Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Tips for Reading to Children in Spanish
Yesterday I read La oruga muy hambrienta to my little class of 6. It was definitely a hit. I was feeling a little apprehensive about reading an entire book in Spanish to my students who had such a limited vocabulary. They are familiar with numbers through 10, colors, days of the week, some emotions, how to say your name along with a few other things. I was nervous that they would feel intimidated by all the vocabulary they didn't know but I couldn't have been more wrong. They loved it. Now mind you it helped that I hammed it up as much as I could and did actions where appropriate. I have read to my kids in Spanish since they were born but I did not how the other 4 kids would handle it. It was a success. After this experience I have some tips for reading to children in Spanish.
1. Make sure they know SOME of the words already. They don't need to know all the words, just a few here and there scattered throughout the book.
2. Do actions when ever you can. For example, if someone is eating in the book, mime eating.
3. Ask a few questions throughout the story. Maybe ask about a word they should know. In our case I asked my students about the days of the week every time we came upon one of those words in the story.
4. Consider reading a story that they are already familiar with in Spanish.
5. If you notice that your students are drifting off a little go ahead and omit some of the words or just take a break and save the rest for another day.
6. If there is a repetitive line (like in i Salta, Ranita, salta! ) encourage students to say it with you.
7. Have fun!