Meals provide an opportunity and context for speaking Spanish to your child. In addition to food vocabulary, there are many common verbs that you can use at the table.
These are some common Spanish phrases that are used at mealtime. They are not word-for-word translations of the English because often word-for-word translations do not make sense or would be something that no one would say. These are phrases that you can learn and use with your child knowing that she is hearing and understanding natural Spanish.
Comment on what you are doing before you ask your child a question in Spanish. This provides a context for the question, and also models how the question will be answered.
For example, you can say Quiero más (I want some more) and serve yourself some more salad. Then when you ask ¿Quieres más? and offer some to your child, she will understand what you are asking.
Remember that your child is learning Spanish as she hears you use it. Don’t worry if she doesn’t answer in Spanish. With time and repetition she will be comfortable repeating the phrases she hears.
Try to use these Spanish phrases at the table:
Vamos a comer. / It’s time to eat.
Me gusta. ¿Te gusta? / I like it. Do you like it?
Quiero algo de tomar. ¿Quieres algo de tomar? / I want something to drink. Do you want something to drink?
Quiero más ¿Quieres más? I want some more. / Do you want more?
Estoy satisfecho (satisfecha). ¿Estás satisfecho (satisfecha)? / I’m full. Are you full?
Terminé. ¿Terminaste? / I’m done. Are you done?
Con permiso / Excuse me.
Propio – This is used to respond to con permiso in any situation. At the table it is the functional equivalent of “You may be excused.”
Also, don’t forget to make these polite words a habit in Spanish, as well as English:
Por favor – Please
Gracias – Thank you.
De nada – You’re welcome.