Spanish games and apps for children learning language.

spanish stories for kids lucas lg

Kids Yoga Stories weave yoga poses into the narrative. These stories are available in English and Spanish, and the Spanish book Lucas en un Día en la Playa is a fun way to introduce children to the animals of Australia as they learn lots of beach-related vocabulary. It is available from Kids Yoga Stories and on Amazon.

Lucas en un Día en la Playa is the story of a class trip to the beach. As the students in the story comment on what they see, Spanish language learners can identify what they are talking about in the illustrations. In addition, as they listen to the story, they do the yoga poses that represent the language they hear. See the sequence in the book and descriptions of the poses here.

Practicing yoga and learning Spanish complement each other in many ways. Read more about yoga and language learning and how they naturally fit together. Doing the yoga poses is the most obvious language activity to do with Lucas en un Día en la Playa. Here are a few other activities to reinforce the language in the book.

Spanish Language Activities for Lucas en un Día en la Playa

Identify words from the text in the illustrations.
You can point to pictures in the story to help kids learn vocabulary. As you read Lucas en un día en la playa use complete sentences with verbs like veo and hay: Veo el sol. Hay muchas gaviotas. If the vocabulary is new, just point to the words as you say the sentences. When your child knows the words, you can ask ¿Dónde está..?, ¿Ves…? and ¿Puedes encontrar…?

These common words are used in the text and also appear in the illustrations.
la camiseta – t-shirt
el sombrero – hat
las gafas de sol – sunglasses
el cielo – sky
el sol – sun
la sombrilla – umbrella
el mar – sea
la arena – sand
el canguro – kangaroo
los niños – children
la gaviota – seagull
la caja – box
el bote de basura – garbage can
el castillo de arena – sand castle
el delfín – dolphin
el cangrejo – crab
la caracol – shell
la botella de plástico – plastic bottle

Use the illustrations to reinforce and expand vocabulary by pointing out items not mentioned in the story.
You can point to illustrations in the story to help kids learn vocabulary even if the words are not in the text. Point to items in the pictures using complete sentences with verbs like veo and hay: Veo una pelota. Hay una silla. If the vocabulary is new, just point to the words as you say the sentences. When your child knows the words, you can ask ¿Dónde está..?, ¿Ves…? and ¿Puedes encontrar…?

These common items appear in the illustrations, although they are not mentioned in the text.
el pájaro – bird
la bandera – flag
las rocas – rocks
la pelota – ball
el cubo/ la cubeta – pail
el árbol – tree
las plantas – plants
la mariposa – butterfly
la silla – chair
la cometa / el papalote – kite

Practice ¿Cuántos hay? and counting with the illustrations.
In many of the illustrations there are several birds, butterflies, children, or dolphins. Ask children ¿Cuántos pájaros hay? or ¿Cuántas mariposas hay? and count together.

Play ¿Dónde está el cangrejo? to practice prepositions and vocabulary.
There is a crab in each of the illustrations. In some illustrations there are several crabs and they are not hiding, but in many there is one and he is peeking out from behind something. Play ¿Dónde está el cangrejo? by finding the crab in the pictures and then describing where he is: El cangrejo está detrás de las rocas. El cangrejo está detrás de la maestra. El cangrejo está en el agua.

Extend this game beyond the book by hiding a paper crab and taking turns searching for it. You can keep it simple by using a crab template like this one from First Palette or make one of the many really cute crab crafts online. I like the ones made with paper plates, like this one from No Time for Flash Cards.  Remember to ask ¿Dónde está el cangrejo? as you or your child looks for the crab. When you find it, describe where is it: ¡Está debajo de la mesa!

Reinforce body parts and verbs as you read and with a listening game.
There are several phrases in the book that combine verbs and body parts as a part of the narration. A few of these are part of the yoga poses, but not all of them. As you read these lines to your child, model the action, pointing out the body part as you do.
…estiraron sus brazos bien alto hacia el cielo
…secándose la frente
…tapándose la nariz
…agitó sus brazos como una nadadora
…cerró los ojos
…haciendo el sonido de las olas en su garganta
…sacudieron la cabeza
…hundir su dedo en una anémona de mar

When your child is familiar with the story, play a listening game with these verbs and body parts. Give instructions and act out them out together. You can put them on cards and take turns drawing. Use the infinitive of the verbs:
estirar los brazos
secarse la frente
taparse la nariz
agitar los brazos
cerrar los ojos
hacer el sonido de las olas en la garganta
sacudir la cabeza
hundir el dedo

Spanish Kids Yoga

Spanish Stories about Australia
Visit Kids Yoga Stories for yoga sequences for other stories about Australia in Spanish. The books are available in English as well.
Join us next month for Spanish, kids yoga and farm stories.
Check out our schedule for the year:
2013-2014 Spanish and Kids Yoga Monthly Book Themes
August: Bill Martin Jr.
September: Latin America
October: Bedtime
November: Australia
December: Farm
January: Africa
February: Zoo
March: World
April: Ocean
May: Asia

Disclosure: The company sent me a copy of  Lucas en un día en la playa to be able to write the article. I may have been compensated for my time. All of the ideas and opinions are my own.


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