The Auction, Novice Mid, English Foundation

About the Boise State World Languages Resource Center (WLRC) Language Activity Repository

The activities provided by the Boise State World Languages Resource Center (WLRC) serve as foundational activities which can be adapted by any language and scaled up or down on the proficiency scale. In other words, the activities are “language-agnostic” to provide language instructors from around the country the platform to remix these instructional materials, infusing them with their target language and culture!

This activity was created by upper-division language students working in the World Languages Resource Center at Boise State University. Our activities seek to help students solidify their interpersonal speaking and interpretive listening skills through task-based situations or communicative activities. We recommend using these activities to help reinforce the content students are learning, allowing the students time to feel comfortable using the unit’s vocabulary and grammar structures through application. Further, these activities should be facilitated in approximately 90% (or more) in the target language, per the recommendation of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.

Using the WLRC Repository’s Activities:

When you are ready to begin remixing the activity, in order to adapt it for your target language and audience, simply click the “Remix This Resource” button at the top of your screen. The text provided in purple is a suggestion of what you might say to your students and should be changed to the target language. 

Most activities contain a connected chapter, two to three “NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do” statements, a warm-up, main activity, and a wrap-up. In addition to the instructions, some activities may include a “cheat sheet” containing the target vocabulary and grammar structures emphasized in the activity. Though most of the lab materials are provided, a computer, projector, printer, and laminator may also be needed to fully utilize materials. 

Many of the activities include printable cards and other instructional materials. If you would like to adapt these materials for your language, please email WLRCLAR@gmail.comand we will provide you with an editable copy. For YouTube videos and other websites, hyperlinks are provided. 


- Boise State World Languages Resource Center

The Auction! Activity

Proficiency Level:

Novice Mid

This activity is to expose students to other types of currency of Spanish speaking countries. Students will practice the numbers in Spanish and will use adjectives to describe items that they can sell and buy.


Classroom objects, numbers, adjectives, buying, selling, auction

Relevant Can-Do statements:

  • I can ask and understand how much something costs
  • I can talk about objects at my school or work
  • I can talk about familiar items that I encounter most days

Materials Needed:

Funny Money: Students should receive a total of: 10 reds, 5 teals, 6 yellows, 3 greens, 3 purples, 5 oranges, 1 pink. Must have a total of $1,425(Print & Laminate)

Download: Funny_Money.pdf

Auction Cards(Print & Laminate)

Download: Auction Cards.pdf

Auction Paddles (Print & Laminate)

Download: Auction_Paddlesu.pdf

Instructions(Print & Laminate)

Download: Instructions-Auction.pdf

Can-Do Statement Card (Print & Laminate)

Download: Can_Do.pdf

Google Slideshow(Linked)

Download: Google Slideshow.pdf


  1. Tell the students: We are going to have an auction! Every student is going to have money to buy and sell interesting things.

    “Today we are going to have an auction! Each student will have money to buy and sell interesting things!” (Gesture giving and receiving money)

  2. Give the instruction cards and have them read over for two minutes.

    “Here are the instructions for the auction. You have two minutes to read them (gesture reading the card) and after we will do the auction.”

    Main Activity

  1. Each one of the students will have the same amount of money (they will be in plastic bags, counted already). Tell them to count their money and write the number on the board by spelling out the amount. For example, if they have $1425 they should be writing one thousand and twenty five dollars (in your language)

  2. They will also get an equal amount of items to auction off (try and make sure there is an equal distribution of expensive and cheaper items)

    You will have a few things to sell. What does sell ( in your language) mean?”

  3. Students will go in a circle one at a time to try and sell their item. They will begin with a description of their item that will try and get the other students to want to buy it.

    "You will sell things one by one in a circle. You sill start by describing your thing to convince others to buy it."

  4. The other students will yell out prices they are willing to pay for an item until the amount gets too high and there is only one person left willing to bid that high.

  5. The person who wins the bid will hand their money to the person selling and the person selling will give them the item.

  6. Then the next student will get the chance to sell an item. This will keep going until all items have been sold or time runs out.

  7. Make sure you have enough time at the end to give the students a chance to put the things in the original bags with the same quantities.

    “Now, put the money in all of the bags with the same quantity.”

*** If you have a lab with two students, make sure you also play****

Give yourself a few extra minutes at the end to make sure all the money gets back in the bag. Don't try to do this yourself, ask the students to follow the key on the bag!


Wrap-up questions:

  1. "Would you some of these things in real life?"
  2. "In your opinion, was there anything too expensive?"
  3. "Would you go to an auction in real life?"

End of lab: Can-Do statement check-in... “Where are we?”

  • Read can-do statements and have students evaluate their confidence with cards
  • Encourage students to be honest in their self evaluation
  • Pay attention, and try to use feedback for future labs!

Relevant Can-Do statements:

  • I can ask and understand how much something costs
  • I can talk about objects at my school or work
  • I can talk about familiar items that I encounter most days



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