Today’s lesson is all about the calendar and how to say the date in Spanish! I also introduced a few weather expressions. I have all the pieces and instructions you need to do calendar time in Spanish.
Download the lesson and materials here:
How I Made a Calendar to Have Spanish Calendar Time
I’m a high school teacher so don’t have a lot of experience doing calendar time. When I first graduated from my teaching program, though, I subbed for several years and was able to teach calendar time in the elementary classes where I subbed. This gave me an idea of how I wanted to teach this lesson.
I started with setting up a calendar board similar to the bulletin boards I’ve seen in elementary classrooms. I searched elementary teachers’ blogs and homeschooling blogs for a reminder of the things they include and what they look like. I’ve incorporated ideas from here and here. Here is a great explanation of making magnets and using a whiteboard for calendar time.
I kept my calendar board a little simpler because I don’t want to overwhelm my kids with too much vocabulary. In a few weeks, I’m going to add a section for events so we can use the near future (I’m going to, we’re going to) to talk about upcoming plans. I’m also going to create flashcards for more weather expressions like “it’s cloudy”, “it’s raining” (both a must for living in the Seattle area ☁🌧☁), “it’s sunny” (actually, living here they don’t really need this one…😄), etc.
I bought the foam board, glue dots, and poster tack from the dollar store because I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on this. I had originally planned to use hook and loop tape but couldn’t find any there so bought glue dots and poster tack. I think I like the poster tack better anyway. I have more freedom to move things around now.
I looked for bulletin board borders too but didn’t see any that I liked. I wanted some color on it and saw some fun wrapping paper. I’m not crafty but love color, so I bought the wrapping paper hoping to use it for a background to add a splash of color.
I ended up using the wrapping paper as a background for the calendar. I made sure to glue the calendar low enough to leave space to stick the month above it with poster tack. I then glued the date and days of the week statements below the calendar so that info would all be together.
On the other side, I glued the “¿Qué tiempo hace hoy?” label and the thermometer to make the weather area. I used poster tack for the arrow so we can move that around to show the weather for the day. There is a big empty space next to the thermometer which doesn’t look great right now, but that’s where I’m going to put additional weather flashcards like “it’s cloudy” after they learn the expressions related to the thermometer. Under the weather area, I glued pockets that I had made to store the days, months, and numbers. I used this tutorial to make the pockets. Super easy!
There is also a big, ugly, empty space between the pockets and the calendar. That is where I’m going to put a laminated piece of paper to write events for the week so we can use the near future. Teaching the near future using ir is a few weeks away, so when I teach that we will start talking about upcoming events. I will include how I’m using this with calendar time.
Aidan volunteered to cut out the numbers, days, and months. He’s been dragging his feet with the other lessons, but this one he was really into. I came back to the living room later, and he had used the poster tack to put all of the numbers on the calendar.
How I’m Teaching My Kids to Say the Date in Spanish
This is going to be an on-going lesson because I feel it makes the most sense to teach the days of the week, months, date, and weather in context.
For the lesson, we reviewed colors, numbers, and body parts with the monster drawing. I read a sentence at a time and had Aidan translate it into English. Then I said the month for him to hear in Spanish, and I asked him “¿Cuál es la fecha hoy?” I told him what it meant in English and then how to answer in Spanish. We used poster tack on the back of the 1 and marzo labels to fill in the “Hoy es el…” sentence.
Then I read the next two sentences “Hoy es…” and “Mañana es…” and translated those. We used the poster tack again to put the domingo and lunes labels on to complete those sentences. I also explained that the days of the week and months are not capitalized in Spanish and that Monday is the first day of the week in Spanish-speaking countries.
We had an interesting discussion about this. He said having Monday as the first day of the week makes more sense, and he likes that better than having Sunday be the first day of the week. I asked him why, and he said that Sunday is a family day so it should be like a reward at the end of the week. And Monday is the first day we go to school and jobs. He made some good points. 🤔
Do you know anyone who wants to teach their kids the days of the week and the date in Spanish? Feel free to share with the buttons on the left.
Which do you prefer? Should Sundays or Mondays be the first day of the week? Tell me in the comments below!