According to research, children who learn a second language gain myriad benefits and are better set up for academic success in the future. Parents recognize this and therefore, second language classes for children are growing in popularity.
Of all of the language options, NBC News reported that Spanish classes were becoming more and more in demand. Parents are choosing Spanish for a variety of reasons, including the increasing number of Spanish speakers in business and the flexibility of learning a romance language.
If you are starting a business teaching language classes to kids, there are a lot of moving pieces you need to cover. First, you need to do administrative tasks like set business goals, create a budget, and write a business plan. Then, you can get into the fun part: planning your classes. In this article, we will outline resources, activities, and lesson plans to help you get started teaching Spanish to kids. ¡Vamos!
Teaching Spanish to kids
Spanish teaching resources
When you begin to write a curriculum for your Spanish classes, we recommend taking a look at what resources are already available to give you inspiration and get the ball rolling. Some of the best teachers make use of existing external materials to enhance their programming. Here are some helpful Spanish teaching resources that you can use as you get started.
- Online Free Spanish. This website has a variety of free worksheets, activities, games, and more that you can use in your classroom. Did you know that games enhance learning? This is a great resource to incorporate into your programming so your students can have fun and learn at the same time.
- Teachers Pay Teachers. We love this tool! Educators can go on Teachers Pay Teachers and compensate other instructors to use their classroom resources. It’s a win-win because more educators get access to great materials and teachers get extra income.
- Spanish Simply. This is another website with resources for early elementary Spanish educators. Just like the name suggests, it is simple and easy to use!
- Fabulous Classroom. The goal of Fabulous Classroom is to save educators time by providing resources, lessons, and products to help teach Spanish. You can use their digital resources, flashcards, games, puzzles, and more to make learning more fun.
- Soft Schools. Soft Schools offers a number of Spanish worksheets about topics like fruits, shapes, colors, emotions, and more. These can be great supplemental materials for your programming.
- Light Bulb Languages. This is a helpful resource if you are running after school programming or summer camp and you want your curriculum to match what children are learning in school. Light Bulb Languages has Spanish educational resources separated by grade to help you easily plan your lessons.
- Unidades Didácticas. A free, 150+ pdf chock full of Spanish activities and lessons for a variety of ages.
- Rock Alingua. Spanish worksheets that help teach children vocabulary for subjects like greetings, feelings, numbers and colors, body parts, types of clothing, daily routines, transportation, seasons, days of the week, jobs, and more!
- The Spanish Experiment. This is a collection of well known children’s stories like Chicken Little, The Three Little Pigs, and Goldilocks translated into Spanish and read aloud. Research shows that stories ignite imagination, bring joy, and aid in learning for children.
- Aprender Espanol. Another fun addition to your programming can be music. This website provides lyric videos and audio for 40 children’s songs in Spanish.
Spanish activities for kids
One of the most important parts of writing a lesson plan is determining the activities that your students will do. Activities make lessons more sticky: students remember what they have learned more successfully when they interact with the content through an engaging exercise. Since you are teaching in an extracurricular, camp, or after school program, your activities are even more important. Children are there to learn, of course, but it should feel different than school. Therefore, we recommend increasing the fun and making your lessons as active as possible.
Get your editable Spanish lesson plan template
To help, we gathered some Spanish activities for kids that Sawyer providers love incorporating into their classes and camps. Feel free to adapt these to suit your own goals.
- Write and illustrate stories in Spanish. This is a great activity for students because it combines a few different elements. Students will need to be creative and use vocabulary and grammar correctly to write their stories. Then, they can spend time drawing and decorating their storybook, and even reading it aloud to their peers, which is a fun addition to the class experience.
- Play Simón Dice (Simon Says). For children who are just beginning to learn Spanish, Simón Dice is a great way for them to practice vocabulary in a fun way. After you teach verbs and body parts, stand everyone up and play a few rounds of Simón Dice to see if they can recall what they have learned!
- Have a Spanish scavenger hunt. If the children in your program are a bit more advanced, you can write up a Spanish scavenger hunt for an activity. Give them simple instructions, like “Find a red leaf” or “Draw a picture of a dog” all in Spanish. The first team to accomplish all of the tasks will win! Bonus points if you can safely do this activity outside, since outdoor educational games are a great way to keep children active and having fun during warmer months.
- Cook together. This is a great activity if you have a small group of students in your class. Come prepared with a recipe written in Spanish and all of the ingredients. Work with the students to read the recipe, identify what is needed, and make it come to life! Start with something on the simpler side like pan con tomate, guacamole and homemade tortilla chips, or empanadas.
- Make history come to life. Spend some time teaching your students about important Hispanic figures from the past and present like Frida Kahlo, Cesar Chavez, Selena, Rafael Nadal, and more. Then, ask them to choose one and write a paragraph (in Spanish) about them. Finally, have your students dress up as their chosen figure and read their paragraph aloud to the class. This is a great activity because the students learn about many different historical figures as well as practice writing and speaking in Spanish. Plus, they will have fun dressing up!
Teaching Spanish to kids is a great way to get children ready for their future and share your love of the language and culture with a new generation. If you are looking for guidance on managing and running your children’s education and activity business, the team at Sawyer is here to help.
With our suite of tools, like custom forms to record allergies and t-shirt sizes, flexible payment options like gift cards and installment plans, and seamless scheduling and registration on any device, Sawyer saves business owners 28 hours per month. If you are ready to spend less time on admin and more time doing what you love, see how Sawyer can help with a free trial or demo.