Today we have a guest post from Jennifer Brunk! She blogs about resources for teaching children Spanish on Spanish Playground, one of my favorite resources for Spanish activities with Chiquita or with our preschool playgroup.Some of the first words kids learn in any language have to do with day, night, sleeping and waking up. If you are teaching your child Spanish, you can add this vocabulary to your play and daily routines to help her learn these common words.
Saying buenos días and buenas noches to your child as you put her to bed and when she wakes up, is the most natural and effective ways to teach the phrases. Here are some other easy ways you can reinforce that vocabulary and teach the words sol (sun), luna (moon) and estrella (star) as you play together:
- Print sun and moon coloring pages and use the words sol and luna in sentences as you color together. You can use simple sentences: Es el sol. El sol sale de día. Voy a colorear el sol de color amarillo. Veo la luna. La luna sale de noche.
- Make a big sun and moon that you can use when you play with toy animals or dolls. Coloring sheets work well if you don’t want to draw them. Pretend it is night by showing the moon and say La luna - es de noche. Buenas noches. Have your toys go to sleep. Next, have the sun come out and say El sol - ¡Buenos días! and have your toys wake up.
- Sing to your toys when you put them to sleep. Dora has a Buenas noches song you can hear on YouTube. The lyrics are:
Buenas noches, buenas noches.
You can also sing to the tune of Are you sleeping? This is one set of simple words that fits the tune:
Buenas noches, buenas noches,
Cierra los ojos, cierra los ojos,
- Scatter a few stars on black construction paper and ask ¿Cuántas estrellas hay?. Then count them together. You can cut out paper stars or buy foam star stickers. Either way, after you have scattered and counted the stars several times, you can glue or stick them to the paper to make a night sky. Add a moon to talk about la luna.
- As you read picture books, point to the sun and moon in illustrations and say the words in Spanish. If there are stars, ask ¿Cuántas estrellas hay? and count in Spanish.
- Make a flip stick with a sun on one side and a moon on the other. Here is a simple pattern you can print and use. Just color the circles and tape one to a craft stick. Then glue the other circle on. Use the flip stick and say buenos días when you see the sun. Flip to the other side and say buenas noches.
Have lots of fun days and nights speaking Spanish with your child!