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This lesson plan comes from Ryan Full, a Teacher Rabbit in West Virginia. Ryan sent us this lesson plan in the middle of teaching Spanish to Junior High students, finishing his Master's degree and planning a brand new class on game design. Thank you Ryan for your contribution to the Academy! A PDF version of this lesson can be found here.

Spanish 2 – Fluxx en español

  • Teacher: Ryan Full
  • Grade Level(s) 9
  • Subject: Spanish 2
  • Time/Length: 1 class
  1. Student Objective(s): A.Specific Objectives: Given the card game Fluxx en español students will follow directions in a target language, maintain a conversation, discuss to resolve any rules confusion and perform specific tasks based upon continually changing conditions using materials in a second language.

  2. Essential Question(s): Using context clues and previous Spanish knowledge, how well could you determine a strategy for playing out your turn? How well could you respond to moves made by other players?

  3. Lesson Procedure:
    1. Lesson Introduction: Performance and hooking their interest is vital. Make a big production of pretending to look at the teacher text as if to plan an ordinary lesson for the day and then sweep it off the desk/podium to the floor. Begin by telling the class you are wanting to play a game but hint that you want to keep it very quiet so the other classes don’t get jealous.

    2. Lesson Development:
      1. Depending upon the strength of the language skills of the individual students the introduction of the game in English may be skipped. With weaker to moderately skilled students I would recommend beginning in English so they understand the mechanics of the game before the challenge of it in Spanish.
      2. Break the students up into groups of 4-5 students. Make sure you have a heterogeneous mix of skill levels (eg. not all the best students in one group – have them scattered throughout the groups).
      3. Give each group a pack of Fluxx cards in English.
      4. Have them deal out a hand and the instructor explains the rule “Draw one, play one.”
      5. As an entire class take a minute to read the rules on all your cards then choose a leader in each group to take the first turn. Have the entire class take a turn together. Repeat taking turns one at a time as an entire class until one group has a winning condition.
      6. When one group has a winner, call all the groups over to see the winning condition.
      7. Collect all the English versions of Fluxx and put them away.
      8. Ask the students if they would like to play again or if they would rather continue with the book work. Make a big deal out of hating to miss out on class time… Then come up with the brilliant idea of playing the game in Spanish!
      9. In the same groups hand out Fluxx en español.
      10. At this point there should be no English spoken in the room at all. Everyone is to operate in the target language.
      11. As the instructor discusses the game and the rule of “Draw one, play one” in Spanish they should pantomime the actions to convey the meaning of the words.
      12. Allow them adequate time to play the game – if a rules question arises the instructor should do their absolute best to force the students to resolve their dilemma on their own with the instructions for reference.

    3. Lesson Closure: To wrap things up the instructor should ask for a few students to tell stories about who won a game and how they won. It is highly recommended this entire section be done in the target language as well. The kids traditionally love to talk about their victories or otherwise tell humorous stories. If they have worked on imperfecto or preterito then they can also use the past tenses to tell their stories.

    4. Homework: Students are assigned the task of designing cards for a game of Fluxx en español. They could be assigned to make 1 goal and 2 keepers or be assigned to make 2 rules. If the class has some Fluxx blanks they could be given them the next day to actually make the cards to be played at a later date. It is recommended you don’t give them the cards to take home because you don’t want grammatical errors in the game due to serving as negative or bad examples when people are trying to learn.

  4. Student Assessment/Evaluation: Students will be assessed through observation of their understanding. Notes can be taken on concepts and vocabulary that gives students problems and these can be taught or reviewed later. Students will also be assessed through their homework and their successful completion of the assignment in creating rules. To extend the assignment the game could be played with the added cards and then have the students analyze, evaluate, and revise their cards to form something that works well.

  5. Material and/or Resources: 1 Fluxx en español deck for every 4-5 students (4 is preferable)
    An equal number of regular Fluxx decks
    Optional: Fluxx Blanks (1-3 blank cards per student)

  6. Reflection/Modification: Overall the assignment worked very well. The students were engaged the entire time with a good deal of conversation and laughter. Even my quieter kids who rarely speak up in class were happily debating, cheering, and laughing as the game went on. We did not actually make cards using Fluxx Blanks because I didn’t have the funds to buy any to test that portion out.

It should also be noted that once the game was in play the students stopped overanalyzing their own speech which lead to a very natural flow of conversation and discussion as well as utilization of vocabulary words they probably thought they forgot. Once the game took center stage the “paralysis” that can take place in the classroom from performance anxiety completely melted away. It was an excellent experience and is one the students have repeatedly asked to do again. I have kept it held back to use a reward for when students perform well.

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