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Friday, October 16, 2015

Discover a fun game for reinforcing any subject ¡Bárrelo!

Bárrelo (A fun game for reinforcement)
Bárrelo is a fun game to help reinforce anything you are teaching in Spanish. But it’s equally useful for any language.  I use the game bárrelo for reinforcing numbers, shapes, and vocabulary words in Spanish.  I came up with the idea of this game when I was at the dollar store earlier this year looking for things to use with my students.  Then I saw this mini cute brush and dust pan set. 

So I bought it even though I did not know then how I will use it. Then the bright idea came to me to use it for some type of game and that’s how “bárrelo” which literally means “sweep it up” came into existence. I ordered a few more sets online since the dollar store didn't have any more.
This game can be played with one student but it is definitely more fun doing it in pairs or even three or four at a time depending on how many of the brush and dust pan set you have. So here is how the game works:
I will use for example numbers since it’s the most common one I use with this game activity. Select the number of students who will be playing at the same time. Give each one a brush and dust pan set. The game is to be played on a smooth and hard surface.  I recommend using the table.  At first try two students, one on each end of the table.  Give each student small number cards from 0 to 10. They can arrange it however they want on the table but it’s preferable to arrange it in random order.  Tell each student that you will call out a number but only when you say “bárrelo” is when they can sweep that number in the dust pan.
If a student sweeps in the number before you say “bárrelo” the number is taken away from that student. After calling out a number, give a few seconds for students to visually locate the number and then say “bárrelo”.  When playing the game, do not call out all the numbers because it would not make it possible to know who the winner is. So after calling six or seven numbers (you can use a little more or a little less. It all depends on your group) then you can check and see who has all the numbers you called out, in the dust pan.

Recommendation for keeping score of the numbers you call out:
You can have a sheet of paper with the numbers 0 to 10 or up to whatever number you are teaching. As you call out the numbers you can cross them out helping you to remember which numbers you called out. At the end the winner or winners are the ones who have all the correct numbers you called out. 
This game is a favorite with my students, especially the 5 years old. They always say to me: “are we going to play bárrelo today?” Here is a short video of the game to give you an idea. This was with one of my 5 year old groups.

To engage the other students that are not participating as yet in the game, you can have those students take turns calling out a number and then the whole group can say “bárrelo” . You could also select students to cross out the numbers that are been called out.
As I mention earlier, this game can be played with pretty much any subject you are teaching. Here are some suggestions you can use this game with:
·         shapes
·         vocabulary words
·         alphabet
·         animals
·         sight words
·         colors
·         etc…
The numbers, shapes and vocabulary pictures to be used with this game can be obtained here for free! Make as many copies needed, laminate and cut them out and use over and over again!
You can create your own sheets for keeping track of the numbers, shapes and vocabulary and so on, but if you prefer you can use the free ones I have provided here
Your feedback, comments, ideas are welcomed! Please share and as usual:
Have Fun!

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