The last quarter of school, every child is highlighted on their very own “Star Day.” On this special day, the parents of the Star child are invited to come to class and do an activity with the children. Some parents may choose to play a movie, make some crafts, play some sports, etc.
Since my girls love to make beaded jewelry, I dyed some pasta noodles (super easy and cheap–food coloring and rubbing alcohol!), purchased some stretchy necklace cord, and we made noodle jewelry in both girls’ classes.
All of the kids in both classes really seemed to enjoy it (even the boys, which I was a bit worried about)!
Here is Ella and her best bud, Alex (the only other classmate who has 2 Gringo parents). Alex has been living in Mexico for nearly 3 years, and is now fluent in English and Spanish.
The view of Ella’s classroom. The kids all wear uniforms–a school polo shirt and navy bottoms of choice (skirt, shorts, pants, or even a dress).
It was kind of funny to see how the different children managed their noodles/beads. This beautiful little girl (with a Barbie doll Mom, I might add…) separated hers by color and type. She was the only one!
In Maiya’s class the children tried very hard to bead the noodles. “No puedo,” they exclaimed (“I can’t”), as the teachers and I assured them they could! With a bit of help, all of the kids managed to walk away with at least una bulsera o collar (a bracelet or necklace).
One of Maiya’s best buds, Jimena:
Maiya’s teacher helping some of the children glue noodles to a sun clip-art I printed out, just in case some of the kids wanted to do it, too!
A view of Maiya’s classroom. This is the youngest group at the school, and some of these children are still in diapers!
Maiya’s entire day is in Spanish. She is picking up a lot of the language, and her teachers tell us she seems to understand almost everything.
She has also mastered the Spanish roll of the tongue. It is ridiculous how she applies it, though. She rolls EVERYTHING, even when seemingly impossible.
These are some words she manages to roll (don’t ask me how): could, would, hurt
You try it, see if you can pull it off!
When Maiya is playing pretend and talking to herself, she almost always talks in “Spanish.” I must put it in quotes, because it is not true Spanish. Sure, I hear plenty of Spanish words, but she also sticks in Spanish-sounding gibberish, too. It is cute to hear her make up words, but have them sound Spanish instead of English.
Also, about 50 times a day Maiya gives us a Spanish translation for a word. If we are talking about a computer keyboard, for example, Maiya would say something like this:
“My teachers say ______” (insert a true Spanish, or made up Spanish-gibberish word).
I applaud her when she is correct, and when I know it is just Spanish-sounding gibberish, I just say, “Oh, Really?“, to which she confidently says “Uh-huh!”
Overall, I am hearing both of the girls use much more Spanish, lately (even Ella)! They often respond with simple answers in Spanish…and I am discovering already that they are teaching me! I am so excited for them to be fully bilingual. What a huge blessing and benefit this will be to them in their lives!
Now if only I could manage to become bilingual this quickly, too! How jealous I am! Fortunately, I am understanding more and more, but I really lack the skills and knowledge to put the sentences together (I need to study more). The exciting part is that I now find myself thinking in Spanish…or at least challenging myself to figure out how to say a particular phrase in Spanish…which is a good first step!