Children will truly get the “flavor” of Spanish traditions with these cooking and music-making activities.
- Grades: PreK–K
• small paper bags
• paint and brushes
• rubber bands
• dried rice
• Spanish music and player
• maracas (if available)
Objective: Children will engage in art, music, and cooking activities that celebrate Spanish culture and culminate in a fiesta.
Que Linda Manito
Share this traditional Puerto Rican finger play and "cancione" (song) with your class:
Que Linda Manito
translation: A Pretty Little Hand
Que linda manito
How pretty, how little, (hold hands together)
Que tiene el bebe
This sweet baby's hand (gently stroke hands)
Que linda, que mona,
So soft and so pretty, (open hands and turn over)
Que bonita es.
How lovely it is. (hold both hands close to heart)
Fingers so tiny (wiggle fingers)
Rayitos de sol,
Like small rays of sun, (open hands wide like
Que gire que gire
Around and around (turn hands around and around)
Como un girasol.
Like a twinkling sunflower. (wiggle fingers and open)
Paper Bag Maracas
- Explain to children that they are going to make instruments called maracas. Show children a real maraca if available. Provide each child with a small paper bag, washable tempera paint, and a paintbrush. Ask the children to use the paint to decorate their paper bags.
- After the bags have dried, provide children with dried rice. You may want to place it into a small plastic cup so that children can pour it easily into their paper bags. Hold the bag with the open end upward and tighten the end of the bag securely with a rubber band, leaving a few inches at the end for the children to grip.
- Get in a "fiesta" mood and introduce your children to recorded Spanish children's music cassettes like Esta Es Mi Tierra (This Land is My Land) by Jose-Luis Orozco (Arcoiris; CD: $13.97) or Pinata and More! Bilingual Songs for Children by Sarah Barchas (book and cassette, High Haven Music, 1987; $12.95). Encourage children to keep the rhythm with their maracas, sing along, and dance along to the music.
Cooking: Tortillas Wraps. Set out tortillas, grated cheddar or jack cheese, grated lettuce, refried beans, guacamole, and other appropriate toppings. Provide each child with a tortilla. Place the ingredients in separate bowls. Assist the children in placing their toppings onto their tortillas and rolling them up. What a fun way to eat!
by Susan Canizares and Pamela Chanko
(Scholastic Inc.; $3.25)
Say Hola in Spanish
by Susan Middleton Elya
(Scholastic Inc.; $2.96)
The Three Little Javelinas
by Susan Lowell
(Northland Publishing, 1996; $15.95)