Any educator should consider three approaches when selecting Spanish bilingual books for kids. Should the book be solely based on pictures and simple words? Or, should the books be more comprehensive with pictures and simple sentences? As a matter of fact, Spanish bilingual books for kids should have pictures, simple one or two syllable words, and simple sentence structure.
In particular, picture books with simple one-syllable words are more adequate for preschoolers or early elementary school children. With these types of books, children tend to learn more easily with pictures of the specific item and a one-word identification. One specific example is a picture dictionary. This type of reference material clearly should state the Spanish word, a translation of that word, and a clear illustration of the word.
Young children tend to learn new words by using simple one or two syllable words. Parents and educators can select books with easy-to-read words and encourage the pronunciation of each syllable. In this way, syllable formation emphasizes pronunciation, vocabulary, and phonetics.
As parents and educators present different types of books to children, they should consider books with simple sentence structure. Actually, some books allow parent and child to read together: an adult reads a sentence or two and the child can read one word on the next page. Other book examples show the sentence with pictures. This allows the adult to read the sentence and the child can finish reading it by identifying the picture in the sentence.
Whether books are beautifully illustrated or show simple sentence structure, parents and educators should consider reading bilingual books to kids a fun experience. Children tend to like learning new words by reading together. By sharing diverse Spanish bilingual books, the act of reading can be a language skill that can last a lifetime.
Barbara has science degrees in Biochemistry and Chemistry. She has taught under the NCLB program and she is currently an educator in Spanish, Science, and Math. You can learn more by visiting her blog at www.spanish4kiddos.com