites to promote products and brands to kids and invites them to pick five gimmicks for his new website.

After each choice, Co-Co explains how marketers use that particular gimmick to attract users to the site and to build brand loyalty.