Have you ever read a child a Spanish book that is just too hard? It isn’t fun for the child, and you quickly realize no language learning is going on. That is why I am so happy to share these Spanish-English board books. The books provide useful, natural language at a perfect level for Spanish learners.
Reading picture books is one of the best ways to expose kids to language. However, many books have too much vocabulary and story lines that go beyond the illustrations. Fortunately, the Spanish-English board books by Leslie Patricelli have short sentences supported by bright pictures. They are published by Candlewick Press and are perfect for Spanish learners. Read about other Candlewick Press picture books for Spanish learners.
Spanish-English Board Books by Leslie Patricelli
These Spanish-English board books:
- Are funny and fun. The characters have personality!
- Are short and hold the attention of kids learning Spanish. There is plenty of language, but not too much text on each page.
- Have complete sentences with useful vocabulary. Children need to hear words in sentences, and sentences in the context they are used.
- Are full of useful words. These Spanish-English board books have vocabulary based on daily routines and family events. The situations are familiar and relevant.
- Use everyday phrases in context. For parents, these are great examples of simple, natural sentences to use with kids.
- Use high-frequency verbs in the present tense.
- Include a group of related vocabulary. Several of the books have this feature, and I love it! Basically, the books include a fun mini-picture dictionary that builds on a concept in the story. These additional examples delight kids, and offer more vocabulary in the same context. Boo!/¡Bu!, Tubby/Bañito, Yummy Yucky/¡Ñam! ¡Puaj!, and Huggy Kissy/Abrazos y besitos have this feature.
- Cover lots of topics. Leslie Patricelli has written and illustrated various Spanish-English board books at this level. I mention a few of my favorites below.
- Are affordable and durable. I consider books an essential investment, so it is important to me that they can be used with different ages and that they hold up to lots of reading. These Spanish-English board books are hardy, entertaining for kids into the elementary grades and inexpensive.
Favorite Spanish-English Board Books
Yummy Yucky/¡Ñam! ¡Puaj!
This story is a humorous look at what is good to eat and what isn’t. Accordingly, it has lots of common food vocabulary, along with other high-frequency words for things we don’t eat. In addition, the last pages are full of additional items in both categories. Find Yummy Yucky/¡Ñam! ¡Puaj! on Amazon. (aff link) Use these Spanish food activities to expand on the learning in the book.
The Birthday Box/Mi Caja De Cumpleaños
This is an adorable story of a birthday child who makes the most out of a box. After exploring the box (lots of prepositions), it becomes an airplane, a boat, a sled, a robot, a spot to eat, and finally a place to rest. Find The Birthday Box/Mi Caja De Cumpleanos on Amazon. (aff link)
Huggy Kissy/Abrazos y besitos
A book with family vocabulary in a story full of expressions of love. In addition, the last pages have a wonderful collection of additional hugs and kisses: abrazo de oso, besito de buenas noches, abrazo en grupo, besito en la mejilla, etc. Find Huggy Kissy/Abrazos y besitos on Amazon. (aff link)
This bathtime story has lots of verbs in the present tense: estoy, juego, cuento, voy, lavamos, etc. Find Tubby/Bañito on Amazon. (aff link)
This story is about all the things Baby and Mantita do together, so it is an excellent introduction to routines. For example, Baby says “Mantita va a la tienda”, “ve los mismos programas que yo”, “me acompaña mientras cepillo los dientes”, “escucho a mi lado mis cuentos favoritos,” etc. Find Blankie/Mantita on Amazon. (aff link)
This perfect Halloween story for Spanish learners has key vocabulary for jack o’lanterns, costumes and trick-or-treating. I especially like the two mini-picture dictionaries – one of pumpkins and the other of costumes. Find Boo!/¡Bu! on Amazon. (aff link) Combine this book with some of our fun Spanish Halloween activities.
Finding books at the right level for kids learning Spanish is a constant challenge, and these Spanish-English board books are excellent. Yes, they are board books, but they reach beyond toddlers and preschool. The simple, complete sentences make them a great resource for learners into the early grades. Read these books to your kids, and watch their joy as they understand, laugh and learn.