Name Game

EEEEEKKKK! School starts on MONDAY!

MONDAY! Already!! I’m excited and nervous and squirmy and nearly ready to go! This starts lucky year 13 and I’ve got something new up my sleeve to get to know my upper level kiddos. (This would totally work with 2s and above, but this year I’m only teaching Spanish 1 and Spanish 4…and this definitely won’t work for my 1s on the first day of school!)

Here’s a game inspired by the You/Me/Right/Left game that Lauren Tauchman wrote about in her Building Community post.

First I’ll project this slide, ask my students to tell their partner what the questions mean, and then project the translations, just so everyone’s Spanish brain gets a chance to ease into it…  I’ll leave this projected during the entire activity.

Como te llamas.png

Then we’ll all form a circle (ahhh…just one of the joys of being deskless!) and I’ll stand in the middle.  I’ll point to a student and ask one of the questions.

  • If I ask ¿Cómo te llamas? (What’s your name?) the student will respond with their own  name. No need for complete sentences 🙂
  • If I ask ¿Cómo me llamo? (What’s my name?) she or he will say Señora Chase.
  • If I ask ¿Cómo se llama? (What’s his or her name?) the student will respond with the name of the student on their right or left (they decide which and just say one name)
  • If I ask ¿Cómo se llaman? (What are their names?) the student will respond with both the names of their classmates to their right and left.

As soon as I ask a question, I’ll put my hand in the air and count down with my fingers from 5 to 1, indicating the time they have left to answer. If they answer in the allotted time, they’re safe and I’ll point at a different student, ask another question and begin the countdown again. If the student say the wrong name OR panics OR doesn’t say anything before time runs out, she or he will move into the middle position and pick a student to ask a question to and the game continues.

And because I want my kiddos to get to know their classmates’ names, I want them to shuffle around so after we play a few rounds I’ll add in the muévete activity (Which, BTW is one of my favorite ways to wake kids up, move them around, and still give them lots of input!? 

So I’ll say something like Muévete si tienes la clase de arte este año (move if you have an art class this year) or Muévete si vives cerca de la escuela (move if you live close to school) or Muévete si te gusta la clase de español (Move if you like Spanish class). I’ll speak slowly and use words they’ll understand. Students will listen and swap spots with another student in the circle if it applies to them. My plan is to do 3-4 Muévete si…. then back to the name game for a few rounds.

I’m going to try it and I invite to you add it to your plans if you’re looking for something a little Spanish, a little movement and a little get to you know all rolled into one. Check back next week…I’ll try to remember to record a video of the madness!

Happy Back to School, everyone! Here’s to our best year yet!


  1. I am getting ready to use this game with my incoming new semester students. It worked really well in the fall. Thank you for sharing it!!


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