Inside: End of the year games for Spanish class.
The end of the year can be… interesting, right? Everyone is tired, you have run out of ideas, testing has already been done, and summer is on everyone’s mind. Here are some ideas that work with ANY unit or theme and put all the summer energy to constructive use.
(And check out my Spanish learning games page for even more ideas!)
End of the Year Games in Spanish
1. The Marker Game
Divide the class into two groups, and assign numbers to each group (so you’ll have two 1’s, two 2’s, etc.) Have paired numbers sit across from each other, with a marker or object in between.
Option 1: Tell the students to do something– touch their own eyes, sing, say hello, etc. Then randomly say “Agarra el marcador!” and the pairs race to grab the marker (or soft object) first.
Option 2: Call out true/false statements. True statement, students race to grab the marker, and false statements they don’t touch it. See the video below to understand how to play and keep score!
2. 20 Preguntas
Play Veinte Preguntas to review people, places, and words from the series. (Give the students some basic structures and phrases if necessary: ¿Es una persona? ¿Es un lugar? ¿Es una cosa?)
3. Bracket Activity
Do a bracket tournament and vote on any topic. It could be food, songs you learned this year, etc. Use my March Madness bracket PPT here to project a bracket on the board and list the items. Designate one wall for the upper choice and one for the lower choice. Call out “¿Agua con gas, o café?” for example, and the students vote by moving to one side of the room or the other.
Or make it beautiful like this one!
Divide the class into two groups. Write a word on the board, and draw a slash after it. The first team has to write a word that starts with the last letter written, then draw a slash. The second team writes word starting with the last letter of that word, and so on. No words may be repeated, and you can adjust the rules for what words are allowed (ie, they must contain at least 3 letters).
5. Teléfono escrito / Draw, Write Pass
This is like the game Telephone, except with drawings and written words. You can review anything, and it’s a zero prep activity.
6. Manzanas a Manzanas
This game is awesome for practicing opinions and adjectives. I have a free download with instructions to play, or you can make your own cards. To play, you will need adjective cards and noun cards. For the noun cards, use whatever vocabulary you want to review.
Put the green adjective cards in the middle, face down. Deal 5-7 red noun cards to each player. Designate a “judge” or juez for the first round. The judge turns the first green card over, and the players put the card they think the judge will pick to match the adjective in the middle. The judge mixes the cards, turns them over, and picks his or her favorite. Whoever that card belongs to keeps the green card as the first point. The leftover red cards can be recycled into the red card pile. The play continues in a circle, with the players taking turns judging.
Model for your class how judges would talk about the cards they are evaluating. For example: La manzana es pequeña. El elefante no es pequeño. or, if it’s something plural: Las manzanas son pequeñas. Los elefantes no son pequeños.
This one is FUN when you have a year’s worth of inside jokes and references as a class. Students sit in a circle and write phrases on slip of paper. Divide the class into 2 or more teams by counting 1-2. For each team’s turn, set a timer (1-2 minutes).
1st round (actions): Team 1 begins as a player draws a slip. That student acts out the phrase. When the team guesses correctly, the next player on Team 1 draws another slip and the play continues until the time is up. The timer is set again for the other team, and turns continue until all the slips are gone. Count the slips and give those points to their teams.
2nd round (verbal clues): This round is the same as the first, except that the students must use clues in Spanish. If the slip says va a la casa, for example, the students could say cuatro palabras, es como camina, corre o advanca, donde vivo, etc. This will be very difficult for beginners, so you may want to let students make word webs for the phrases before playing, to brainstorm and think of related words and synonyms. This is great practice for circumlocution.
3rd round (one-word clues): This round is the same as the second, except that the students must only use one word. If the phrase is va a la casa, the student could say vivo, and the team has to guess the phrase from this one clue.
*In the original game, the actions are for the third round and that’s supposed to be the hardest round. For students learning another language, that is probably the easiest, so I made it first.
Choose a letter of alphabet. Set a time limit (probably 2 minutes) . Everyone should think of a word that begins with that letter for each category. The trick is to try to think of creative words, because at the end of the time limit the students take turns reading their answers out loud. If anyone else has that word, it gets crossed out for everyone.
Example: The letter is M. la comida: manzana, la ropa: medias, en la escuela: mapa, los adjetivos: malo, los verbos: mirar
The first student reads his or her words. Other students have also written malo and manzana, so those words are crossed out. Three words are left: the student got 3 points that round. It is best to arrange students in small groups of 3-4, and have them compare answers at the end of each round.
Get free game sheets for Categorías here!
9. ¿Quién es?
Choose an object (anything small). Choose one student to be it, and have them go out to the hall. Give the item to one of the students. “It” comes in, and asks yes/no questions to find out who has the item. (It may help to have everyone stand up and sit when they are ruled out. For example, it says: Es un chico? It’s not, so all the chicos sit down.) The competition can come from seeing who can guess in the fewest number of guesses.
My students absolutely love this, and it’s probably my favorite end of the year game (though it works anytime!). Martina Bex has a free printable and good explanation. It includes everything we want: comprehensible input, interpersonal communication, and listening. The printable includes detailed instructions, but here’s the gist: this is a role-playing game, in which certain students are assigned to be the Mafia, other as citizens, and some as doctors and police. The mafia is trying to eliminate the entire “town” before the citizens discover them and vote them out of the game.
You have to check out Martina’s post! It’s a perfect way to end the year and let the students loose with everything they have learned.
If you have a few weeks that need some fresh content, the BBC’s beginner’s Spanish series Mi Vida Loca is also a great option. Most of the ideas below are gathered from my series on Games and Ideas for Mi Vida Loca. I have free activities from Episodes 1-5 available, and an entire Activity Pack available as well.