girl = niña
back to school
sun = sol
Easy Spanish for kids
EVER THOUGHT ABOUT giving your kids
a jump-start on learning a foreign language?
Kids Love Spanish, a seven-part DVD series
available at selected Costco warehouses and
on Costco.com, is designed to teach children
ages 1 to 8 the basics of Spanish.
The series, which was recently honored
with an iParenting Media Award, was developed by two sisters, Krisse Brock Kelly and
Julie Brock Campbell. The Costco members
grew up in El Centro, California, in the
Imperial Valley, not far from Mexicali, Mexico.
Both Kelly and Campbell studied in
Guadalajara, Mexico, becoming fluent in
Spanish. Later, both women graduated from
college and worked in bilingual capacities in
the workforce before getting married and
starting families of their own. They eventually
developed this series because they couldn’t
find learning videos that engaged their young
children in learning Spanish.
When I brought a video home for my kids
to test recently, I believed I was going to see a
Dora the Explorer copycat production. Not so.
Instead of the animated entertainment
approach of Dora, Kids Love Spanish is a series
of 30-minute, live-action videos that cover the
Spanish alphabet, numerals, family terms,
food, colors and shapes, animals and basic
phrases. The DVDs feature brief appearances
of Cacto (Spanish for “cactus”), an animated
character that reinforces the lessons. All in all,
this series takes a fairly academic approach.
I watched one of the discs with two of my
daughters, Tess, 7, and Pearl, 11. The DVDs
are repetitious and include lively colors and
age-appropriate music. Because they are
geared to younger viewers, Pearl looked at me
and rolled her eyes. Tess, however, enjoyed
repeating the words. The best part is that
when we reviewed them at the end, she
remembered almost all of the new words, trying to pronounce each one in her own version
of a Spanish accent.—Will Fifield
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