Practise vocal projection with the Shakespeare Insult Generator

There are various versions of the Shakespearean Insult Generator around the internet – probably because it’s a lot of fun.

It can used as a vocal projection exercise – a fun cooldown or “reward” after the other vocal projection exercises perhaps – or it can be used to familiarise students to elements of Shakespeare’s language.

Everyone in the group needs a copy of the words lists:

There are three lists of words: member of the group should take one word from each list and preface it with “thou” to form their insults. For example:

  • “Thou danking dizzy-eyed maggot-pie!”
  • “Thou yeasty sheep-biting harpy!”
  • “Thou rank onion-eyed bum-bailey!”

Form two teams, one on each side of the room – make pairs then divide between the team so everyone has someone in particularly they can “insult”. In turn, ask the pairs/members of the team to step forward and hurl an insult at their partner/the opposing team. They should make an effort to project it as clearly as possible – spit out every syllable and put as much venom into the silly sentiments as they can muster. If the group likes a little competitive motivation, award point for projection & emotion.

Alternately, shyer groups can do all their shouting at once – pair everyone up with a friend then ask them to volley back and forth hurling insults at each other — while the rest of the group is doing the same.

Either way, at the end, make sure everyone gives their partner/the opposing team a bit of love to show that it was just acting and no hard feelings remain – have people shake hands or have a silly group hug or similar!

Group size: any size

Length: no more than 10 minutes

Have you used this game with your class?

  • Did they like it?
  • Did you find it useful?
  • Did you change anything?

We'd love to hear what you think!