As a Spanish teacher in the United States I always try to include cultural themes, but I also want to ensure that I connect my curriculum with what the children are exploring in their own classrooms that may have nothing to do with regional or ethnic culture. For example, this week is Dr Seuss' birthday, and children are very excited about it. At my school, they even get to wear their pajamas all day and read a variety of books written by Dr. Seuss to celebrate.
What a great opportunity to bring that kind of fun and excitement to Spanish class! I created a very simple game I called "¿Dónde está el gato?" I used it with my Pre-K and Kindergarten classes, but it can be adapted for higher grades as well.
In preparation for the game, I printed ten Dr Seuss' red and white Cat-in-the-Hat hats. I cut them and pasted them on construction paper (see picture below). I also printed a picture of The Cat in the Hat character.
During class I counted the hats with the children, went over the colors, and reviewed the names of a few animals. I displayed the hats in the room and hid the cat under one of the hats while the children covered their eyes. I then asked a child in the class to take two turns trying to find the cat, while the rest were chanting, "¿Dónde está el gato?" The child looking for the cat had to say "¿Aquí está el gato?" and the class responded "Si, allí está el gato" or "No, allí no está el gato". I always model these kinds of sentences before and during any game.
Variations:You can find more characters for the children to find under the hat.
You can write numbers on the hats and have the children ask "¿Está debajo del 10?" or "¿Está debajo del 2?"