Friday, November 16, 2018

Printable Bilingual Thanksgiving Acrostic Poems & Freebie

More bilingual Thanksgiving goodness! Do you remember doing acrostic poems when you were a kid? Usually, our teacher would whip them out around Mother's Day. They even made a song about it. You remember:
"M" is for the million things she gave me
"O" means only that she's growing old
"T" is for the tears she shed to save me
"H" is for her heart of purest gold
"E" is for her eyes with love-light shining
"R" means right and right she'll always be
Put them all together they spell MOTHER...

They were one of my favorite activities as a child (and I think they still are!). They are fantastic for beginning writers because they develop writing skills and critical thinking. They're also great for language learners because students have to think in terms of relationships: What words associated with Thanksgiving begin with....? And it boosts vocabulary.

So just for fun, I've put together this packet of bilingual Thanksgiving acrostic poem templates. It includes directions and examples in both English and Spanish, as well as five different acrostic pages with prompts of varying length and difficulty. There's also a blank page to allow children to use their own focus word.

You can find it here in my TpT store or the MommyMaestra shop.

BUT because it is Thanksgiving and because I am thankful for you, dear readers, I have created a sample freebie for you to use. I hope you enjoy it.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Thanksgiving Activity Pack for Preschoolers in English & Spanish

I've been on a creative roll the last couple of weeks. Thanksgiving is possibly my favorite holiday, so I've been digging out all of my Thanksgiving decorations for the house. And although I can't stand to be cold (and, oh, has the wind been so bitterly cold!), I love autumn: the colors, the scents, the images!

My thoughts have been on that early Thanksgiving between the Native Americans and the English settlers. I think about how dreary life might have been for the English without reliable heat, with the loss of loved ones, with illness and starvation. I think about the wives and mothers who braved the long trip at sea to come to this unknown (to them) land and how much courage that must have taken...and how much fear probably accompanied it. Starting over is hard. I've done it several times now. Most recently a year ago when we moved, I hope for the final time, back to Texas.

I think about the generosity of Squanto and his tribe toward these new immigrants who were so very, very different. Even though the relationship between settlers and the indigenous people swiftly deteriorated and led to a complete conquering of several Indian nations, for this brief moment, things were peaceable and life was good between the two. This is the thought that I cling to these days: that people can be good if they choose to be. People can let go of fear and embrace love for themselves and others. Greed can be vanquished, because really, what good is it? We can't take anything with us when we die, except our soul. And, I sure hope that mine is good and reflects love.

Anyway, these thoughts and my creativity have spilled forth into new printables. The first is this Thanksgiving Activity Pack for Pre-K and Kindergarten. It focuses, of course, on those basic skills that our little ones must learn: counting, beginning sounds, letter recognition, new vocabulary, writing skills, and more. But it also quietly reflects friendship, working together, and generosity. I wish my baby boy was old enough to enjoy it now, but he still has a few years to go.

I know that there are quite a few of these available online, but how many are available in both English and Spanish?

I'll tell you about my other fun activity next time. For now, you can find this print-and-go download in my TpT store and MommyMaestra shop.


Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Free Download: Fall & Thanksgiving Word Search in Spanish

Seriously, is Thanksgiving just a few weeks away?! Super thankful for MommyMaestra sponsor Spanish for You! who has created this free Spanish download that celebrates the holiday and helps your young Spanish learner boost their vocabulary!

Today's download is a word find that focuses on those words most commonly associated with Thanksgiving. As always, there is also an audio file to help your young student learn the proper pronunciation.

Thanksgiving Books in Spanish!

by Luciana Reis

by Alma Flor Ada

by Joy Cowley

by Pat Mora

by Luciana Reis

Remember! Spanish for You!'s program is geared for middle schoolers and is the perfect choice for homeschoolers and afterschoolers alike because their concepts are carefully divided up into manageable bundles that are available for immediate download from their website.

If this is your first time here, you can find other free samples from Spanish for You! here. There are some fantastic downloads of games and activities for you and your family to enjoy. If you enjoy this activity, be sure to visit the Spanish for You! website where you'll find tons of additional resources for you to help your young Spanish learner!

Monday, November 5, 2018

Resources About Voting for Children

Tomorrow is a powerful day in our country. We hold in our hands the ability to change our country's history. So much is a terrible mess right now. And only we can make it better. How?


The only thing you can do that would be more important is to take your children with you when you vote. I took my boys with me to vote on Friday (early voting). The baby was a disaster, but it was an important lesson for my older son anyway. :)

Can you believe that less than 100 years ago, women and blacks didn't have the right to vote? LESS THAN 100 YEARS. That's not a lot of time. And people worked and suffered to change that. People risked their lives to earn that right for themselves and others.

Here are some excellent history lessons on voting that I found online. Use them this week with your students:

Other awesome (and bilingual!) resources

If you are looking for bilingual materials, check out these MommyMaestra favorites:

• - This is a really awesome site with interactive games that teach children valuable lessons. And several of them are available in Spanish, such as Do I have a Right?/¿Tengo un derecho? and Immigration Nation/Nación de Inmigración. To play the games in Spanish, start the game and then click on "jugar en español" in the upper right corner. 

• has free coloring pages in English and Spanish for kids waiting in voting lines! Teach them while keeping them entertained at the same time.

• Here's an excellent article by the New York Times: How Do You Talk to Children About Politics These Days? Try These Books.

And finally, my favorite bilingual resource comes from the talented author, Mariana Llanos. A few years ago she wrote a book, A Superpower for Me. It is lovely. I wrote about it here. And the best part is that it is also available in Spanish: Un Superpoder para mi (aff link). Here's the book trailer:

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