Halloween Reverse Taboo speaking activity

Image Credit: Alexas_Fotos on Pixabay.com

A quick Halloween activity for the classroom aimed at intermediate and higher level  students with a focus on speaking fluency and revision of Halloween vocabulary.

The idea for this activity came from a session I attended in September at the British Council’s Annual Teachers’ Conference in Bilbao.  Silvia Benítez and Mª Antonia Castro of TESOL-Spain gave a talk packed full of fun vocabulary based activities .  Reverse Taboo was one of them.

Edit: post now update with an additional crossword activity to pre teach the main halloween vocabulary

Reverse taboo.


  • Print and cut up cards.
  • A previous activity to ensure knowledge of  halloween vocabulary

sample reverse taboo card

Just like in normal taboo a card is taken and seen by one student from the group.  On each card is a taboo word and 5 more words.  The main aim is that students have to get the other members of the group to guess the taboo word.  However, this time rather than not being allowed to use any of the 5 words on the card,  the student with the card must try to use all 5 of the totally unconnected and random words in their description before the other students guess the main taboo word.

This activity might best be done in the later stages of a halloween themed class after a halloween crossword or vocabulary matching activity so students would be familiar with the main words in the activity.

Worksheet links

pre-game crossword to pre-teach main halloween vocabulary:


Crossword (updated OneDrive link): http://tinyurl.com/y9mnf33s

PDF verson: halloween vocab crossword 2017

cards pages


Cards sheet (updated OneDrive link): http://tinyurl.com/y9o6u3ng


PDF cards sheet (alternative version 2): halloween reverse taboo

Image credits for handout: pixabay.com & Wikimedia.org

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