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Poetry for kids: 3 literary Spanish poems to learn to rhyme

When it comes to learning new vocabulary, there’s no better way or more fun than a rhyming poem. In these literary genres, not only do children get to appreciate a rhyme and a story, but they also get lyrics to a song.

When reading poems, children might either clap their hands to the syllable formation in the poem or they can use an instrument to follow along. Good sources of instruments are tambourines, xylophones, and a piano.

Here are some excellent examples of literary Spanish poems for children:

1.  El Chivito Marinero by Margarita Montalvo

“El chivito marinero
… fue a la mar
pero no … contento
sin … pastar

Allí no había nada verde
ni … saltar;
agua a … costados, 
agua … inmensidad.

Un día allí …
tomando un baño de sol
vio … cocinero
con … una col.

Da salto en salto
… al cocinero siguió
y en un rincón …
muchas …descubrió” 

Aquel hombre allí tenía, 
sembradas …, 
… todas clases
para … buen sabor. 

Ahora el chivo es cocinero, 
… chef …vapor
y cuida …
sonriente y …amor. 

The poem beautifully tells the story of a little goat trying to find his way in a lost sea. Notice in the second verse that he is so lost that he sees water all around him but no food or land in sight.

But then, he sees a cook (cocinero) with some food and herbs (hierbas). Can you identify the rhyming pattern with the clues that are presented?

For example, the words mar rhyme with pastar and saltar. Other words are sol-col, siguio-descubrio, and sabor-vapor-amor.

literary Spanish poems

Another excellent example of rhyming and learning new words is nursery rhymes and sayings. Here is a great example of other literary Spanish poems:

2.  Doña Araña by Alma Flor Ada and F. Isabel Campoy

“Doña Araña … a pasear
hizo … y se … trepar, 
vino … y la hizo bailar, 
… la tormenta y … bajar.”

Take a moment to examine the last words in each line and try to see if you can find words that can rhyme in the poem. Again think of words that end in -ar.

3.  “Para curar el dolor de un golpe” by Alma Flor Ada and F. Isabel Campoy

“Cura, sana,
… rana, 
dame … besito 
y vete … cama.”

In this very traditional poem, keep in mind the green amphibian rana rhymes with sana.

Poems for children can be a delightful way to learn rhyming and syllables. It can help children to identify particular Spanish vowel blending, pronunciation, and phoneme awareness. These skills are essential for learning any language.

Barbara Mascareno

Barbara is an educational writer, teacher, and instructional designer. She loves to write K-12 education content, teaching strategies, bilingual education approaches, and foreign language.

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