¡Feliz como un lombriz! That is how we all want our children to feel todo el tiempo. Of course, no one is happy all the time, and it is important for children to learn to understand and express different emotions. This simple craft activity is a sign to hang on a door. A child uses it to show how she is feeling. I call it a midemociones (emotion measure) and it helps children identify and express emotions in Spanish.
This activity can be adapted to different ages and language levels. The instructions below are for a midemociones with four emotions. Older children can make a whole circle and divide it into eight or more sections.
To make a midemociones:
- Trace a semicircle onto light cardboard.
- Cut pie-shaped pieces out of colored construction paper or card stock. You can make a pattern to trace by folding a paper semicircle in half and in half again.
- Write an emotion on each pie-shaped piece.
- Add a drawing or a picture from a magazine to help identify the emotion and clarify the language.
- Glue the colored pie-shaped pieces onto the cardboard.
- Cut a pointer shape out of card stock and attach it to the base with a paper fastener.
Your child should put the language that best helps her communicate on her midemociones. Spanish language learners might include the verb estar or sentirse: Estoy enojada. Estoy contenta. Me siento sola. This activity is also good practice with agreement for children learning Spanish; the adjectives are feminine for niñas and masculine for niños.
These are some of the emotions your child could include:
arrepentido/a – sorry
avergonzado/a – embarrassed
celoso/a – jealous
confundido/a – confused
contento/a – happy
decepcionado/a – disappointed
emocionado/a – excited
enojado/a – angry
estresado/a – stressed
frustrado/a – frustrated
nervioso/a – nervous
preocupado/a – worried
solo/a sentirse – lonely
triste – sad
This simple activity encourages children to use Spanish to talk about their feelings. You can use the words on the midemociones to help your child identify her emotions and to talk about how others are feeling. You can also identify the feelings of characters in books to practice naming emotions. Understanding emotions is an crucial part of child development. As you use these words, your child will not only be developing her Spanish language skills, she will be acquiring the important ability to identify and express her feelings.
Special thanks to Spanish Playground for providing this activity. Visit their site for more ideas for teaching Spanish to kids.