Recently, I wrote about a wonderful yoga story in Spanish, Lucas en un día en la playa. The Spanish coloring book Lucas y los animales australianos de la A a la Z is also from Kids Yoga Stories and it is an excellent choice for children learning Spanish. You can find Lucas y los animales australianos de la A a la Z on the Kids Yoga Stories website or Amazon.
Before I get into the details of how this book enriches language learning, I have to point out that this is not a coloring book in the traditional sense. It is a book, printed on high-quality paper, with lots of content about animals and Australia. It also has an activity on every page – a yoga pose for children to do. Yes, children can color the pages, but this book is meant to be read again and again and it will guide many hours of family yoga fun.
Learning language is all about engagement. Children have to actively connect with Spanish for it to be meaningful. This Spanish coloring book engages children on several different levels and creates a rich language experience.
One of the key ways that Lucas y los animales australianos de la A a la Z engages children with Spanish is through movement. Research has shown that movement enhances language learning. The yoga poses children do as they read or color this book represent the words they are learning. When they pose as un cocodrilo, una serpiente or un canguro, they internalize the words they are hearing and saying. You can learn more about yoga and language learning here.
Children also connect with the language through coloring. Kids are thinking about the picture as they color, so it is the perfect opportunity to talk about the animal and its surroundings. Children will associate the language they hear with the pictures on the page. In addition to reading the text in the book, parents and teachers can use the pictures to talk about colors, body parts, plants, and land forms. The pictures are a perfect springboard for conversation, and the language can easily be adapted to the level of the child.
Lucas y los animales australianos de la A a la Z also engages children with wonderful drawings and really interesting content. This book will appeal to children (and adults) of all ages. Australia has amazing animals, and the author has tapped into the diversity of the country to introduce children to a fascinating selection of creatures. Each animal is presented in its habitat, so in addition to animal words, children learn important vocabulary like mar, bosque tropical, río, árbol, hierba, arroyo, and arbusto.
Finally, the animals are ordered based on the alphabet, giving the book a familiar structure. Once children have read the book a few times, it lets them predict which animal comes next, and which yoga pose they will do. The underlying structure of the alphabet also engages children with the text on the page when they are reading and coloring, and it offers an excellent opportunity to talk about individual letter sounds.
Yoga is a wonderful complement to language learning. This coloring book combines yoga, coloring and Spanish creating an opportunity for children to connect with the language in different ways and repeatedly over time. It would be valuable addition to any setting where children are learning Spanish.
Disclosure: The author sent me a copy of this book so that I could write the article. All of the ideas and opinions are my own.