Heads Up and Guess Who - Novice Mid, Japanese 101, Lab 13

Please Note: Many of the activities on the Pathways Project OER Repository were created by upper-division students at Boise State University and serve as a foundation that our community of practice can build upon and refine. While they are polished, we welcome and encourage collaboration from language instructors to help modify grammar, syntax, and content where needed. Kindly contact pathwaysproject@boisestate.edu with any suggestions and we will update the content in a timely manner.  — The Pathways Project

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. Many of these activities offer an English Version that is “language-agnostic” to provide language instructors from around the country a platform to remix these instructional materials, infusing them with their target language and culture! The activities within the Pathways Project OER Repository seek to help students solidify their interpersonal speaking and interpretive skills through task-based situations or communicative activities. These activities should be facilitated in the target language for approximately 90% (or more), per the recommendation of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.

How to use the WLRC Repository’s Activities:

1. Use the Activity as is:

Before you begin:

  • Most activities are 30 minutes in duration, unless otherwise specified.
  • Be sure to read through the activity description, and review the list of required materials. You will notice that the activity materials are also highlighted in yellow throughout the activity instructions.

If you have any suggestions about grammar, syntax, and content, please kindly contact pathwaysproject@boisestate.edu.

2. Remix for Your Language Classroom:

When you are ready to begin remixing the activity, in order to adapt it for the needs of your language classroom, simply click the blue “Remix This Resource” button at the top of your screen. This will then take you to a screen with a NEW, editable version of this activity. The text provided in purple is a suggestion of what you might say to your students in the target language, and may be altered for different levels and age groups. All activities have “NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do” statements, a warm-up, a main activity, and a wrap-up.

Many of the activities include printable cards and other instructional materials such as Google Slideshows. If you would like to make changes to these materials for your classroom, follow the instructions below:

  • Google Slideshows:
    • To begin, go to File -> Copy to create an editable version of the slideshow.
    • Once finished with your changes, please complete the following steps to share:
    • Click on Share
    • Who Has Access
    • Ensure link sharing is on and allow external access.
  • Materials Saved as PDF: Please email pathwaysproject@boisestate.edu and we will provide you with an editable copy. Please allow up to two business days for a response. For YouTube videos and other websites, hyperlinks are provided. 

3. Adapt for Another Language:

  • See the linked English Version at the top of the activity (English Version may not be available for all activities)

お題当てクイズと 私は誰でしょうゲーム / Heads Up and Guess Who - Japanese, Novice Mid


Students will learn to describe people and items using learned descriptive vocabulary. Students will practice guessing items and people based on the descriptions provided. 

Proficiency Level:

 Novice Mid


Japanese, Japan, Nakama, Chapter 10, Guess Who, Heads Up

NCSSFL-ACTFL World-Readiness Standards

  • Standard 1.1: Students engage in conversation, provide and obtain information, express feelings and emotions, and exchange opinions. 
  • Standard 1.2: Students understand and interpret written and spoken Japanese on a variety of topics.

Idaho State World Language Standards:

  • COMM 1.1: Interact and negotiate meaning (spoken, signed, written conversation) to share information, reactions, feelings, and opinions. 
  • COMM 2.1: Understand, interpret, and analyze what is heard, read, or viewed on a variety of topics.

NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements:

  • I can use descriptive language to explain a certain verb, noun, etc.
  • I can describe people's physical features.
  • I can identify items and people based on descriptions.

Materials Needed:

Heads Up Cards (Warm-up), one per class

Guess Who (Main Activity), four sets per class


1. Begin by introducing the Can-Dos for today’s activity.

"こんにちは。今日の Can-Do Statementsは..."

2.  "Heads Up" Face the Heads Up cards upside down. Students will get in groups. One person from the team will be the guesser. He/She will have the cards above their head. There will be two ways to play this gesture game: acting or describing. Verb cards will be blue. They are only allowed to act it out. Noun cards will be yellow. They are only allowed to describe the word. 

Time limit is 3 minutes!


“Dividing students into groups. One person in the group will be the respondent. Respondents will be able to see their cards on the forehead without looking at the cards. Cards There are two types of words: the blue card has verbs written on it, the students use gestures to explain the verbs on the card, and the yellow cards are nouns. In order for the respondent to understand the nouns written in, explain in words. "

Main Activity

1. In the same groups, students will now play Guess Who. Each group will have two sets of Guess Who cards. 

“生徒たちは同じグループでもう1つのゲームをします。私は誰でしょうゲームです。生徒たちは色んな年齢のキャラクターの中から1人自分のキャラクターをGuess Who cards の中から選び、他の生徒の選んだ人が誰かをあてるゲームです。交互にいろんな質問をします。生徒たちはYes, Noで答える質問しかできません。” 

“Students will play another game in the same group. Who will I be? The students will choose one of the characters of different ages from the Guess Who cards It ’s a game where someone chooses to ask. The questions are alternated, and students can only answer questions with Yes, No. ”

3. Use this model for an example:

        Example card: おばあさん、りんごが好き- Grandmother likes apples

        1. 男性ですか?- Are you male?  
            1. いいえ- No 

        2. りんごが好きですか- Do you like apples?             

             1. はい- Yes

        3. おばあさんですか- Are you grandmother? 
            1. はい- Yes


Ask the following questions to finish the lab: 

1. あなたはどんな人が好きですか?

1. What kind of person do you like?

2. あなたは何人家族ですか?

2. How many people are in your family?

3.  あなたの一番いい友達はどんな人ですか?

3. What is your best friend like? 

End of lab:

• Read Can-Do statements once more and have students evaluate their confidence. 
(Use thumbs up/thumbs down or download our student cards.) 
• Encourage students to be honest in their self-evaluation.
• Pay attention, and try to use feedback for future labs!

NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements:

  • I can use descriptive language to explain a certain verb, noun, etc.
  • I can describe people's physical features
  • I can identify items and people based on descriptions. 

Return to top