After listening to a podcast of The Parent’s Journal with Bobbie Conner and her guest Tracey Wood (July 16, 2012), a children’s reading specialist, I realized I needed to stop dragging my pies and begin to investigate how to implicitly teach Sofía to read. Yes, she’s only three-years-old, but really the reading process begins at birth (if not before) by constantly reading, rhyming, singing, reading, reading, and reading to our bebés.
There are also many studies that indicated that children, who learn to read and have strong literacy skills in their first language, will have success as they learn to read in their second language. So as I began fostering my toddler, oops—preschooler (as of last week), in the amazing world of reading, it would be in español of course.
Even though I’m an educator, I don’t pretend to know how to teach Sofía to read or even begin with developing pre-reading skills, but with the help of my knack for research, I was able to compile and create some activities to do my part at home. Here are the resources I have to share!
I made Abecedario Cards en español for Sofía and me to read during breakfast. This is especially helpful to me before my morning café has kicked in! You are welcome to print, laminate and cut the flashcards for your personal use!
Interactive Abecedario Slide Show Game
Expanding on the flash card idea, I created a simple Interactive Slideshow Game of the Spanish Abecedario so that Sofía could at least actively participate while answering questions about letter sounds and the abecedario. This allows her to press buttons on the computadora, making letters and pictures appear. The Slideshow Game is monolingual español and does not include inglés. Again, you are welcome to download it for your personal fun!
My Etsy store, Dos Manos Fun, sells a Bilingual Abecedario Letter and Sound Recognition Mat Game that I created. Since the store is on vacation for a while, you can access the mat’s direcciones here. Feel free to print out and laminate the game mats for your personal use. Note that you will also need a complete set of abecedario letters (wooden, foam, or plastic, etc…) in order to play the game.
Español Alphabet Pocket Chart
There was one resource that I didn’t make myself because I really didn’t have the time or energy to do it! So I invested $29.00 and purchased an Español Alphabet Pocket Chart made by Learning Resources. We love it! The quality is excelente and the possibilities for varied activities are superb! If you are interested in purchasing your own Español Alphabet Pocket Chart, you can visit SpanglishBaby’s™ La Tiendita through Amazon.
Resources from La Tiendita
For those of you with children just starting school, there are also three other useful tools available made by Learning Resources. The syllable and blends pocket charts and the syllable big book seem promising for teaching beginning readers in español and are available through our SpanglishBaby™ La Tiendita!
YouTube Video Clips
A simple search on YouTube can also be beneficial in one’s plight to promoting reading in our niños. One of my favoritos is El Jardín de Clarlilú: AEIOU from Disney junior.
Sight Words en Español
Tracey Wood recommended teaching our children sight words. Although she was talking about in inglés, the same concept can of course be applied in Spanish also. Scholastic makes a variety of resources such as a workbook to teach sight words en español and mini-books with sight words. I downloaded them for the whopping price of 99¢ each! Just another reason that Scholastic Rocks!
Although I’m not a Reading Specialist, I do feel comfortable engaging in research-based activities at home that will assist Sofía in developing good reading skills-and I hope my list will continue to grow as I explore más! If you have any questions or have ideas of your own to add about how you strengthen reading with yourSpanglish Baby at home, please share them with all of us!