How do you teach children clothing words in Spanish? Well, you approach it like any other set of vocabulary – in context.
There’s some spirited questioning in the early language (and secondary!) field about how best to present some concepts. Daily activities, particularly reflexive verbs, is one. You’ll hear teachers be quick to question how often one describes one’s daily routine to someone else, especially using phrases like
When I get out of the shower, I dry off.
Yes, those are in the textbooks.
Weather is one, too. The classic example is the weather report assignment. Sometimes learners are assigned a task to do an elaborate video of a weather report. It’s fine, it’s fun, but it takes a whole lot of time on a little bit of language.
I’ve always preferred to do weather and seasons in the context of clothing and activities, and since I’m the primary author on Stories Online Level D, I got to write it that way. There’s a big emphasis on both in this level, and when clothing comes up, it’s often in the context of the weather.
- Example 1: Pepe shows up in Michoacán in the fall wearing fall clothing, but it’s a hot day to trek to the cemetery to decorate Ofelia’s grandfather’s altar for Día de Muertos. He’s got to change his ropa.
- Example 2: When there’s a historic snow on a day when Ofelia and César are headed to town, César has to put on his abrigo and botas.
- Example 3: When summer’s come and it’s time for a swim in the lake, of course César needs his traje de baño.
But we’re Calico Spanish and we don’t do this kind of thing without kids’ favorite way to learn: music. We hadn’t done a clothing song before, and it was high time we did.
I found this old tune called “La canción de las manzanas” in a 1904 book of school songs and the lyric popped into my head. I wrote the song and once again teamed up with the highly talented Obed Gaytán for the music.
Llevo mi gorra
con mis zapatos
y un short azul.
Voy de paseo con mi amigo
porque es verano y hace calor.
con buenas botas
en mis pies.
Salto en charcos con mi amigo
Tengo paraguas, que llueve hoy.
Llevo un gorro
bufanda y suéter
con mis vaqueros
y abrigo hoy.
Juego en la nieve con mi amigo
Aunque hace frío, quiero jugar.