Christmas carols in Spanish: Significance and tradition

As the season of Christmas approaches, many will encounter Christmas carols. These singers will demonstrate the traditional form of celebrating that the season is approaching. Carols originated during the XV (15th) and XVII (17th) centuries. These Christmas carols were a poetic form usually found in Spain, Portugal, and Spanish speaking countries. Later, the carols were found in church songs and lyrics, which many were associated with the celebration of Christmas.

Continue reading Christmas carols in Spanish: Significance and tradition

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Spanish nursery rhymes: Learning basic numbers and sequence

Counting with those tiny little fingers can be one way to educate children about numbers. But, when numbers and nursery rhymes are combined, they make counting a different experience for children.

When learning Spanish numbers and sequence, children can have fun reciting classic nursery rhymes. Whether counting forwards or backwards, it is a great way to teach children the basics of number order.

How can children learn numbers in Spanish in a fun way?

Children playing

Interaction with different materials, textures, and animals can all help children to understand the basis of counting numbers. Children can begin to recognize basic numbers 1 through 5 by using different print patterns or materials with various textures.

But learning to count, whether it is sticks or coins, animals also make great counters. In these classic nursery rhymes, frogs, ducks and elephants make wonderful visuals for children to learn to count in Spanish and English.

These learning activities also present a great way to introduce sequential order, if this has not been covered yet. When children learn to move in a story from one part to another, they can grasp basics of reading comprehension. It allows them to comprehend the story with more than just knowing the words. It provides a sense of narration and understanding that they may not have understood before.

Learning Activity #1:

Using the Five little speckled frogs” nursery rhyme, here is a fun way to teach numbers and sequential order.

  • Print out the Frog sheet.
  • Cut out each pattern.
  • Trace the frog onto construction or tag paper (any heavy duty paper works).
  • Option #1:
  • Trace these patterns onto flannel material.
  • Use them on flannel board or as finger puppets.
  • Option #2:
  • Trace the frog and other patterns onto different materials of various textures such as corduroy, canvas, suede, leather or other fun prints.
  • Paste a small piece of flannel on the back of each pattern.
  • Use them on flannel board.
  • Recite the nursery rhyme.

Learning Activity #2:

In “Los Cinco Patitos” (you can also apply frogs) nursery rhyme:

Five little ducks (frogs) went out one day,

Over the hills and far away.

Mama duck (frog) said, “Quack, quack, quack, quack” (Ribbit, ribbit, ribbit)

But only four little ducks (frogs) came waddling back.

Repeat for four, three, two, and one little duck (frogs).

No little ducks (frogs) went out one day,

Over the hills and far away.

Mama duck (frog)  said, “Quack, quack, quack, quack.” (Ribbit, ribbit, ribbit)

And all five little ducks (frogs) came waddling back.

Cinco patitos fueron un día,

Sobre las colminas muy lejanas.

Mamá pata les dijo: “Quack, quack, quack, quack”

Pero sólo habían cuatro patitos que volvieron.

Repetir con cuatro, tres, dos, y un patito.

In the same way as learning the “Five little speckled frogs”, children can also learn the numbers and sequential order by learning the “Five little ducks”. With this story, they also learn counting backwards.

  • Using the patterns, simply print them out.
  • Trace the mama duck and five little ducklings on heavy-duty paper.
  • Trace the patterns onto flannel material.
  • Use them for a flannel board.
  • Recite the nursery rhyme.

In this learning activity, it would be a good idea for each child to recite the words or have them guess the number that is next in sequence. Also, practice these numbers in English and Spanish.

Learning Activity #3:

“One elephant”

One elephant was balancing

On a spider web

When it saw that it was wobbly

They went to call another elephant.

Repeat for two, three, four, and five elephants.

Un elefante

Un elefante se balanceaba

Sobre la tela de una araña

Cuando veía que resistia

Fueron a llamar a otro elefante

Dos elefantes se balanceaba

Sobre la tela de una araña

Cuando veían que resistia

Fueron a llamar a otro elefante

Tres elefante se balanceaba

Sobre la tela de una araña

Cuando veían que resistia

Fueron a llamar a otro elefante

Cuatro elefante se balanceaba

Sobre la tela de una araña

Cuando veían que resistia

Fueron a llamar a otro elefante

Cinco elefante se balanceaba

Sobre la tela de una araña

Cuando veían que resistia

Fueron a llamar a otro elefante

  • To apply the “Un Elefante” rhyme, simply print out the patterns.
  • Trace five elephants on heavy-duty paper.
  • Trace the elephant pattern on flannel material.
  • Trace the spider web on white flannel material.
  • Make web marking with black marker.
  • Option #2: use cotton as the spider web.

 

7 fun Spanish nursery rhymes and lyrics for preschoolers

Why do children love nursery rhymes and fun lyrics that they can easily remember to sing to? Perhaps, one reason is that they are fun to memorize. But one of the main reasons is that it is fun to say silly rhymes. Many of the nursery rhymes have silly saying and stories. And these fun rhymes are what motivate children to read and learn word patterns.

In fact, many of these rhymes and lyrics are performed with fun music, instruments, finger puppets and flannel boards. No matter how the rhymes and lyrics are presented, what matters are the reading skills that children can learn from them. And it’s fun to learn them in English and Spanish.

Here, seven very simple, fun rhymes and lyrics are compiled. Practice these in various ways to encourage children to keep on reading and learning.

Related: Free Spanish Nursery Rhymes Workbook

Five little speckled frogs

Five little speckled frogs

sat on a speckled log

eating the most delicious bugs. Yum, yum!

One jumped into the pool

where it was nice and cool

Now there are four speckled frogs.

Four little speckled frogs

sat on a speckled log

eating the most delicious bugs. Yum, yum!

One jumped into the pool

where it was nice and cool

Now there are three speckled frogs.

Three little speckled frogs

sat on a speckled log

eating the most delicious bugs. Yum, yum!

One jumped into the pool

where it was nice and cool

Now there are two speckled frogs.

Two little speckled frogs

sat on a speckled log

eating the most delicious bugs. Yum, yum!

One jumped into the pool

where it was nice and cool

Now there is one speckled frog.

One little speckled frog

sat on a speckled log

eating the most delicious bugs. Yum, yum!

One jumped into the pool

where it was nice and cool

Now there are no more speckled frogs.

iStockphoto

(En Español)

Cinco pequeñas ranitas con lunares

Cinco pequeñas ranitas con lunares

sentadas en un tronco de lunares

comiendo los más deliciosos bichitos. Yum, yum!

Uno saltó al agua

donde estaba lindo y refrescante

Ahora sólo hay cuatro ranitas con lunares.

Cuatro pequeñas ranitas con lunares. [Repetir los versos 2-5]

Ahora sólo hay tres ranitas con lunares.

Tres pequeñas ranitas con lunares. [Repetir los versos 2-5]

Ahora sólo hay dos ranitas con lunares.

Dos pequeñas ranitas con lunares. [Repetir los versos 2-5]

Ahora sólo hay una ranita con lunares.

Una pequeña ranita con lunares.

sentada en un tronco de lunares

comiendo los más deliciosos bichitos. Yum, yum!

Uno saltó al agua

donde estaba lindo y refrescante

Ahora no hay más ranitas con lunares.

Related: Bilingual Writing Practice

Humpty Dumpty

Humpty, Dumpty sat on a wall

Humpty, Dumpty had a great fall.

All the king’s horses and all the king’s men

Couldn’t put Humpty together again!

(En Español)

Humpty Dumpty sentado en una pared

Humpty Dumpty tuvo una gran caída

Ninguno de los caballos del rey ni los caballeros

Pudieron poner a Humpty junto de nuevo

 

Little Miss Muffet

Little Miss Muffet

sat on a tuffet

eating her curds and whey.

Along came a spider

who sat down beside her

and frightened

Miss Muffet away

(En Español)

Pequeña Señorita Muffet

sentada en un reposapiés

comiendo su merienda de crema.

Vino una araña

que se sentó al lado de ella

y asustó a

la Señorita Muffet

iStockphoto

Hickory Dickory Dock

Hickory, dickory dock

The mouse ran up the clock.

The clock struck one.

The mouse ran down.

Hickory dickory dock

(En Español)

Hickory, dickory se quedó

El ratón al reloj se subió.

El reloj marcó la hora.

El ratón del reloj bajó.

Hickory, dickory se quedó

 

Jack and Jill

Jack and Jill

went up the hill

to fetch a pail of water.

Jack fell down

and broke his crown

and Jill came tumbling after.

(En Español)

Juan y Juanita

fueron hacia la colina

para buscar un balde de agua.

Juan se cayó

y se lastimó su cabecita

y Juanita se revolcó detrás de él.

 

There was an old woman

There was an old woman who lived in a shoe.

She had so many children she didn’t know what to do.

She gave them some broth without any bread.

She kissed them all gently and sent them to bed.

(En Español)

Había una viejecita que vivía en un zapato.

Ella tenía tantos niños que no sabía que hacer.

Ella les dió un poco de caldo sin pan.

Ella los besó tiernamente y los mandó a la cama.

artist unknown

Hey, Diddle, Diddle

Hey, diddle, diddle

The cat and the fiddle.

The cow jumped over the moon.

The little dog laughed

to see such a sport.

And the dish ran away with the spoon.

(En Español)

Oye, Diddle, Diddle

El gato y su violín.

La vaca salta la luna.

El perrito se ríe

al ver tal evento.

Y el plato se escapa con la cuchara.

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