Here are five suggestions of short books in Spanish for children between Kinder and 2nd grades. All these stories are related to the Hispanic culture and they are also available in English.
Kids’ Books: Spanish Reading Suggestions for Grades K to 2nd
by Pat Mora
Doña Flor is a giant lady who lives in a tiny village in the American Southwest. Popular with her neighbors, she lets the children use her flowers as trumpets and her leftover tortillas as rafts. Flor loves to read, too, and she can often be found reading aloud to the children. One day, all the villagers hear a terrifying noise: it sounds like a huge animal bellowing just outside their village. Everyone is afraid, but not Flor. She wants to protect her beloved neighbors, so with the help of her animal friends, she sets off for the highest mesa to find the creature. Soon enough, though, the joke is on Flor and her friends, who come to rescue her, as she discovers the small secret behind that great big noise.
|Also available in English: Dona Flor: A Tall Tale About a Giant Woman with a Great Big Heart
|Juan Bobo busca trabajo
by Marisa Montes
What can you do with a boy who tries to do things right but only leaves disaster in his wake?
Laugh--that's what! Readers everywhere will love to laugh at the hilarious antics of the ever-blundering Juan Bobo, Puerto Rico's most celebrated fold character.
In this rollicking Juan Bobo tale, our hero sets out to find work at the farm and the grocery. Although the tasks are simple and the directions couldn't be clearer, he always find a way to bungle things up as only a character whose name means "Simple John" could!
|Also available in English: Juan Bobo Goes to Work: A Puerto Rican Folk Tale
|Chato y los amigos pachangueros
by Gary Soto
This lively tale of party-loving barrio cat who throws a surprise celebration for his friend Novio Boy is available in Spanish for the first time ever. With a lively text, bold art, and a setting and theme with Hispanic flavor, this is an ideal choice for the non-English-speaking reader.
|Also available in English: Chato and the Party Animals
|La tienda de mamá y papá
by by Amelia Lau Carling
A fabric and thread store in downtown Guatemala City in the late fifties is the setting for this evocative picture book. Mamá, Papá and six brothers and sisters live behind this magical store, with its roof terrace that provides a view of the city and the surrounding volcanoes.
The narrator’s parents fled China during the Japanese invasion and, along with a few neighbors, found refuge in Central America where they set up their business. In the story, people come from all over the city and even the countryside to buy their bright fabrics, brilliant threads and other supplies for weaving and making the clothes that Native Guatemalans are famous for.
Amelia Lau Carling, who is both author and illustrator of this delightful book, depicts an almost magical kingdom where Chinese, Guatemalan and Native cultures meet in a harmonious and enchanted space – where children can play and learn about all the different peoples who make Guatemala City alive. The story is especially poignant in light of subsequent events in Guatemala’s tragic history.
|Also available in English: Mama and Papa Have a Store
|Nacho y Lolita
by Pam Munoz Ryan
n this tender friendship story that will melt your heart, acclaimed storyteller Pam Munoz Ryan and talented newcomer Claudia Rueda reveal that any difference can be overcome with love.
Once, when the two Californias ran alta y baja, high and low, along the Pacific, there lived a rare and majestic bird named Nacho, the only pitacoche for thousands of miles. He was proud of his brilliant feathers and haunting songs, but what good were they with no one to share them?
Then the swallows came to nest and Nacho met Lolita. His heart filled with affection. Was it possible for two such different birds to find happiness together? And what would happen to Nacho when Lolita and the other swallows migrated back to South America?
|Also available in English: Nacho And Lolita
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