Children's Music


Lesson by Amy Doyle

Aim: How can exposure to Spanish language and culture enrich our everyday lives?


  1. Magazine pictures or photos of people dancing
  2. Small bean bag
  3. Drawing materials
  4. Drum or anything that can be drummed, like a garbage can upside down
  5. “Merengue” by 3-D and player


Learning Objectives
By the end of this lesson, students will:

  1. Repeat three Spanish expressions: “estan bailando,” “no te sientes” and “sienta te.”
  2. Interpret the expressions “sienta te” and “no te sientes.”
  3. Interpret song and represent its meaning in a drawing.
  4. Dance basic merengue rhythm.


Activity 1

Teacher will ask students to stand up and dance when she starts drumming. Do this a few times using different rhythms. Then ask for volunteers to drum while other students and teacher dance. Finally, teacher will drum a basic “one-two” rhythm so that students can begin to feel the merengue rhythm to which they will be introduced in the song.


Activity 2

Sitting in a circle, teacher will show students picture of dancers and ask them, “What are these people doing?” After students answer, “they are dancing,” teacher will say the same phrase in Spanish: “estan bailando” (“a” in Spanish is pronounced like a short o in English; the “ai” is pronounced like the long “i” in “side”). Ask students to repeat several times, then do a bean bag toss in the circle in which one student says “estan bailando” then throws the bean bag to another student who will say it.


Activity 3

Have students stand in back of their seats in preparation for a drawing activity. Tell them, “In Spanish, a teacher would say, “sientate” (see-yen-ta-tay) to her student to tell him or her to sit down or she would say “no te sientes” (no-tay- see-yen-tays) if she did not want the student to sit. Let’s all say, “sientate.” Let’s all say “no te sientes.” Each of you will ask if you can sit down and I will answer either “sientate” or “no te sientes.”


Activity 4

Have students listen to “Merengue” by 3-D and draw pictures of what they hear being described in the song.


Activity 5

Demonstrate merengue (you can find clear directions in the song) and then play “Merengue” again and let students dance.