The Shame Game

You could make this game work in SO MANY CONTEXTS!  🙂  My Spanish 4 is reading the novel Problemas en Paraiso as part of our unit on Narcoviolence.  The novel is a super easy read so I am trying to add in some deeper types of grammar reps and this game was a fun way to do some “have you ever…”  In Problemas, Tyler and his mom are getting ready for a trip to Mexico but he is very ashamed of the way she behaves.  He tells her not to forget that she is 40! 😉

Since we saw him get embarrassed in Chapter 1 because she is in love with his Orthodontist and in chapter 2 because she is taking a bikini on the trip to Mexico, I thought the “Shame Game” would be a fun way to wrap up the chapter.

Other possible uses… the Waiting Game… the Dating Game… the Blame Game… etc.

The full instructions and my Shame Game questions are attached but here is the gist of the activity: Give each student 2 mints or other candies in a wrapper (I had a bag of mini tootsie rolls that worked great!).  Have students answer the questions about a time they were ashamed (you could make one about times they had to wait, people they’ve dated, things they’ve been blamed for, etc).  Put the surveys at their feet and then begin to play.  Re-read question 1.  If they marked yes, they should pass a candy to the right.  If they marked no they do not have to pass a candy. Some may get stopped for a while without any candy because the person before them wasn’t embarrassed by some of the things.  That’s ok.  The winner will be the person who has the most candy (which means the person who was hardest to embarrass!)

The Shame Game chapter 2

Author: senoracmt

I began teaching Spanish in Illinois in 1994. I have taught levels 1-4 in a small rural high school, 8th grade introductory Spanish, Biology 1, and 101 and 102 at the community college level. My Spanish classes are partnered with the community college to offer students 8 semester hours of dual credit on completion of Spanish 4. In 2011 I met Carol Gaab and Kristy Placido and have since co-authored the book "La hija del sastre" with Carol Gaab and authored the novels "La Calaca Alegre", "Bianca Nieves y los 7 toritos." "Vector," "48 horas" and "Bananas" through Fluency Matters. In 2006 I became National Board certified and I have been serving as a mentor both for candidates seeking certification in world languages other than English and a virtual mentor for candidates in all certificate areas. I completed my Masters degree in Spanish education in 2011 and did my research on the use of Understanding by Design to create meaningful cultural units for the language classroom. I am a frequent presenter on this topic, please consider me if you are interested in a workshop on backward design. In 2013 I was named the ICTFL Foreign Language teacher of the year and in 2014 I was selected as CSCTFL's teacher of the year. In November of 2014 I was lucky enough to be one of the five finalists for the ACTFL National Teacher of the Year in San Antonio, TX. What a "Cinderella" experience! You can reach me via email at senoracmt at

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