How to Play Matamoscas in Spanish Class

Have you played Matamoscas before? The flyswatter game is a HUGE hit with students and can be used with any vocabulary. Win-win! 



Write the vocabulary words you want students to review on the whiteboard. Here, there, and everywhere. (Pro tip: Have a TA? This is a great thing for them to do for you!) 


1. Divide the class into two teams. (read about how I quickly put students into groups using index cards HERE.) Give them 30 seconds to come up with a team name and write the names on the board. If they cannot come up with a team name in that amount of time, make something up for them. “I Love Justin Bieber” is one of my personal favorites. 

2. Instruct students to line up in two single-file lines facing the whiteboard. The first person in line should be 8-10 feet from the whiteboard. Hand the first person in each line a flyswatter. In a pinch, rolled-up construction paper works, too. (If you have a TA, now is the time to ask them to stand/sit on the other side of the whiteboard from you so they can help you determine who hit the correct vocabulary word first.) 

3. For Spanish class, tell students that you are going to say a vocabulary word in English. The first person to touch the Spanish version of that word with their flyswatter will earn one point for his/her team. If someone in line shouts out the answer, the other team will earn a point. Tell them no shoving, hitting, etc. They also can’t just go up and hit every single word until they get lucky and touch the correct one.

4. Call out vocabulary words in English one at a time. The first person to touch that word in Spanish will earn one point for his/her team! Increase engagement and understanding for everyone, not just the two hitting the board, by asking the whole class “¿Cómo se dice ____?” after each word and getting them all to shout the word in Spanish back to you. 

5. The team with the most points at the end wins! 


  1. Instead of writing the vocabulary words, hang up pictures for them. Call out the word in Spanish and the first person to touch the correct picture earns a point.
  2. An awesome Spanish teacher named Katherine shared this idea: Draw a body on the board and call out body parts in Spanish!
  3. Also from the amazing Katherine: Draw a map of Central and South America and call out the names of Spanish-speaking countries.
  4. Use a labeled map and call out the names of capitals. First person to touch the correct country gets a point!
  5. Use a picture of a house and call out different vocabulary words like rooms in the house and furniture.
  6. For more advanced students, use synonyms or antonyms.
  7. Use pictures of clocks and call out times in Spanish.
  8. Students learning numbers? Write simple math problems in Spanish and call out answers. For example, write dos + dos = ? on the board and call out cuatro.
  9. For days of the week or months of the year, you could write them on the board and ask students for the one that comes before or after whatever word you say.
  10. For family vocabulary, you could draw a family tree and call out vocabulary words. First person to touch the correct spot on the family tree wins!
  11. Like with body parts, draw a body on the board. This time, however, call out clothing vocabulary and have students point to where that piece of clothing is worn. For example, call out zapatos and the first person to touch the feet gets a point.
  12. Students learning emotions? Draw emoji-like faces on the board and call out emotion words in Spanish. The first person to touch the corresponding face gets a point!
  13. To practice prepositions of place, draw an object on the board. Call out different prepositions and have students point to wherever on the board that word would be in relation to the object. For example, call out a la izquierda de and the first person to touch to the left of the object gets a point.
  14. For direct or indirect object pronouns, write the pronouns on the board. Read a sentence and have students race to touch the correct pronoun that would be used to replace the direct or indirect onject pronoun in the sentence. You could even reward a bonus point if the student can give you the new sentence using the direct or indirect object pronoun!

Like this game idea? I bet you would LOVE the basketball game! Click here for a blog post about how to play.

I hope this Spanish game idea helps! If you enjoyed this Matamoscas post, I would love it if you would pin it so others can enjoy it, too! 👇🏻 Thanks and have a great day!

Let’s connect! Follow me on TpTFacebook, and Instagram!


One Response

  1. yipee! This is a great idea. we did it in class it was a lot of fun and laugh. We reviewed for spelling and translation tests.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *