Welcome to my blog. I document my adventures in travel, style, and food. Hope you have a nice stay!

Kings, iPhones and soap

Here is the dilemma: Charles I sold monopolies for the sale and production of soap, in a desperate attempt to become financially independent from parliament. My A Level History students need to know this fact for their exam, but they don't know what the word "monopoly" means, let alone the prospect of its sale. 

Enter a bright idea - a role play that could transport the ingenuities of 17th Century revenue raising to a 21st century analogy. I ask students to get out their phones and I pretend to be King. I ask one student to play the part of Apple CEO Tim Cook, and to give me a brown envelope stuffed with imaginary money. The plan is to seize all non-iPhones, once I, King Nick, receives the pay off. Bingo! Students now understand what "selling a monopoly" actually means... 

...Except it goes wrong. Horribly wrong. The activity is DOA. Why? Every single student - all 20 - have an iPhone, thus there was no need for Tim Cook and the brown envelope. It appears that Apple has, in this small corner of West London at least, cornered the market by the strength of its brand and the quality of its product. Apple needs no uppity monarch to permit its dominance.  




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