If you are like me, you are always on the lookout for opportunities to expose children to Spanish. Of course, you can’t just throw words at them and expect them to learn! I’m looking for a way to create an engaging, quality educational experience. I recently found one with Peg and Pog, a Spanish learning app for kids from Kenikeni.
A Place to Play in Spanish
As a Spanish learning app for kids, Peg and Pog exposes children to the target language in a high-interest, low-pressure situation. That is a good starting point, but Peg and Pog goes beyond and creates a beautiful space for children to play and learn.
Just as valuable, the world of Peg and Pog is a place where teachers and parents can interact with kids to help them learn language. Read more about that below!
This Spanish learning app for kids features:
- 8 scenes that encourage creative, open play.
- Native speaker audio. Children hear the word each time they interact with an object.
- A picture dictionary with audio and text to support Spanish literacy.
- Diverse characters.
- Wonderful art.
- Spoken English Spanish, French, Portuguese and Mandarin. Most of what I say in this review applies to other languages too!
You can download Peg and Pog from the App Store. Kenikeni is working on Kindle and Android versions, and they’ll be ready soon!
The scenes in Peg and Pog are rich in detail and give children endless opportunities for creative play, but the number of words is not overwhelming. In addition, there is lots of build-in repetition to facilitate learning. Each time children move characters and objects in the scene, they hear native Spanish speakers pronounce the words.
Peg and Pog is an engaging Spanish learning app for kids to explore independently, but that is only part of the educational potential.
Read on for information about how teachers and parents can use Peg and Pog to develop language skills! You can also learn more about the app on the Kenikeni website.
A Teacher’s Perspective: Comprehensible Input
As I mentioned, Peg and Pog is a space to play and hear Spanish. For language teachers and parents, the scenes and their components are ideal for creating comprehensible input.
Parents, you don’t have to be a teacher to appreciate and apply this idea. If children understand the language they hear, they will acquire that language.
The scenes in Peg and Pog provide a specific context, characters, and a number of nouns related to the setting. I work hard to create contexts like this all the time so that children will understand and learn Spanish.
Teachers, if you are in a one-to-one classroom, this app may be an especially good fit. In addition, Kenikeni is creating free printables for the Spanish learning app for kids and for their other languages, so you can reinforce the vocabulary with physical tasks. You can find the Kenikeni free printables here, including these darling finger puppets!
Using Peg and Pog Spanish Learning App for Kids
Here are a few ways I use Peg and Pog with my students. Parents, you can certainly try these ideas with your children too.
Remember, I am the one supplying the verbs in these examples, so I can select the language and differentiate for a range of learners.
The characters and the object nouns are in the app, so the work is done for me, and the possibilities are endless! With all of the language examples below
- I narrate the scene as children play with the app.
- We illustrate language by arranging the scene.
- I ask yes-no, choice or opened-ended questions.
I’ll give examples in statement form to give you an idea of the language the app supports.
Each of the scenes lends itself to specific language related to the context.
- At the birthday party, we practice comer, tomar, and tocar by illustrating Pinky toca la guitarra, Peg toma limonada, Pog come un bocadillo, or dozens of other sentences.
- The grocery store is perfect for using querer and poner as the characters place food items into their baskets.
- In Peg and Pog’s room, we practice jugar and guardar as they play with their toys and pick up.
We can practice basic concepts in any of the scenes.
- Size comparisons – El oso polar es más grande que el zorro. El delfín es más pequeño que la ballena.
- Prepositions – La jirafa está detrás del elefante. El vaso está en la mesa.
- Colors – Peg compra comida roja. El león ve dos animales de color gris.
- Numbers – Pog tiene tres juguetes en la cama. Hay seis personas en la fiesta de cumpleaños.
High Frequency Verbs: The Super Seven
Peg and Pog also provides ample context for working with the super seven verbs. If you’re not familiar with the concept, you can read more at The Super Seven Verbs on Teaching Comprehensibly or Spanish Super Seven Verbs on Throw Away Your Textbook.
In a nutshell, all verbs are not created equal. A high percentage of the time, we communicate about existence, identity, location, possession, preference, motion and volition – concepts that can be expressed by 7 high-frequency verbs.
If we focus on these verbs in comprehensible contexts, students will acquire language to communicate their ideas more quickly than if they learn a large number of different verbs.
The scenes in this Spanish learning app for kids provide many opportunities to reinforce the super seven verbs.
Consider these examples from different scenes:
- Estar – Peg está en el trineo. Peg y Pog están en el cohete.
- Haber (hay/había) – Hay un abrigo y unos pantalones en el armario. Hay dos peces.
- Tener – Peg tiene leche en la canasta.
- Ser – El pez es bonito. El pulpo es de color morado.
- Gustar – A Pog, no le gusta la camisa. A Peg, le gustan los zapatos.
- Ir – Peg va a la cama. Pog va a la caja registradora.
- Querer – Benny quiere fruta.
If you would like see this Spanish learning app for kids in action, check out this feature on Peg and Pog on the AMC network.
As you can see, as a teacher, I’m excited about this Spanish learning app for kids. Peg and Pog creates a space for creative, child-driven play with a rich language component. Playing independently, children will hear and learn native speaker pronunciation of theme-related vocabulary.
For teachers and parents, the app also provides a context to create a rich language learning experience. If you happen to be in a one-to-one classroom, consider this app as one of your resources. It lends itself to focused language and comprehensible input, as well as lots of creative play. Let me know how you use this app with your students or family!
Disclosure: The company provided me with a copy of the product to use with my students and I was compensated for the time to write the review. All of the ideas and opinions are my own.