Art is an excellent tool for teaching children Spanish. Pictures provide context and support so that kids understand new language. They can also provide an important cultural component when the artists are Spanish speakers. iPad apps let us put beautiful art into the hands of children and talk about what we see.
You can use the pictures in many different ways depending on the age and language level of the kids. Be sure to introduce your child to the words la pintura and el cuadro before you start. Here are a few ideas, and the paintings will surely inspire more.
- Sort paintings according to a theme, like people or animals, and then use the vocabulary your child is learning to talk about what you see in the pictures.
- Talk about the setting – the place, the weather, the season, the time of day.
- Choose a verb, like volar, comer or correr and scroll through paintings finding examples: Vuela el pájaro. El niño come una manzana.
- Scroll through pictures pointing to and naming one thing in each picture. You can make this a game by alternating paintings and making the rule that you cannot repeat words. (You will be surprised how long this can go on using body parts and colors alone.)
- Name something in the picture for your child to find.
- Describe the clothes people are wearing in the pictures.
- Use the pictures to practice prepositions by describing where objects are relative to each other.
- Most of the apps let you organize paintings as favorites. Make a selection and then describe one painting for your child to find.
- Create a story about the picture. ¿Cómo se llama la persona? ¿Por qué está allí? ¿Qué va a pasar?
Free iPad Apps with Art for Speaking Spanish
Remember, these apps are not specifically designed for children. The collections are large and include works you may not want to share with very young kids, for example paintings with violence. It is always a good idea to choose the art you are going to talk about with small children before you begin.
You can sort by featured, top artists, or by artist name. You can bookmark favorite paintings to use with kids. If you select an artist, the first thumbnail is a link to the Wikipedia article on that person. At the end of the articles, there is the option 0f changing the language and reading from Wikipedia en español.
3. Art Gallery: +3000 Artists by Dream Group LTD
- You can browse the gallery or sort by artist.
4. Art cloud apps for individual artists including Picasso, Goya, El Greco by Wei Yao. The paintings are organized by time period. The app includes a biography and fun facts about the artist. You can bookmark favorites.
5. IDB Gallery by Insomniac Design
This is the IDB Cultural Center Virtual Museum from the Inter-American Development Bank.
The Art Collection of the Inter-American Development Bank “embodies a commitment to invest in the Region’s artists and to share traveling exhibitions, in order to promote diversity and cultural integration among nations.”
I love this app because it has works from Latin American artists that you will not find in other places. It is a fabulous cultural resource. You can browse the entire gallery, view 20 Masters from the collection, or view a collection by women artists. You can also search by country. There is information on the artists available with each painting. You cannot bookmark favorites.
6. Best of Van Gogh Free, Best of Monet Free, Best of Cézanne Free, Best of Da Vinci Free, etc. by Nuno Palmeirim
This developer had free apps for many artists. The paintings are organized by time period. You can bookmark favorites.
You may also be interested in this post: Spanish Apps for Kids – Kitu Kids