¡Es divertido hablar dos idiomas!

A place to share books, music, techniques, and all things related to bilingual storytime!

Monday, March 2, 2015

¡Day by Day VA en español!

I am excited to share with you all that a project I have been working on for the last year and a half is finally finished and ready to be used. Day by Day VA is an online family literacy calendar. It was originally created in South Carolina and Virginia took the content and adapted it for their needs. Each day features a song/rhyme, a book, an activity, a video and one or two websites for further information or activities. I was hired in 2013 to create a Spanish language companion site, and it is now complete! You will find in this Spanish language calendar many traditional Spanish-language children's songs and rhymes, as well as made up tunes that piggyback on well-known Spanish and English songs. Each day features a Spanish language or bilingual children's book, with an emphasis on highlighting excellent Latino children's literature, and a video that is either fun for kids or informative for parents. Resources for more activities or further information are linked, including many excellent resources from around the Spanish-speaking world. Though designed for families, the site could be useful for librarians and educators as well. Please take a look and share with customers and colleagues who may find the site useful. If you have a chance, let me know what you think!

Me encanta muchísimo compartir con ustedes un proyecto en el que había trabajado por más que un año. Day by Day VA es un calendario digital de la alfabetización familiar. Lo había creado originalmente en el estado de South Carolina, y el estado de Virgina lo adaptó para la comunidad allá. En cada día hay un libro recomendado, una actividad, un video y uno o dos sitios web recomendados para más información o actividades. La Biblioteca de Virginia me contrató en 2013 para crear un sitio en español para acompañar el sitio en inglés. En el calendario en español, encontrará muchas canciones tradicionales en español, además canciones traducidas que usan ritmos familiares. Cada día presenta un libro para niños en español o bilingüe e incluye muchos autores e ilustradores latinos. Además, muchos sitios web con más información para los padres o actividades divertidas para los niños son incluidos. Este sitio es diseñado para las familias, pero es útil para los bibliotecarios y educadores también. Por favor, explórenlo y compártanlo con clientes y compañeros que pueden usarlo. ¡Si quieren, díganme lo que piensan!

Monday, February 23, 2015

March 2015 Bilingual Storytime Online Class

Hi everyone! Just a quick update that this is the last week to register for my next session of "Bilingual Storytime at Your Biblioteca," which is being offered by Library Juice Academy during the month of March. The details are below, and you can register or find more information at the LJA course page - http://libraryjuiceacademy.com/033-storytime-biblioteca.php. Please be in touch if you have any questions; I hope to meet some blog readers in the class group!

Bilingual Storytime at Your Biblioteca    

This 4-week, online course teaches participants how to present bilingual storytimes (English/Spanish) for various ages, regardless of their own language skills. Video demonstrations, articles, online resources and course discussions direct students as they learn how to successfully deliver the various elements of bilingual storytimes, either on their own or with a bilingual community partner. Participants will discover new books, rhymes, songs, plans and resources that they can immediately put to use in their bilingual storytime programs.

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will learn how to select and use the following components in bilingual storytime: books, songs, rhymes, fingerplays, and stories for telling aloud.
  • Students will experiment with incorporating bilingual materials into their existing storytime programs.
  • Students will select books and other materials they can use to increase inclusion of Latino culture and the Spanish language in their English storytime programs.
  • Students will articulate how bilingual storytime supports the early literacy and school readiness needs of Latino children, and identify online resources for sharing early literacy and school readiness information with Spanish-speaking parents.
  • Students will each develop two bilingual storytime plans.

NOTE: This course does not address outreach/marketing to Latinos and Spanish-speakers, and is best suited for libraries that are already successfully serving these communities. Libraries interested in learning how to establish or improve services to Latino and Spanish-speaking families are encouraged to take the course, “Building Relationships, Building Bridges: Library Outreach and Marketing to Latino and Spanish-Speaking Families.”

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Il Sung Na

Occasionally I'd like to highlight an author or illustrator whose works are particularly well-suited for bilingual storytime. This will include Latino authors and illustrators, of course, but also non-Latinos whose works are available either bilingually or in Spanish translation. One of those is Korean author/illustrator Il Sung Na. I first fell in love with Na's works when A Book of Sleep came out in 2009. The illustrations absolutely drew me in. I was over the moon to later find it in Spanish as ZZZZZ Y ellos...¿cómo duermen? The translation absolutely held up and this became a storytime favorite for owls, night and bedtime themes.

Since then, two more of Na's books have become available in Spanish. El escondite is about a group of animals playing hide-and-seek and Brrr El libro del invierno is a winter book. I have my fingers crossed that more are still to come, especially The Thingamabob, which is about an umbrella and would be great for a weather or rain storytime.

Have you used any of Il Sung Na's books in storytime? Tell us about it!

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Green is a Chile Pepper

We all know I'm a big fan of John Parra. Unabashedly. I simply love his work. And I am a recent fan of Roseanne Greenfield Thong. She has written a number of books that simultaneously introduce first concepts and celebrate diverse cultures. I have found that her books are very practical for early childhood educators to incorporate into the classroom, and I regularly use them as examples of simple, high-quality diverse children's literature in the workshops that I offer to early childhood educators here in Kentucky. So I am over the moon that these two, who paired up in 2013 to bring us Round is a Tortilla, worked together again to create Green is a Chile Pepper, which received a Pura Belpré honor for illustration at the 2015 Youth Media Awards. As a side note, this year's awards were filled with recognition of diverse authors, illustrators and books. Kudos to all of the committee members. It was thrilling to be a part of this year's announcement.

As anticipated, this title uses Latino imagery, traditional foods and Spanish vocabulary to introduce colors in both English and Spanish. The text is simple, the illustrations are lively and the rhyming text is pleasant to read aloud. This title is a natural fit for storytimes about colors, whether bilingual or not, but can also work for food or family themed programs. This title would also work well in a classroom setting. Educators and librarians can extend the story with a color sort activity, perhaps even as a group on the flannelboard.

Do you have this book in your library or school? Have you read it with your child? What other titles would you pair it with for a colors themed bilingual storytime?

Read more about the Belpre award and its influence in this article recently posted on I Love Libraries.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

February Class: Library Outreach and Marketing to Latino and Spanish-Speaking Families

Hi everyone! This is a quick post just to let you know that there is still time to register for my February class on library outreach to Latino communities being offered through Library Juice Academy. The details are below. One important point is that I strongly encourage taking this class if you are interested in later taking "Bilingual Storytime at Your Biblioteca" (next offered in March). Outreach is a key component of setting a bilingual or Spanish language storytime program up for success. Hope to see some blog readers in the group!

Building Relationships, Building Bridges: Library Outreach and Marketing to Latino and Spanish-Speaking Families

Instructor: Katie Scherrer
Dates: February 2-27, 2015
Credits: 1.5 CEUs
Price: $175
Public libraries across the country experiencing growth in their Latino and Spanish-speaking populations face similar challenges in connecting these communities with library service. Though libraries may offer Spanish-language materials and/or programming, these services may not attract the targeted community as desired. This class is designed to help libraries to bridge the gap and increase the use of their services by Latinos and Spanish-speakers, with particular emphasis on reaching first-generation immigrants and their families. Participants will increase their knowledge of Latino cultural values that impact library use, develop an understanding of common barriers that impede library use, and develop strategies for overcoming those barriers. Participants will also identify key people/organizations within their own communities for potential partnerships. This course is strongly recommended as a prerequisite for “Bilingual Storytime at Your Biblioteca.”

Register here - http://www.libraryjuiceacademy.com/032-spanish-speaking.php.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Latino Art! ¡Arte Latino!

Yuyi Morales' recent bilingual book Viva Frida has inspired me to share some ideas for programs that celebrate Latino art and artists. This programs can be done bilingually or monolingually, as needed to best meet the needs of the group and with the resources your library or school has to offer. Remember, you do not need to be bilingual to use bilingual materials or to be inclusive of Latino cultures in your programming! And you don't have to wait for Hispanic Heritage Month!

Toddler / Preschool Storytime

Song: Mister G: Colores - A simple, bilingual song that introduces the colors with a fun beat. 
Add color scarves or egg shakers to this song. Kids can even look for the various color items as they are introduced in this song, depending on the size of the group. 
Book: Green is a Chile Pepper by Roseanne Greenfield Thong
Flannelboard Activity: Practice the colors in English and Spanish and the Spanish vocabulary introduced in the book by adding the items one at a time to the flannelboard. This could also be done digitally for those using iPads and other technology tools in their storytime programs. 
Book: Viva Frida by Yuyi Morales
Final Activity/Craft Ideas:
  • Color Sort: Have parents/caregivers work together with children to sort objects of various colors into groups. This helps children not only to learn their colors, but also to develop the Kindergarten Readiness skill of recognizing similar attributes. 
  • Self-Portraits: Use paints, markers or any other art supplies suitable to your group and have children create their own-self portraits. You may want to first show them self-portraits done by artists such as Frida Kahlo for inspiration. 

Early Elementary School Age

Book: Diego Rivera: His World and Ours by Duncan Tonatiuh
Activities: There are several art activities you could do with children based on this book. 
  • Talk about murals and have them work together in small groups using butcher paper to create their own murals. 
  • Show students works of art by Diego Rivera and have them create their own individual art that explores similar themes or uses a similar style. 
  • Introduce students to the Mixtec Codices, which inspire Duncan Tonatiuh's stylized illustrations, and have them create their own symbol based language.

Mixed-Age Family Program

Book: De Colores = Bright with Colors by David Diaz
Board Books for Young Children: I always recommend having board books available for mixed-age programs. It's something that babies can have in their hands and parents can softly read one on one, while older children are engaged with other activities. Any of the books in the Arte Kids series, such as Colores Everywhere! would be great for this program.
Song: "De Colores" with color balls and a parachute. I like the version by José-Luis Orozco.
Book: Colors! ¡Colores! by Jorge Luján
Family Activities:
  • Painting!: Kids love to paint, whether its with brushes, sponges, or their fingers, but the materials may be too expensive and the cleanup to extensive for this to be a family-friendly activity to share at home. Help families share in the joy of creating a masterpiece with their child by doing it together at the library or program center. Cover tables with newspaper and have old t-shirts or smocks for the kids to put on to reduce the mess. Provide supplies and some fun music to set the tone and let the creativity flow!
  • Pattern Play: Using dot paint markers or something similar, have adults work with their children to practice identifying and extending pattern, an important school readiness skill. Parents can make patterns, beginning with very simple ones and then perhaps working up to something more challenging, and ask their children to predict what comes next. Then children can work on creating their own patterns for their parents to complete!
If you try out any of these ideas, leave us a comment and let us know how it goes! Happy programming!

Monday, January 5, 2015

Colorín Colorado - A Resource to Know!

Part of what I'd like to do with the re-launch of this blog is to introduce readers, particularly librarians and educators, to great resources that are available that can help you to better serve Latino and Spanish-speaking families in some capacity. The first resource that I would like to share is one that I have been using for years, ¡Colorín Colorado!.

¡Colorín Colorado! is a completely bilingual (Spanish/English) website, dedicated to providing support to anyone working with English Language Learners. There are special sections for educators, administrators, librarians and families. It is a project of WETA (based out of Washington, DC) and a sister site to Reading Rockets. The website is extensive--definitely one that I would recommend bookmarking in order to browse through during slow periods on the desk in order to better get to know what all it has to offer. Here are my highlights of some of the website's fantastic components and how I use them:

  • Reading Tip Sheets: These tip sheets for parents are available as PDF downloads in 11 languages. Tip sheets cover babies through grade three. I like to have these handouts distributed at storytime and with books in the children's area for parents to pick up. Would also make a great tool to send home with homework. 
  • Early Literacy Articles: Over 30 articles about early literacy skill development, many of which are excellent for parents and which include tips of activities to do at home to help reinforce early literacy skill development. Click the "En español" button on the left side to access the articles in Spanish. I like to print out articles relevant to what we are exploring in storytime in both English and Spanish to provide to parents as a take-home. 
  • Free Guides and Toolkits: A number of helpful resources. Particularly excellent is the Engaging ELL Families: 20 Strategies for School Leaders document. Library staff working to better serve diverse communities can also benefit from the information and strategies in this document. 
  • Multimedia: Videos and podcasts with authors, experts in ELL education and classroom teachers provide excellent professional development opportunities for anyone serving ELL's in their work. 
Take some time exploring this valuable site, sign up for relevant newsletters and check back often, as new content is always being added. FYI, I am not being compensated in any way for my recommendation--I genuinely use this site frequently and hope to share its spectacular content with others. Already using ¡Colorín Colorado!? What's your favorite resource on the site? How are you using the site with colleagues and/or families?