Category Archives: Spanish

How did it all start?

Why knowing the origins of human communication helps us find better methods of teaching a foreign language.

There is much debate as to the way in which human language developed as our species evolved.   But many would agree that an early part of the evolution would have been the calling out of warnings of danger.

And it follows from this that the ability to tell stories must have come much later.

However, although as a species we had to wait for the evolution of the ability to invent and tell stories, this ability to tell stories proved to be a major evolutionary step. 

For whereas “Watch out behind you” can save an individual from injury, storytelling can bring a whole group together with a shared understanding.

In short, the few words that constitute a warning helps the individual.  The story preserves the unity of the whole group.

And it is because being part of a group remains so central to our lives that the use of storytelling in learning a foreign language is such a vital tool.   The children who learn French or Spanish with stories as a core part of their learning, can share their new learning and feel part of the group.

This is why our French and Spanish courses for years 3-4 and 5-6 are based around stories.  For just as our ancestors evolved language as a way of telling stories, so the power of the story remains, and enthuses children with the desire to learn a second language.

You can read more about our story based language courses for Spanish and French through the links below…

Learn French with Luc et Sophie 1ère Partie Starter Pack (Years 3–4)

Learn French with Luc et Sophie 2ème Partie Starter Pack (Years 5-6)

Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía 1a Parte Starter Pack (Years 3–4)

Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía 2a Parte Starter Pack (Years 5–6)

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, French, How children learn, Key Stage 2, lesson plans, Modern Foreign Languages (MFL), Primary school, Spanish, Teaching Ideas

Get your FREE sentence builder PowerPoint from “Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía”

Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofia is a story-based scheme addressing the Foreign Language Programmes of Study for teaching Spanish at KS2.

The Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía 1a Parte Starter Pack is based around a story featuring a young brother (Luis) and sister (Sofía) and their friends and family. The topic-based stories are written entirely in Spanish, use simple sentences and introduce key vocabulary and language structures.

The pack includes audio-enhanced e-storybooks for each of the 14 stories. The stories are acted out by native Spanish speakers bringing the stories to life. The e-storybooks can be shared with the class using an interactive whiteboard, read individually or in small groups.

The teacherʼs book contains lesson plans for each story, translations of the stories and exercises, games and activities focusing on enabling pupils to communicate in Spanish.

The scheme is designed with non-specialists in mind and will make implementing the National Curriculum for England easy. Self-assessment sheets can be used to monitor children’s progress and ensure coverage of all the Programmes of Study.

Click here to request your FREE sentence builder PowerPoint slide from
Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía 

(The sentence builder activity practises the third person singular form of the verb tener – tiene.)

For more information simply visit https://www.brilliantpublications.co.uk/book/learn-spanish-with-luis-y-sofia-1a-parte-starter-pack-years-34-758. 

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Filed under Brilliant Publications, Key Stage 2, Modern Foreign Languages (MFL), Spanish, Teaching Ideas

A vague curriculum needn’t mean vague progress

What is the most effective way of interpreting the requirements of the KS2 Programmes of Study for Foreign Languages?

The requirements of the KS2 Programmes of Study for Foreign Languages are somewhat vague. Indeed, how do you translate ‘speak in sentences, using familiar vocabulary, phrases and basic language structures’ into a four-year scheme of work? It is very much open to interpretation.

Not to mention how one might go about interpreting pupils’ progress – what exactly does ‘substantial progress’ look like?

Fortunately, Assessing Primary Languages is a tried and tested resource which has found answers to these questions by breaking the Programmes of Study into achievable, understandable objectives which are then cross-referenced across a total of four stages.

What’s more, the clearly laid out framework makes it possible to implement a unified tracking approach so that measuring pupils’ progress is effortless and, as such, can be used to plan subsequent lessons.

Both specialist and non-specialist teachers will find this rigorous tool, which contains a large number of creative and adaptable ready-to-use activities, to be invaluable.

For more information or to order Assessing Primary Languages for £37.99, simply visit: www.brilliantpublications.co.uk/book/assessing-primary-languages-743. 

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Filed under Assesssment, Brilliant Publications, French, German, Italian, Key Stage 2, lesson plans, Modern Foreign Languages (MFL), National Curriculum, Primary school, Spanish, Teaching Ideas

Spanish story to teach words for family members

In Tengo un hermano, Sofía and Marta are at the swimming pool. Marta tells Sofía that she has two brothers and a little sister. Sofía says she has a brother but she’d like a sister. What happens when Luis comes over?

The story is told via speech bubbles and is a fabulous way of introducing talking about brothers and sisters.

As with all Luis y Sofía stories, there’s a twist at the end. Barbara Scanes, the author, says that she used her own children (who are now in their 20s!) as role models when thinking of what Luis and Sofía would do.

Tengo un hermano - Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía

Tengo un hermano – Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía

Written entirely in Spanish this original, fun story uses repetitive phrases and simple sentences to embed vocabulary and language structures, making it ideal for Spanish beginners.

With engaging, full colour pictures and simple language on every page, this book can be read to, by and with children of any age.

Children with early Spanish language skills will gain confidence, and develop their language skills, when they realise they are able to read and understand a storybook in Spanish.

An audio enhanced e-storybook of this story is available exclusively as part of  the Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía 1a Parte Starter Pack.

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Filed under Key Stage 2, Spanish, Uncategorised

Spanish story to teach saying how old you are

In Tengo seis años, Luis and Sofía are at the swimming pool. Sofía introduces herself to Marta and they find out how old they both are. As with many siblings, Sofía is not happy when her older brother tries to join in the conversation!

The story is told via speech bubbles and is a fabulous way of teaching children to say how old they are.

As with all Luis y Sofía stories, there’s a twist at the end. Barbara Scanes, the author, says that she used her own children (who are now in their 20s!) as role models when thinking of what Luis and Sofía would do.

Tengo seis años - Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía

Tengo seis años – Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía

Written entirely in Spanish this original, fun story uses repetitive phrases and simple sentences to embed vocabulary and language structures, making it ideal for Spanish beginners.

With engaging, full colour pictures and simple language on every page, this book can be read to, by and with children of any age.

Children with early Spanish language skills will gain confidence, and develop their language skills, when they realise they are able to read and understand a storybook in Spanish.

An audio enhanced e-storybook of this story is available exclusively as part of  the Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía 1a Parte Starter Pack.

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Filed under Key Stage 2, Spanish

Spanish story to teach counting to 10

In ¿Cuántas galletas?, Sofía is having a tea party for her dolls. Does she have enough biscuits for all her dolls? She counts to find out. What happens when Luis comes in?

The story is told via speech bubbles and is a fabulous way of teaching children to count to 10.

As with all Luis y Sofía stories, there’s a twist at the end. Barbara Scanes, the author, says that she used her own children (who are now in their 20s!) as role models when thinking of what Luis and Sofía would do.

¿Cuántas galletas? - Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía

¿Cuántas galletas? – Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía

Written entirely in Spanish this original, fun story uses repetitive phrases and simple sentences to embed vocabulary and language structures, making it ideal for Spanish beginners.

With engaging, full colour pictures and simple language on every page, this book can be read to, by and with children of any age.

Children with early Spanish language skills will gain confidence, and develop their language skills, when they realise they are able to read and understand a storybook in Spanish.

An audio enhanced e-storybook of this story is available exclusively as part of  the Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía 1a Parte Starter Pack.

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Filed under Key Stage 2, Spanish

Spanish story to teach simple greetings

In Me llamo Sofía, the children go to the park with maman. Luis sees a boy playing football. They quickly find out each other’s names and start to play together. What happens when Sofía wants to join in their game?

The story is told via speech bubbles and is a fabulous way of teaching children to say what their name is, to ask others what they are called, and to respond to ‘¿Qué tal?’.

As with all Luis y Sofía stories, there’s a twist at the end. Barbara Scanes, the author, says that she used her own children (who are now in their 20s!) as role models when thinking of what Luis and Sofía would do.

Me llamo Sofía - Learn Spanish with Luis and Sofía

Me llamo Sofía – Learn Spanish with Luis and Sofía

Written entirely in Spanish this original, fun story uses repetitive phrases and simple sentences to embed vocabulary and language structures, making it ideal for Spanish beginners.

With engaging, full colour pictures and simple language on every page, this book can be read to, by and with children of any age.

Children with early Spanish language skills will gain confidence, and develop their language skills, when they realise they are able to read and understand a storybook in Spanish.

An audio enhanced e-storybook of this story is available exclusively as part of  the Learn Spanish with Luis y Sofía 1a Parte Starter Pack.

Leave a comment

Filed under Key Stage 2, Spanish, Uncategorised