¡Juguemos!

I’m always looking for fun games to play in the classroom. Students love it and when done right it is a fantastic way to get the kids up and out of their seats and learning the language in a fun way.  I have struggled though with finding enough games so I can play with them frequently enough without them getting bored of the same old thing.  I recently started watching Ellen! Did you know she plays a game with her guests and/or audience pretty much every episode?!  So many great games to choose from that can be adapted for the language class!

Hear are a few that I found to be great for the classroom

1. Heads Up! (this is an app but you can always make your own cards and have students play in groups – there is a Spanish version and one with just pictures too!)

2. 5 second rule – have students name 3 things in different categories in under 5 seconds.  I already started my list and have 8grado_Endofyear_5secondrule already!

3.  60 seconds – Students answer as many questions as possible in 60 seconds. Student with most questions answered at the end wins.

You can find more examples of her games http://www.ellentv.com/tags/Games/

What games do you play in class!?

¡Relámpago!

With many of us doing review, games really come in handy.  This year, we really don’t want to do a review unit but instead we are creating a unit that teaches new material but at the same time recycles the main concepts of last year.  Games are so great for this.

One of our department goals this year is to create an environment for more cooperative learning.  We have a new RTI initiative and one of our beliefs is that through more group work we will have the opportunity to have more one on one time with the students.  We’ve spent a lot of department time discussing this and sharing ideas for cooperative learning games and activities.

One activity that came up is one I now call “relámpago” or lightning.  For this game I create a set of cards with questions, prompts or scenarios.  On the card I have the question/prompt/scenario as well as the possible answer(s).  I give each group (usually 4-5 students) the set of cards and pick a leader.  In the first round, the leader is charged with the task of picking a card from the deck and asking the question to one student.  If the student gets the answer correct, they keep the card, if not, the card goes into the lightning round pile.  The leader does this with the rest of the students in the group until they have gone through all the cards.  In the relámpago, or lightning round, the leader then takes the cards that were left from the previous round and one at a time asks each question. The students in the group have to try to answer the question quickly – if they get it right they keep the card.  The student with the most cards at the end wins!  You can then choose another leader and play again or not.  I also use these cards for ask, ask, switch speaking activity.

I’ve made a few sets of relámpago for different topics and recently uploaded a restaurant themed one to TPT. Check it out 🙂

This particular unit is vocab heavy – what strategies do you use with your students to help them learn key words and phrases?  What cooperative games do you play?

Around the world

In a few of my previous posts I discussed how I wanted to incorporate more games into my lessons. Not only do the students enjoy playing games but they really do learn best through interactive and fun activities.

Around the world is a game I’ve played for years and the kids really like it because it can get pretty competitive.  I’ve made a few Around the World PowerPoint activities to go along with different topics we are covering in class.  I’ve uploaded them to my TPT site if you’re interested.

You can also play without a Powerpoint of course, but I like having a visual for the students too. To play, have the students get into a circle – they can stand or you can move your desks.  You then decide on a topic – say food vocabulary and then have the first students compete to give an answer.  You can give a clue, show a picture or say it in English.  The student who gets the answer correct, moves on and competes with the next person.  I usually give a prize to the student who has made it around the most spots.

What games do you play with your students?

¡Alto!

My students LOVE this game and request it almost daily.  One thing I strive to do is to make learning fun so I’m always on the search for great learning games- not games that will just kill time but games that will really help my students with their language learning.  I came across the vocabulary review game ALTO a few years ago on the http://www.bablingua.com blog, tried it and I absolutely love it and thought it would be worth sharing.  It’s basically like the game scategories where you are given several categories and have a certain amount of time to complete them.  This is the same idea.

To play, first create a table with several columns- one for each topic you’d like to review/practice.  Then to play you just give your class a letter and their task is to complete each category with a word that begins with the letter you gave them.  I don’t usually time them and the group who calls out ALTO first gets a point. Below is an example of what we did today in class.   I do mine on the board and the students just use scrap paper but you could always make up a board in word.  Another important thing to remember is to prepare the letters ahead of time, especially at the novice level where they don’t have too much vocabulary.

What games do you play in class?

Alto board

¡Juguemos!

There’s really something to be said about getting kids moving around and playing in the classroom.  It really makes a difference in their learning!  And… they LOVE it. So why not?  My goal this year has been to incorporate more games and cooperative activities in my curriculum.  In the next few posts I’ll share some of the games I play and hopefully get some ideas from you!

One game my students love is Alrededor del mundo or Around the world.  I have a PPT I use and adapt for different topics.  I then have the students create a circle around the room.  To play I have the first two students compete to answer a questions, the winner then moves on and competes with the next person and so on until a person makes it around the world and back to their spot.  They love it because they get to move around and middle schoolers love to compete.  I usually give the winner a sticker or bookmark!

What games do you play with your students?

Here is an around the world ppt I have for verbs on TPT!

Games to practice body parts

In my quest to find authentic resources to teach the vocabulary for body parts, I came across the following children’s games online.

My plan is to give the students a handout with images of the body parts, and as they are playing the games they will discover and learn the body parts vocabulary.  On my previous posts, I shared some great songs I use to teach body parts too, definitely check them out- the kids love them!

http://nea.educastur.princast.es/repositorio/RECURSO_ZIP/1_ibcmass_u01_identidad/index.html

http://conteni2.educarex.es/mats/11361/contenido/index2.html

http://www.vedoque.com/juegos/juego.php?j=vocabulario

http://www.juntadeandalucia.es/averroes/carambolo/WEB%20JCLIC2/Agrega/Infantil/Cuerpo%20y%20su%20cuidado/contenido/index.html

D0 you have any online body parts vocab games you use?