Lately we’ve been writing much about how reading to and with your children is one of the most effective ways to enhance their overall language and cultural skills, but especially about how beneficial it as an activity to promote second language learning in a fun way.
Surely, your child has a book she’s especially fond of and loves to be read over and over (and over) again. She loves to hear how you imitate the sounds of the animals, how you sing the voices of certain characters, she gleefully points to the objects she wants to hear you name for the umpteenth time. Now, imagine that same story magically brought to life, full of vibrant colors and sounds, to be watched on a screen.
That’s exactly what Moving Picture Books has done with over 30 classic children’s tales and new favorites.
I found their site on-line some months ago while surfing for quality bilingual videos to bring to you (yep, that’s loads of homework we do around here!) Their slogan-”Magically bringing storybooks to life!”- instantly grabbed me since it married two of my passions: books + movies. Around this house, we read a lot and watch a lot, en español.
What prompted me to contact the company was that they offer the visual storybooks in English and Spanish! BIG kudos to them for including the Spanish option from the get-go. So, I gladly accepted the DVD they eagerly sent me to review.
Each DVD comes with three animated storybooks recommended for ages 3mos-7yrs. I was impressed by the quality and ease of navigation of the main menu. You can easily choose to view the videos in either English, Spanish or read-along-text (English only). Guess what option I chose first?
The Spanish translations are impeccable and the voices are professionally narrated by children and adult storytellers. My daughter, Camila, has a fascination for babies and kids and just loves hearing children’s voices. She completely identifies and I prefer those voices to be in Spanish.
Visually, Moving Picture Books remains faithful to the illustrators and just “magically” gives life to the artwork using vibrant colors and dynamic animations. This is definitely quality educational material for our bilingual kids!
How to Use Animated Storybooks in your Bilingual Home
How I see you using these animated storybooks at home? As an imagination-filled compliment to your reading out-loud story time.
Let’s say you have Margaret Wang’s “The Right Shoes for Me” book at home. You can set a time to read it with your child, have fun acting out the scenes, barking like a dog, and watching him learn to tie his shoes. Then you ask him if he wants to see the boy and his dog come to life on a screen, hear how the dog really barks and see how the boy tie his shoes. You either download the video from the Moving Picture Books library (.99 to $1.99 each), get the Apple app, or pop in a DVD (you’ll be able to win some here at the end of this post!) and, voilà, like magia the story you just read together is brought to life in Spanish.
If your family uses the OPOL method, then each parent has the option of playing it in their language. If your child is learning to read in English, reinforce the process by choosing the read-along-text option. I’m a little obsessed with options, can you tell?!
I do want to point out that the new DVD sets for sale on their site do not include the Spanish language track. It seems odd because they sent me six DVDs to give away that are part of their first set which do include the Spanish option. These videos are so unique that I wished they would continue creating them in Spanish as well, especially since the full Spanish library is available to download on their site.
On Top of Spaghetti
Here’s the animated storybook of the classic “On Top of Spaghetti” in Spanish that the parents behind Moving Picture Books uploaded to YouTube so that SpanglishBaby friends can enjoy and share. Scroll down past the video for your chance to win a collection of six DVDs!!
Win a Set of Six Spanish Language DVDs from Moving Picture Books
This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to our winner CARRIE_in_TN!! Thanks to all who entered.
One person will win the complete set of six DVDs with the Spanish language track option. These are no longer available for sale! How lucky are we? All you need to do for your chance to win is visit the Moving Picture Books site here and tell us which animated storybook you would like to watch and why.
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This giveaway ends at midnight EST on Thursday August 13, 2009.
Entries/Comments that do not follow the submission guidelines will be invalid and automatically deleted. Sorry, just need to keep it fair. Good luck to all!