La Noche de las Velitas in Colombia {Freebie}

Every year on December 7th, Colombia celebrates “La Noche de las Velitas” (also known as El Día de las Velitas), a night filled with candles and joy to celebrate Virgin Mary. This night also marks the beginning of all Christmas activities in Colombia. 

What a good opportunity to bring some culture to your Spanish classes. Use a map and invite your students to find Colombia. You can also use Google Earth to make the trip more interactive and use a play passport for the trip. Share with them some information about this important celebration. Here are some useful resources for teachers to learn about the celebration:

La Fiesta de la Luz (Historia)
The Beautiful Noche de la Velitas in Bogota

Some videos of the celebration:

 Families get together to light the candles outside their homes. It’s a long night filled with happiness, fiestas and tons of Colombian goodies.

In the main parts of the big cities, people gather together to watch fireworks and shows.

Click here to view pictures
Invite your students to decorate the flag or the map of Colombia  with the candles! 
 Click HERE to download the freebies! 
Conversation tips in a FLES class
1. ¿Dónde se celebra la noche de las velitas? ¿En Costa Rica o Colombia?
2. ¿Dónde está Colombia? ¿América del Norte o América del Sur?
3. ¿Quién celebra la Noche de las Velitas? 
4. ¿De qué color es la bandera de Colombia?
5. ¿Qué lengua se habla en Colombia? ¿Inglés o español?
Enjoy!
Carolina

10 Cultural Games to Play in Spanish Class

I am always looking for ways to bring some culture to my Spanish class. One way to do it is through the use of traditional games. Below I am sharing links of some games that can be easily used in foreign language Spanish classes. Just click on the links to learn more about each game.

1. La Thunkuna (Boliva)

2. La Pirinola (Mexico)

3. El Patio de Mi Casa (Latin America)

4. Nerón, Nerón  (Nicaragua)

5. La Gallinita Ciega (Latin America)

6. El Ratón y el Gato (Latin America)

7. Juguemos en el Bosque (Latin America)

8. Color, Colorcito (Spain)

9. Pase Misí, Pase Misá (Spain)

10. El Semáforo (World)

Have fun playing!
Carolina

Las Molas {Cultural Exploration}

Every year I do this project with my second grade classes, and they are amazed at how beautiful and well crafted Molas are. I like to pretend that we are taking a trip together to the border of Panamá and Colombia to visit the Kuna-Yalapeople so we can learn firsthand about their art.

I use a map to locate the city and country where we currently live, and I use a paper airplane to travel from our homebase to the lands of the Kuna-Yala.

I also love using Google Earth to show pictures of the Kuna-Yala people and the places they live.

Many live on a small island in Panamá called San Blas, and they also live in small villages in Colombia in the “Darien Gap.” They speak the Tule language, and some of them speak Spanish. They are famous because of their art which is called “Mola,” a term which also means clothes in the Tule language. The Kuna women are the ones in charge of making the molas that are part of their clothing. I take this opportunity to share pictures of a few molas with the children and ask them to describe them by naming the colors they see.


I observe the pictures with my students and share with them the fact that molas are made of three layers. Two of the layers are the same shape, but with different sizes, a small shape and a big shape, laid on top of one another to expose the different colors. Then, simple shapes are used around the main part of the art to decorate it. All the layers are usually of different colors and are sewn by hand.

The “Make Your Own Molas”  Art Project

In this project we will use the same basic technique, but instead of sewing, we will be using paper and
glue.


You will need:
1. Construction paper
2. Glue
3. Scissors
4. Mola templates. Grab them HERE!

Once you have the template, print them on pages of different colors. Have your students cut the shape out and they will look like the ones on the pictures below:





Putting your Mola together

1. Glue the bigger template on the blank sheet of paper (red on top of blank yellow here).



2. Glue the slightly smaller fish (red here) in the fish shape of the template.


3. Glue the smallest fish (yellow one here) on top of the small fish (red here).



5. Use a different color and glue strips and dots of paper on the other shapes (green bits here).


6. Add some shapes to the fish (green strips here), and you will have a beautiful Mola!



Download the template HERE!

Happy crafting!
Carolina



     

Quetzal Art and Craft

Quetzals are found in the highlands of Guatemala and Mexico. For this activity, find a map where you can locate Guatemala and Mexico. You can also use Google Earth and find locations where this beautiful bird lives. What a great opportunity to review colors and describe the differences between the male and female bird (those differences being colors and feather length) – even a chance to touch on science and social studies, too. More information may be found HERE

Here is a great video that you can share with your students:
To make the art and craft you will need:
1. Glue gun or craft glue
2. Green pompoms, different sizes
3. Pieces of red and yellow felt
4. Googly eyes

5. Piece of a branch or stick


Steps:


1. Glue the pompoms together

2. Add googly eyes and use the yellow felt for the beak.
3. Use the red felt for the front of the bird.
4. Glue the green feather.

5. Glue the bird to the branch / stick.
6. Prepare the quetzal to sing in your room like this QUETZAL.



Happy crafting!
Carolina

Game: Juguemos en el bosque


I grew up playing this game in Colombia and had tons of fun with it.  I recently used it in a unit on clothes with my second graders. We have played the game outside when the weather is nice, and we’ve also played the game in the classroom with a wolf made out of felt. The children enjoy each of the versions – indoor or outdoor.

The game is simple, just pick a wolf and have everyone else sit in a circle. The wolf will stand up in the middle of the circle while the rest of the class chants.

I made the props for the song using felt (see picture below). We use it to dress the wolf while singing the song. My students love it!

Class: Juguemos en el bosque mientras el lobo no está. ¿Lobo estás?
Lobo: Me estoy poniendo los pantalones.

Class: Juguemos en el bosque mientras el lobo no está. ¿Lobo estás?

Lobo: Me estoy poniendo el chaleco.

Class: Juguemos en el bosque mientras el lobo no está. ¿Lobo estás?

Lobo: Me estoy poniendo el saco.

Class: Juguemos en el bosque mientras el lobo no está. ¿Lobo estás?

Lobo: Me estoy poniendo el sombrero (or sombrerito)

Class: Juguemos en el bosque mientras el lobo no está. ¿Lobo estás?

Lobo: ¡Sí! Y salgo para perseguirte / ¡Sí! Te voy a comer / ¡Sí! Corre

Here is a fun video with the song:


Here is another version of the song:


Have fun playing the game!

Carolina