SCHOOL AGE PROGRAM
¡Hola mis amigos! This week we took a trip to México during our library program for school-aged children.
INTRODUCTION – Our program began with a short introduction to México. We asked the children:
- to find Mexico on a big world map
- what language they speak in Mexico
- if they knew any words in Spanish
The Spanish teacher at our local high school had some masks and statues to show, as well as piñatas, maracas, sombreros, and clothing.
READ: Non-Fiction Books
This is a great point in the program to pull out the non-fiction books in your collection and read excerpts while showing pictures. Books we browsed:
READ – Oh No, Gotta Go! by Susan Middleton Elya
A book mostly written in English, but sprinkled with words in Spanish. The book starts, “We were out driving, down the camino. Papá and Mamá were dressed muy fino.” Have children guess what the words in Spanish mean by using the context of the story and pictures.
VIDEO – About Mexico/Dances
We showed a few minutes of a DVD showing traditional Latin dances, but any type of informative video would work here. Again, we borrowed ours from our local Spanish teacher and I don’t remember the name of it.
DANCE – The Mexican Hat Dance
MP3 download: by The Hit Crew from the album Cinco De Mayo Party Music
To begin: We had children form two lines facing eachother.
For the first part of the song: Place hands on hips and put right foot out in front of you, touching your heel to the ground. Then switch feet, touching left heel to ground in front of you. Clap! Clap! (Keep repeating these actions until the music changes.)
For the second part of the song: The person standing across from you in line is your partner. Link arms and skip in circle, changing directions once. We found that girls and boys most definitely did not want to link arms. Instead, we had the two lines switch places (practice this first so that no one runs into eachother and bumps heads!)
READ – If I Had a Dragon/ Si Yo Tuviera un Dragón by Amanda Ellery
This book is written both in English and Spanish. (This is a great time to promote your bilingual collection!) I read it through in Spanish first, asking children to pay attention to the pictures to see if they could figure out the story. I also used lots of actions (walking, swimming, playing basketball) to help out. Then I asked them what they thought happened in the story, and finally I did a quick read through in English.
CRAFT – Tissue Paper Flowers
All you need to make this quick and easy craft is tissue paper and chenille sticks.
FOOD TASTING – Mexican soda and Chiclets
Our local grocery store has a great Hispanic foods section where we found sodas in pineapple, mandarin, guava and tamarind. Each child got to taste a few different kinds and sample some Chiclets!