ABC Games are Hard for Latino Kindergartners to Play and Win

It’s a big mystery for Latinos when they have an object that needs an ABC home and can’t place where it belongs. Words come and go for them, APPLE/manzana, BEAR/oso, etc. They keep disappearing. Learning English letter sounds does not have to be like this for Latino kindergartners from Spanish speaking homes.

ABC games seem as though they are in an unreal world full of fog. Nothing is clear. One moment the ‘word’ is there, the next it is gone. Nothing is stable. How can they win with uncertainty all around them? They can’t seem to control the fog. Who is making this unreal situation happen?  Who make can the fog clear up?

Latino kindergartners must know two things in order to assign an object a spot: the name of the object on the reference chart, A is for apple, and the name of the object in question. Where does it belong? Latino kindergarteners from Spanish speaking homes may know the beginning letter sound, but not an object’s English name.

Spanish and English are similar languages and share many sounds, R, T, L, M, etc. These similarities can be entrance tools for the Latino kindergartner. Acknowledging these similarities and including user-friendly examples, AIRPLANE/avion and TURTLE/tortuga, will make the ABC game fair for the Latino kindergartner.

Awareness of the beginning sound of objects is the essential key to knowing its letter station. This is a high bench goal for Latino SSH kindergartners to possess, especially during their first experience with a second language.

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