Monday, August 3, 2015

¡Chancho Va!

Years ago, when I was living in Mendoza, Argentina.  I had the great fortune of meeting a group of fun-loving and energetic people who enriched my life beyond my ability to explain here.  We shared music, talk, secrets, wine, and games.  Games are some of my favorites and, to every extent possible and reasonable, I try to include a game once per week as a part of my lesson plans.

Today Spanish V is concluding their review of command forms in Spanish - all of them (except vosotros).  And I was struggling with a way to work a game into the lesson, until I remembered a game I learned in Mendoza - Chancho Va.

Basically, you try to get sets of four cards (all four queens, for example).  You deal out all the cards and then, when everyone is ready, you all say in unison "Chanco va" and you give one card from your hand to the person directly to your right.  (You will, of course, receive one from the person on your left in the same move.)  You decide whether to keep the card or pass it along in the next round.  Everyone gets a card and discards every round.

In Mendoza we played that when someone got a set of all four cards, they put them down and put their hand over them.  Then everyone would scramble to put their hand down next.  The last person to put their hand down was the "chancho" (which is an Argentine word for pig).

There is a similar game, called Pig, in the USA that I was unaware of - but I found some directions on how to play Pig online.  It might be easier for you to understand their directions than mine.

So, how does all this work with command forms?  You might be wondering, since that is how I started this blog post, after all.  Well, what I did was create card sets with command forms of the same verb.  (Ir: Ve, No Vayas, Vaya, Vayan) (Tener: Ten, No Tengas, Tenga, Tengan).  And we played until a person had two matches - to get in some extra practice.

The result?  I ultimately had to give the directions in English but, once I had done that, the students took off and did a great job.  I got so nostalgic when I heard the different groups saying "Chanco va" all in unison.  It really made me wish I was back in Mendoza - even though it is winter there now.  There were some lovely coffee shops that were just the thing on a cold winter's day.

Want to play command form Chancho Va with your students?  Click here or on the image above for a set of command cards.  Or, you can make your own, of course.

I hope it's a great week, amigos!

Hasta pronto,



ProfeSpain8 said...

This game reminds me of Spoons. It sounds fun though!

Anne Karakash said...

I don't know how to play Spoons, but I'm always interested in learning new games. Is there a good place online where I can read the directions or, better yet, a video that explains it? ¡Gracias! --AnneK

Dari said...

Spoons is basically the same concept as Chancho Va, but instead of putting your hands down when you get a set of 4, you grab a spoon from the middle of the table. If you see a spoon disappear, you grab, too. The person left without a spoon gets a letter. When you have spelled "Spoon", you are out of the game. We never play the last rule. We simply let everyone keep playing until we're done :).

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