Money Vocabulary - Taboo Game

Resource Type
Worksheets & short activities
Resource Level
CEFR level C1

Aim of the Game

Learners explain lexical items on the theme of money to each other without using the words that would help them do so most easily, forcing them to paraphrase or explain through context. The team that guesses the most items in a given time limit are the winners.



First of all, explain to the learners that they are going to revise money vocabulary through a popular English word game - Taboo. Elicit the meaning of the word taboo and explain how it relates to the idea of the game - the learners have to explain money lexis to their team mates without saying certain given words.

Split the class up into groups of six.

Give out a pack of Taboo cards to each group of six learners.

Split the groups up into two teams of three.

Explain the learners are going to play the game in teams of three, competing against the other team in their group.

One learner from each team goes first. They have to take a card and explain the word at the top of the card to their team mates without using the taboo words written below it. The team mates have to guess the exact phrase written on the card. One member of the opposing team keeps the time. The other two check the explainer does not use the taboo words. The player explains a total of four different words. When all four words have been successfully guessed by a team the clock is stopped and the time taken noted. Then the other team takes a turn.

The game finishes when each player on a team has successfully explained four items. The times taken for each team are added up and the team that took the shortest time is the winner.

If learners do say one of the taboo words a thirty second penalty is added to their time.



Instead of timing how long it takes to explain four items, each learner can be given a time limit of 90 seconds in which to explain as many words as possible. This version is more pressurised and is better suited to stronger classes. If learners use their mother tongue a time penalty can also be added.


There is also a blank version so you can adapt to your own activity.