The h1 element. It makes things bigger and thicker.
The font tag. We use it to change our font (with the face attribute) and its size (with the size attribute).
The bgcolor attribute. We use it to change the background colour of things.
The marquee tag. We use it to create text that scrolls across the screen. Add a bgcolor attribute.
We are many miles and years from validation and separation.
Now, we all know what we should be learning before colour, size etc., and that our styles should be tucked away in a separate stylesheet (or in some style tags at the very least). But it is interesting to note the students’ reaction when their text becomes large, Comic Sansified and animated. Something that would be pretty hard to achieve if we were teaching CSS in addition to HTML.
If this was just about engagement (rather than teaching the right way to do things) it’d be a case of easy to learn at first versus difficult to learn at first but easier later. And if you wanted to hook your students you’d be using the font tag like crazy.