Parents are realizing more every day the importance of raising their children bilingual, as many of them lose the ability to speak and read in Spanish while growing up in England.Therefore there is the need of seizing every possible moment to practice and encourage them speaking the Spanish language.
This is especially challenging for those parents who work full-time and have a very limited number of hours most days to share their language with their children.
When we’re at home, we can take advantage of games, books, toys, videos, and the simple fact that we’re engaging in face-to-face interactions with them.
But what about those endless hours in the car, driving from one playgroup to another one, running errand upon errand?
The parent is driving, facing forward, no eye contact, hands occupied–not ideal conditions for practicing another language with small (or bigger) children.
So let’s brainstorm as many as possible ways to engage our kids while we’re on the go!
Here, I’ll start:
Music : Listen to songs in Spanish–children’s music, yes, but also pop music, rap music, folk songs, music from all the countries where Spanish is spoken. Sing songs to (or with) your children. And don’t forget the nursery rhymes!
Rhyme time: You say a word in Spanish and your kids reply with words that rhyme. Then let them pick the words to start with. For example: Amarillo – Cuchillo / Noche – Coche, etc.
Counting: Count together, then count solo and pause for the kids to fill in the next number,etc (whatever the children are capable of); count objects that you pass (stop signs, trees, blue cars).
Guessing Game: Play this vocabulary-rich game that involves guessing what object someone is thinking of, where the guessers can only ask yes/no questions. A child who can’t form complete sentences (much less questions) can still show his understanding of your questions by answering them while you guess!
I Spy: Another fun and easy game that involves sighting an object (inside or outside the car) and giving clues so that the others can guess the object.
Now it’s your turn….
what do you do to keep your kids
practicing Spanish while on the go?