This time of year can be a bit challenging to keep them in the target language.
Snow days, school dances, and spring break are on their minds!
This is when I’d get out the clothespins to add a little fun to talking in the target language.
HOW TO PLAY
1. Give each person 3 clothespins. They will pin them on their clothes.
2. Explain the rules: The point of the game is to get as many clothespins as possible from other people. You can take a clothes pin when someone speaks in English. You will say “Give me it” in the target language and they give it to you.
2. Quickly introduce the phrase “GIVE ME IT” in your target language.
3. Set how long you will play. Usually I’d set it for 15 minutes or while we are doing an interpersonal speaking activity.
4. Play! They will monitor each other. The person with the most pins at the end wins.
After playing, I noticed a student had decorated her pin. That gave me an idea… I asked her to decorate the pins with some conversational phrases and useful words that they might want to use while talking. She had the idea of cutting out the words from a magazine to add some color.
Possible Words/Phrases: Me too. No way. I don’t think so. I agree. Never. I love it.
STEPS TO DECORATE
- magazines or newspaper to cut out phrases
1. Cut out words and phrases that they may use in a conversation.
2. Glue to the cutouts to the pins with mod podge or regular glue. I found mod podge worked a little bit better in the long run.
Suggestion: Have students decorate them for you!
Comment below if you’ve done this in class or if you have any modifications. I’d love to hear your ideas too!
Happy Teaching! ~Kara
Thanks for sharing this idea. I never try it before but, I’m sure my students will like it. I am thinking first to ask them for all the frases that they use to say. Then, take one frase, teach it in Spanish way and play it for one week. Every week we will play one frase.
I’ve done this before, some students just snatch clothespins from others. So if your group is too competitive this might not be a good game for you. But it has also worked well to help monitor a group, just a thought.
I love this idea. Does anyone have a list already made of phrases to put on the clothespins? (Spanish)
I do this, but never thought to have useful phrases on the pins. BRILLIANT
Hello! This sounds like a wonderful game. Question: so the clothespins have words that are prompts that the students have to talk about without using the actual word that’s on the clothespin? What do the words on the clothespin serve as? are they topics?
Thanks! The words on the clothespin are mostly for decoration. They would lose the clothespin if they spoke in ENGLISH. I did find that they would look up the phrase and try to use them though. I picked the phrases based on some expression that might be used/heard during conversations. Hope that helps!
I have done this for years for extra credit points. I also play to make to remove clothespins from the game. It can be fun but cannot be done on a daily basis. Also, kids really enjoy playing the only game of “Password”. I am not sure if you have it on your website. I have just found you. I appreciate all your help. Distance learning has been a challenge with student engagement.
Welcome! Glad to help. Yes… distance learning has been quite the challenge. As a positive, I believe it is helping teachers to reevaluate what is the most important. I’ve found that engagement isn’t the same as fun… but rather are they truly interested, curious, and doing something that they find meaningful. Many times this was just tweaking my lesson to be more culturally-rich, like a better video that really “sparked” the conversation. Best of luck!