Weekly Spanish Challenges

NOTE: This page is a synopsis of challenges sent to families back in 2021, and will be updated shortly (sometime in August 2022).

Spanish Challenge #7

CHALLENGE #7: This week, the Spanish Challenge is more linguistically oriented: watch the video below, starring the one and only Pato. It is action packed, fast-paced, and well worth 3 minutes and 46 seconds of your time. Email back the answer to this question: who (do you think) actually robbed the bank?



Spanish Challenge #6

CHALLENGE #6: Plantains appear very similar to bananas, but are not the same food at all: they are starchy and much harder, and cannot be eaten raw. Your challenge is to make tostones or patacones (“tohs-TOE-nays”/ “pah-tah-KOH-nays”, aka plantain chips) to munch on this week. These are a very popular snack in Spanish-speaking countries and really easy to prepare: RECIPE HERE. Another way to cook them is for breakfast, as mangú (“mahn-GOO”). Mangú is a special dish in the Dominican Republic; the recipe is HERE. Read below for a possible etymological origin of this word and a fun story. Email me to receive credit if you make something!

“The origin of mangú started back in 1916 when the Americans invaded the Dominican Republic; afterwards, the soldiers would go into town. Then one day, one of the soldiers wanted to taste some of the mashed plantains he saw the locals eat. When he tasted it, he said ‘Man, this is good’ and pointing at it, he said in short ‘man good!’. The locals thought that the name of the mashed plantains in English was mangú.”


Spanish Challenge #5

CHALLENGE #5: Decide what Spanish-speaking country** your bedroom represents, and then decorate a sign for that country and hang it on your door. If you share a bedroom, you can pick two countries! Make sure to spell the name right. HERE is a link to the country flags. Email me a photo to get credit!

Now after dinner you can say, “Bye Mom and Dad, I’m going to Bolivia! See you later/¡Hasta luego!” If you feel inspired, THIS PRESENTATION has a few photos you can print out. (Note that the latter does not include pics for every country yet–only the ones grades 2-4 have covered in class.) Happy travels!

**COUNTRY NAMES: Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Bolivia, Perú, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Panamá, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, México, Cuba, La República Dominicana (Dominican Republic), Puerto Rico, España (Spain), Equatorial Guinea.

Spanish Challenge #4

CHALLENGE #4: Take 15 minutes and listen to all five of these classic songs that have been translated/ adapted to Spanish (below). Let your child guess which movie it is by LISTENING to the first few chords before watching the video!

Next, vote on which Spanish song translation is your favorite (parents, please email me so that your children will get credit). Note: your favorite song in Spanish might not be the same as your favorite in English, but that’s okay!

Spanish Challenge #3

CHALLENGE #3: This week, look at your clothing tags, the sticker labels on your fruits and vegetables, and the labels on cans and other food products, and notice where these things were made and where they came from. For example: clothing “Made in Guatemala”, bananas from Costa Rica, avocados from Mexico, etc. Parents: This can be a great detective game/ activity for your children at the grocery store!

Then, find 3-5 products from Spanish-speaking countries**; or fill in my chart on the following slide (blank chart HERE). Be sure to take a picture of the stickers/tags you find and have your parents email me so that you get credit for your work.

**Spanish-Speaking Countries: Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico (technically a territory), Spain (Espana), Equatorial Guinea.

Spanish Challenge #2

CHALLENGE #2: La Tomatina is a festival that takes place in Spain every August. Due to the pandemic it is canceled this year, but normally, thousands of people gather in the streets and throw tomatoes (yes!) at one another. READ THIS to learn why.

Your challenge is to try making GAZPACHO, a cold tomato soup from Spain that is incredibly refreshing on hot summer days. My friend from Spain said that using watermelon as a base instead of water makes it even more delicious. ¡Qué rico!

NOTE: Not all Spanish classes will meet the first week of school, so I am combining the first two weeks as “one week”, and therefore offering two challenges.

Spanish Challenge #1

CHALLENGE #1: Watch a movie in Spanish. Change the voiceover to Spanish and the subtitles to English. It is okay if you don’t understand everything! Your brain does a lot of work just by listening. The movie can be one you have seen a thousand times, or a brand new one. Animated films are great! If you don’t know how to do this, Google “how to change voiceover for [XXXX device/ Hulu/ Netflix/ etc.]”, or play around on the “Settings” page to change the language.

NOTE TO NATIVE SPEAKERS: Fluent Spanish-speakers are welcome to change the voiceover AND the subtitles, and notice the differences in translation. This can be pretty interesting because the translations are often done in different countries. That means that someone might say, “¿Cómo estás?” but the subtitle will read, “¿Qué tal?” (or vice-versa). Food for thought!