Archive for the ‘Teaching Children Spanish’ Category

Fun New Album for Little Language Learners

Sunday, June 12th, 2016

Arriba-Abajo-HI-RES-123-Andres-Square-cover-art-

I am very excited to share a new video by  123 Andrés! Cosquillas is a fun, upbeat song from 123 Andrés’s new album Arriba Abajo.  This song has a fun, upbeat, cumbia rhythm and style, with great vocals and clear singing. Perfect for kids learning Spanish, and it is on sale right now at Amazon, iTunes, and Bandcamp.

123 Andrés is a Latin Grammy nominated artist and entertainer.  His music is an interactive celebration of Latin culture for kids and families.  the range of rhythms and musical styles on his new album Arriba Abajo will inspire movement and motor skills as well!  Exactly what I use to teach our little ones Spanish! I love the interactive nature of the songs and awesome beats and vocals!  As a bilingual educator, these songs are exactly what I am looking for when adding interactive lessons to my classes.  His songs focus on educational themes, but with fun rhythms and lyrics.  I can see why Billboard magazine has hailed him ” A rockstar for little language learners”.  It is definitely a great combination to make language learning fun for kids!

123 Andrés presents live concerts for children and families, and facilitates professional development seminars for educators, library professionals, and cultural arts institutions.  He has some great concerts planned for the summer, so be sure to visit www.123andres.com for the latest details, and maybe you can catch him live!

Be sure to Like 123 Andrés on Facebook!  I would highly recommend adding Arriba Abajo to your music collection , as it is a bilingual learning treasure!  I received a copy to review and I could not be more impressed!

Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with Hot New Music!

Sunday, September 27th, 2015

Hot New Bilingual and Spanish Music for Kids!

 

I have always been a huge proponent of incorporating music into the Bilingual Fun language learning experience. Singing and listening to music is a great way to absorb and retain the language. So, I am always on the lookout for fun, new music to engage my students and for my own enjoyment!   Guess what? I am so excited to share these new albums with you and I have 3 CDs to giveaway for FREE! 3 lucky winners will each receive 1 CD ( chosen randomly). These will be great additions to your music library and your kids will LOVE them! To win, please visit each of their sites and check them out. Let me know what you think on the Bilingual Fun Facebook comments and I will choose 3 winners by October 4, 2015.

 

¡Come Bien! Eat Right! By Jose Luis OrozcoCome bien

Music, composer and editor Jose Luis Orozco is one of my favorites! I absolutely love his new album ¡Come Bien! Eat Right! This is his sixteenth, and first through Smithsonian Folkways, which is a delightful and engaging bilingual album that offers a fun- filled approach to health eating. I love Orozco’s music, because they are wonderful teaching songs, easy to sing, great for pronunciation and listening comprehension, and always fun and catchy to listen to! The kids love them too! On his new album, Orozco teamed up with friend and Mexican-American music icon the Grammy winning Quetzal Flores. I am looking forward to incorporating these songs into our Spanish classes this fall!

 

ADELANTE by Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band

Lucky Diaz

Wow! This collection of bilingual songs for all ages by Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band will get you up dancing and singing in no time! The Latin Grammy Award winning family band has incredible songs on this new collection. I absolutely love the “Taco Song” and “Guacamole Boy” with their fun, refreshing rhythms, style, and lyrics! The songs have easy alternations between English and Spanish, and are broadly educational, as well as super fun to dance to. I love teaching with movement and music, and ADELANTE is quickly becoming a class favorite with my students of all ages!

 

PUT OUR HEADS TOGETHER by Hot Peas and Butter

Hot Peas

Hot Peas and Butter, s NYC based multicultural family music band, is known for their Latin-influenced, catchy songs for kids.   Put Our Heads Together is the 7th studio album from this impressive band. They come together with Dan Zanes for the single Amistad, which is a fun, bilingual song about friends. Colores is another fantastic song on this album and a great addition for kids learning and practicing color vocabulary. I love the sound and rhythms on this album, as Hot Peas and Butter use a range of hip-hop, world pop, reggeaton, and dance hall to create catchy rhythms for kids and their parents to share together. I was thrilled to be introduced to Hot Peas and Butter, and my students were too!

 

This giveaway is in no way sponsored by Facebook. I received free samples of all albums for my personal review, and all opinions are my own.

Teaching the Spanish Alphabet- El Alfabeto

Monday, June 1st, 2015

el alfabeto

 

Just as it is important to learn the alphabet in your first language, teaching and learning the Spanish alphabet is very important for children’s bilingual development.   Consonant and vowel sounds are so important to learn when children are being exposed to Spanish.  Grammar, pronunciation, and fluency are taught and practiced through interactive lessons in our Bilingual Fun classes, but we also feel it is so important to incorporate alphabet activities to help kids connect letter sounds and fluency. Of course, the lessons need to be fun, upbeat, and interactive in order to capture the kids attention and make the learning worthwhile!   Some simple and fun ABC activities that we use to teach Spanish to kids are:

1.  Beach Ball letters:  simply write letters all over the beach ball.  Games can include simple letter recognition to a variety of spelling games.  The ball is tossed around in a circle, as the teacher calls out letters or words.  We also use the ball to play ” Papa Caliente”.

2. Loteria:  Letter Bingo is a great way to reinforce letter sounds, listening comprehension, and pronunciation as they must say the letters aloud as they look for them and if they win.

3. Letter Mats:  You can use pre-made letter cards, or simply make large letters cards and laminate.  Place mats all over the floor and do a variety of kinesthetic activities: freeze dance ( name the letter they are standing on), give actions and kids must jump, march, skip, clap, dance around the letters.  Play 4 Corners  ( this is a favorite!), change the letters in the corners so kids get a variety of letter reviews. Mix up mats and time the students as they put the letters in ABC order.  Place letter mats on floor in a mixed up order, and play “Matamoscas” using the fly swatters.

4.  Sing!:   You can sing a variety of Spanish alphabet songs and this is a great way to practice pronunciation and fluency.  Some of our favorites are:  ABC March by Barbara MacArthur,  El Alfabeto by Ms. Lily,  5 Vocales  by Jose Luis Orozco

 

 

Bilingual eBook Series for Kids!

Wednesday, April 29th, 2015

Spanish Missy

I always love finding great resources for teaching Spanish to children, therefore I was very excited to have the chance to read some of the new bilingual stories from Spanish Missy!

 

Spanish Missy is a fun eBook series designed to teach your kids language the natural way. Currently Spanish Missy has 4 published bilingual books available as an e-series. (C-Colors; D- Days of the week; N- Numbers; V- Veggies). These are in English/Spanish and allow a child that is learning English or Spanish as a second language to be exposed to the language. These books have cute illustrations and storylines, in a bilingual format, along with interactive questions to help reinforce the learning!

 

These would be a great asset for families and teachers that are helping their children to learn Spanish or English as a second language! Go over and visit Spanish Missy’s website and sign up to receive a FREE copy of an eBook for your family!

Simple, Quick Valentine Activities for Spanish Class

Thursday, February 12th, 2015

Valentine’s Day is a great holiday for practicing Spanish vocabulary and encouraging communication.  Here are 3 very simple ( hardly any prep), quick Valentine activities to use with children learning Spanish.  They can easily be modified for different ages and ability levels.

¡ Feliz Día de San Valentín!

1.  Hunt for Los Corazones

Simply cut out hearts in different sizes and colors ( paper or felt) and hide them around the room.  Give kids clues or a time limit to find todos los  corazones. photo 1 (12)Bring them together as a group and sort by color and size.  Illicit conversation by asking

¿Cúantos tienes en total?   ¿Cúantos corazones son grandes, medianos, pequeños?, etc.

 

2.  Loteria- Bingo

Give children blank bingo sheets and have them fill in all of the squares with los corazones de colores diferentes.  Use candy hearts as the coverings and call out colors.  When a child gets a bingo, encourage kids to communicate using phrases such as ‘ yo tengo un corazón rojo, un corazón verde, etc”.  With older students, you can have them also fill numbers in the hearts and give math problems the questions ” Cinco por nueve son ?”.heart3

3.   Una Estimación- How many hearts will fit?

Draw a large heart and have small candy hearts on hand ( heart stickers or small pom poms work well too).   Ask children to estimate how many hearts it will take to fill up el corazón.  Kids really enjoy guessing the numbers and then count as a group as the heart is filled.  This is a great practice for larger numbers diez- cien.

heart2

Teaching Kids Spanish with Cultural Fun

Sunday, February 1st, 2015

During this session of Bilingual Fun,  the students are having fun ‘ traveling’ to a variety of Spanish speaking countries.  This theme gives lots of opportunity for realistic learning and the kids are able to use their vocabulary in context with many different activities.

We had a great time traveling to Guatemala and learning about los mercados y el arte de tejer.   The kids created their own ‘tapete’ using colored felt and lots of Spanish conversation was practiced reinforcing colors, counting, sizes, etc.   Here are some pics of our hands on Spanish fun!

 

guat photo 2 (12)

What a great year for Bilingual Fun- 2014!

Sunday, December 28th, 2014

We are so blessed at Bilingual Fun to interact daily with fabulous families, students, and schools who share our passion for second language learning!   Here is a quick glimpse of the fun we had teaching Spanish to children this year!

Bilingual Fun Spanish for Children

We look forward to 2015 and another great year full of fun with as kids learn Spanish through music, movement, games, and interactive lessons!

“Being Bilingual Means a Brighter Future!”

Gracias a todos nuestros alumnos y familias por ser parte de Bilingual Fun  🙂

Teaching La Casa y La Familia- Spanish for Children

Saturday, November 22nd, 2014

 

photo 4 (2) photo 1 (8) photo 2 (9) photo 3 (7)

Our Bilingual Fun lessons are structured on thematic topics, and this Fall the kids spent several weeks learning and practicing words and conversation associated with Family and House.  This is always a fun theme, as there are so many activities and lessons that promote natural learning in Spanish.  The kids always have a blast with toy houses!  It is a great listening/ comprehension activity and vocabulary identification.  It is easily adaptable for all ages and kids age preschool- 5th grade have fun with the interactive lesson!   The older kids think it is very funny to create ‘ una casa loca” with furniature  and family members in strange places.    As long as they are able to explain and identify the words, it is a fun, creative way to use their Spanish language skills.  They love putting the bathtub en la cocina,  or the doghouse en la sala,etc.   We also used play ” Veo, Veo with  a small object, by hiding it the house and kids have to locate it using Spanish vocabulary.

Here are some fun, interactive, and easy activities we use to supplement the Casa/ Familia lessons with our Bilingual Fun kids:

  • Movement and music-  Four Corners is a top requested game with our elementary kids.  We place 4 visuals from our vocabulary in 4 corners of the room ( la abuela, el primo, el hermano, la tia).  Music is played and kids dance, jump, hop, march, etc.  The music stops and they must all quickly go to any corner they choose.  A visual or vocabulary word is chosen ( ex:  el primo), and all kids at that corner must sit down.  The game continues until there is a winner ( or several kids left standing). Very fun activity because the kids are active and moving, paying attention to commands, and reinforcing the Spanish thematic concepts.
  • House Murals:   using large butcher paper  (or cheap white wrapping paper),  the classes created house murals.  The younger kids did free drawing and  Spanish house vocabulary was reinforced as they drew, while some of the older students had to follow specific commands as they drew their ‘casitas”. Ejemplo:  dibuja 3 ventanas, 1 puerta verde, una chimenea muy alta, etc.
  • Family Charts:  with all classes, lots of conversation was practiced and reinforced using “Familia’ visuals so that kids could make connections with their own families.  We kept track of answers on a white board, so kids could see the info and use it for conversation.  Kids were asked ” ¿Cómo se llama tú tio?,¿Dónde viven tus abuelos?
  • Libros/Stories:  some of the classic favorites were read and re-inacted in class, such as Ricitos de Oro y Los 3 Oro, y La Casa  Adormecida. These are familiar stories and kids can easily follow along in Spanish.
  • Baby Pictures/Las fotos:    the kids bring in baby pictures of themselves and we have to guess ¿Quién es? ..  The kids love this one and lots of conversation naturally occurs with this activity.

The Casa/ Familia unit is always a great unit to do as we transition to Thanksgiving, as many students will be connecting with family over the holiday and words and phrases can naturally be reinforced before and after the holiday!

 

 

Easy Halloween Spanish Songs for Kids

Monday, October 27th, 2014

 

photo (21)

 

 

An easy Spanish class activity to incorporate some Halloween vocabulary and practice pronunciation and fluency is to use familiar songs!  Singing to the tune of 10 Deditos or 10 Little Idians, it is simple to modify and add Spanish vocabulary.  We add sounds and movement, so that children can make the song interactive.

 

Introduce the vocabulary with visuals so that all kids can identify the Spanish word and the object.  Teach the kids the tune and counting rhythm.  At the end of the song, make a funny sound that is associated with the Halloween word.  Kids love this part and they even come up with their own versions!  Fantasmas- ooooooh!  Bruja-  hehehehe!  Gato negro- meow! Dulces- yum, yum, yum!

 

10 Fantasmas

1, 2,3 fantasmas

4, 5, 6 fantasmas

7,8, 9 fantasmas

10 fantasmas

Booooooo!

 

10 Brujas

1, 2, 3, brujas

4, 5, 6 brujas

7, 8, 9 brujas

10 brujas

He he he he he ( witches laugh)

 

10 Dulces

1, 2, 3, dulces

4, 5, 6, dulces

7,8,9 dulces

10 dulces

Yum yum yum!

 

10 Gatos Negros

1, 2, 3, gatos negros

4, 5, 6, gatos negros

7, 8, 9, gatos negros

10 gatos negros

Meow!

Simple Spanish Activities = Lots of Conversation Practice

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

Sometimes the best teaching and learning activities are the simple ones.  As a teacher, I feel like I am always planning, creating, organizing, and preparing activities and lessons that my students will like and that are effective and engaging for their Spanish language development.  I love when simple activities turn into great conversations, and allow kids to naturally practice communicative skills and learn Spanish while having fun!  Here are some examples of very simple activities that can be used for conversation builders.

1. Simple coloring activities in Spanish:  when practicing colors, I lay out crayons throughout the circle and when kids need a certain color, they have to look for it and ask their friends if they can borrow a color.  The kids really get into using their vocabulary and practicing the question and answers.  Example:  ¿Puedo usar el rojo? ¿Tienes el color morado? No lo tengo.  Si.  Gracias. De nada. etc.   These are words and phrases that they are confident with, so the communication is a great way to practice fluency.

coloring2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.  Number recognition and counting in Spanish:   an activity as simple as allowing a child to use a pointer and count 1- 20 is a great way to illicit speaking practice.  I have my other students give the counter several commands such as ” busca cinco, or busca veinte, or cuenta hasta 8″.  Both students are having a chance to speak and communicate.  Kids loving taking turns and giving their friends commands to follow.  With older students, we take turn giving math equations out loud and the counter has to find the answer, ” cinco por tres,  veinte menos ocho, etc.”

photo (21)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Play I Spy in Spanish, Veo Veo:  kids love to play I Spy and it is such a simple activity that can be modified in so many different ways.  We simply play it using colors and kids have to spy things around the room.  But another variation is to allow children to look through books and pick a central theme.  For example, using Dora books, we try to find family members, friends, or specific items.  When the child finds it, more conversation is sure follow:  ‘¿ qué hace Dora? ¿por qué está corriendo Boots?  ¿de qué color es la mochila? Etc.

veo veo

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