Make it a Family Affair
Getting the whole family involved is a great way to help your child stay motivated. For example, throw a Spanish-themed dinner every month in which everyone is encouraged to speak Spanish.
Collaborate With Your Child’s Teacher
If you notice that your child is having difficulty with a particular concept, make sure to let his or her Spanish teacher know. By staying in constant communication with your child’s teacher, you’re able to thwart any bad habits.
Always Be Patient
Learning Spanish is no easy task, even adults have a tough time. Therefore, be sure to be patient with your child at all times. If he or she is stuck on a difficult topic, move onto something he or she feels more confident about.
Keep Things Interesting
When teaching your child Spanish, it’s important to keep things interesting. By playing Spanish learning games, kids will associate learning with fun. Singing, dancing, movement, and reading should all be incorporated in your practice sessions.
Spanish Games for Kids
There are tons of Spanish games for beginners. Below, we’ve rounded up our favorite 15+ fun and educational Spanish games for kids. Browse through the games to see which ones you like the most.
Take a set of index cards and write down different Spanish verbs. For younger kids, you can include both the verb and a picture. One child will pick a card to act out in front of the group. The rest of the participants will try to guess the verb being acted out. Some Spanish verbs lend themselves better to this activity than others. For example, bailar (to dance), correr (to run), and comer (to eat).
Create your own bingo cards with materials from around the house. Place a different Spanish vocabulary word in each square. After you say a vocabulary word out loud, the child will check his or her board to see if it’s present. If it is, he or she will place a penny on the appropriate square. You can create several different bingo cards based on themes; for example, you can make a board filled with farm animals or sports.
This rendition of the traditional game, Simon Says, does a great job teaching kids the different body parts and how to follow directions. Take on the role of “Simon” and issue commands. For example, you can say things like “Diego dice, toca la cabeza,” (Diego says, touch your head) or “Diego dice, mueve a la izquierda” (Diego says, move to the left).
This game is played exactly the same as the English version, except you can only use Spanish words. This allows students to see and recall words in a new way. Also, it encourages the student to think of words they wouldn’t usually use, because they have a limited number of letters to work with.
First, gather a set of index cards. On half the cards, create a mark with a colored marker. On the remaining cards, write out the name of an object in the room. Keep the two sets of cards separate. Next, ask the child to choose a card from each pile. After choosing a colored card and object card, the child will have to identify the specific colored object in the room and form the sentence, “I spy a ______”.
Create a Jeopardy board using a large poster board or the computer. Designate different categories that work on various skills; for example, “Spanish Geography,” “Spanish Verbs,” or “Spanish Vocabulary.” Playing this Spanish learning game will help your child review multiple topics simultaneously.
Who Am I?
Write out a list of individuals on index cards; for example, teacher, lawyer, athlete, etc. Have the child choose an index card and tape it to his or her back so he or she can’t see it. Then, have the child takes turns asking questions in Spanish about who she or he is; for example, “Am I male or female?”
One student will draw out a word from the vocabulary list on the board, while the other students try to guess the word. The first one to call out the correct word (in Spanish, of course!) gets a point. Creating an association between a visual reference and the Spanish vocabulary word is extremely helpful for retaining new words.
Match the Card
Create a deck of Spanish vocabulary cards and a deck of English vocabulary cards that correspond to those Spanish words. Place the cards faced down on the table. Then have your child try to find the correct match by flipping the cards over one at a time. Your child can play this game alone or with a partner.
Catch the Pelota
Purchase an inexpensive beach ball and divide it into equal sections. In each section, write a command in Spanish; for example,” Count to 10 in Spanish.” Arrange students in a circle and takes turns tossing the ball to each student. When the student catches the pelota (ball), whichever command his or her right thumb is touching he or she must perform.
Set the Scene
Create topic strips around which students can create a conversation. For example, the topic strips can say, “Two people ordering lunch from a restaurant,” “A doctor talking to a patient,” or “A tourist asking for directions.” Choose two students to pick a strip from a bucket. The students will have to use their Spanish vocabulary and grammar skills to act out whatever scenario they chose. You can make things more fun by having costumes and props available to the students.
Place several chairs in a circle and have students start walking around them. Start playing a Spanish song in which students are familiar. Whoever doesn’t find a chair when the music stops must join the “band” (ie you) in singing the song. As the game continues, more students will join the band until there’s only one student left—the winner.
Roll the Dice
Cover a large square box with white construction paper to look like a life-sized dice. On each side of the dice, write a Spanish verb. Have your students stand in one big circle and give each one a chance to roll the dice. Students will have to act out whatever verb is rolled.
Create a list of questions to ask students. You can separate the class into two teams or have students play individually. Ask the student/group a Spanish related question from your list. If they answer correctly, they can have the opportunity to shoot the ball. If they answer incorrectly, the other teams has a chance to “steal.”
Crosswords are a great way for kids to practice reading and writing Spanish.You can either create your own crossword puzzle or print one out online. This is a useful activity for when you’re driving in the car or don’t have a lot of time to set up a game.
Take a package of popsicle sticks and write a Spanish words on one side and English on the other. Then pass out one stick to every student and give one to yourself as well. Begin by calling out your stick in English. The student with the Spanish match says his/hers, and then flips that stick over to say the next word in English. The Spanish learning game continues until you have gone through all the sticks.
Separate the class into two teams. Team A is “up to bat” and Team B is “in the outfield”. A member of Team B (ie the pitcher) will ask a member of Team A (ie the hitter) a Spanish trivia question. If the hitter gets it right, he or she advances to the next plate. If not, he or she gets a strike—three strikes and he or she is out.
Who Wants to be a Millionaire?
This Spanish learning game works the same as the game “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.” Students are asked a series of Spanish trivia questions. Each student has three life lines: 50/50, ask a classmate, and skip. Every time they get a question right, they’re given a fake dollar or piece of candy. The child goes until he or she doesn’t have any more life lines.
Post Author: Breeana D.
Breeana D. teaches Spanish lessons in Abington, PA. Specializing in Early Childhood, Elementary, and Special Education, she is currently enrolled in Temple University’s Elementary Education program. Learn more about Breeana here!