La toupie, la corde à sauter & les billes

Marbles

These are the three games that my first grader constantly plays at school. Every day she drops in her bag a jumping rope, a bag of marbles and her wooden top. La toupie, la corde à sauter, les billes. La peonza, la comba, las canicas.

jumping rope

They speak French and Spanish in between of the classes. With two of her friends she speaks Spanish, with her other friend French. All the kids are bilingual; trilingual if you count Catalan. The game names are in French and in Spanish.

They share the patio with the older kids, some of them are really good at one or more games. My daughter says she watches how the big kids play top or marbles and learns. Then, she plays with her own friends. Myself I went to school in Moscow, Russia and as a kid I never played marbles or top. Thus, I am starting from zero here. My daughter showed me how to play marbles and we manage to play it at home. However, I can’t make the top roll as it should. Yesterday we had guests and they were able to show my daughter how to make the top roll. In Spain the kids games in school have not changed over decades. Everybody knows how to play marbles, roll tops and jump rope. I found it sort of cool.

top

I enjoy the games the kids are playing at school. Every day my six year old shows me the new marbles that she won from her friends, she is excited about those colored crystal balls. Les billes. She admires kids who can jump a rope for 20 times in a row or who can make the top roll and then pick it up on their palm while still in motion. For whatever reason I thought that kids did not play those games any more. And now, I am reverenced when my first grader, already dressed in her boots and winter coat, runs back to her room because she left her bag with marbles next to her pillow.

“Mon sac de billes!”

“What’s your favorite book?” I asked my kids (Part 2)

My son will turn four in February 2014, thus he is almost four now. To the amazement of our  frequent guests he loves to spend time with books. If the guest is willing to read to him, this will be a never ending story. He will accommodate himself on the guest’s knees and bring book after book to be read to him.

He also tells stories to us and our guests. Yesterday he told our friends who came for dinner “You know, I just ate a mouse!” And he went on enjoying the details of his imagination.

I asked him to give me some of his favorite books, and these are the ones he brought me.

(note:  because our family has moved three countries since he was born, he speaks good Russian, Spanish, Catalan, French and some English)

Favorite books of my almost four year old son:

1. Ecoute les bruits de la foret (Listen to the sounds of the forest)

Ecoute les bruits de la foret

 

2. Усатый-Полосатый Маршак (Children poems by Marshak)

Усатый полосатый

 

3. Chuggington magazine

Chuggington

 

4. La historia de El Cid Campeador adaptacion por Carmen Gil-Bonachera (The Story of the Cid adapted by Carmen Gil-Bonachera)

Cid el Campeador

 

5. Elmer by David McKee

Elmer

 

6. Let’s Go for a Drive by Mo Willems

Let's go for a drive

 

7. 10 Petit Penguins por Jean-Luc Fromental (10 Little Penguins by Jean-Luc Fromental)

10 petits penguins

 

8. The Empty Pot by Demi

The empty pot

 

9. Tante Bruns Fodselsdag by Billedbok and Elsa Beskow (Aunt Brown’s Birthday by Billedbok and Elsa Beskow)

Tante Bruns

 

10. Bonne nuit, Petit Ours! by Didier Zanon (Good Night, Little Bear! by Didier Zanon)

Bonne nuit, Petit Ours!

 

11. Como mola tu escoba por Julia Donaldson (Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson)

Como mola tu escoba!

 

12. Palmier de Noel pour Audrey Poussier

Palmier de Noel

 

13. Le Plus Malin pour Mario Ramos

Le Plus Malin

 

14. Renato aide le Pere Noel pour Maud Legrand et Virginie Hanna

Renato aide le Pere Noel

 

15. The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson

The Gruffalo

 

16. Лучшая книга для чтения от 1 до 3 (The best book for kids 1 to 3 in Russian)

Лучшая книга для чтения

 

17. 1001 cosas que buscar en el pasado (1001 things to spot long ago)

1001 cosas que buscar en el pasado

 

18. The Tiger Who Came to Tea by Judith Kerr

The Tiger who came to tea

 

19. Приключения Незнайки и его друзей Николай Носов

Приключения Незнайки

 

20. Sant Jordi i el drac por Anna Canyelles i Roser Calafell (Sant Jordi and the dragon by Anna Canyelles and Roser Calafell)

Sant Jordi i el drac

“What’s your favorite book?” I asked my kids (Part 1)

Every year I ask my kids what are their favorite books. I want to document their likes, because a lot of times I am curious to know what were my favorite books when I was their age. And I wish somebody would have done the list of what books I read the most when I was three, four, five, etc.

Last time I asked my daughter about her favorite books when she was five. Right now she is six and a half and the 2013 is almost over. I asked her and my son this morning to select about a dozen of their most favorite books. I will publish both lists.

Part 1Favorite books of my six and a half year old daughter
(note: she was born in California, USA, currently living in Barcelona, Spain and going to a French school. Her main languages are Russian, Spanish, Catalan and French, and some English)

1. El Mago de Oz por L. Frank Baum (The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum)

El Mago de Oz

2. Jean de la Lune pour Tomi Ungerer (Moon Man by Tomi Ungerer)

Jean de la Lune

3. Les Trois Brigands pour Tomi Ungerer (The Three Robbers by Tomi Ungerer)

Les Trois Brigands

4. Georges le Dragon pour Geoffroy de Pennart (Georges the Dragon by Geoffroy de Pennart)

Georges le dragon

5. La historia de los Reyes Magos (The story of the three wise men)

Los Reyes Magos

6. Чудо Чудное Русские Сказки (Russian Fairy Tales)

Чудо Чудное Русские Сказки

7. Planeta Tierra (Planet Earth)

Planeta Tierra

8. Маленький Принц Антуан де Сент-Экзюпери (The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery)

Маленький Принц

9. El Sistema Solar por Rosalind Mist (The Solar System by Rosalind Mist)

El sistema solar

10. Busca los Caballos (Find the Horses)

Busca los caballos

11. No Es Una Caja por Antoinette Portis (Not a Box by Antoinette Portis)

No es una caja

12. The Wonderful World of Knowledge, Transport

The wonderful world of knowledge. Transport.

13. Ponis por Laura Marsh (Ponies by Laura Marsh)

Ponis

14. Les plus beaux chevaux (The most beautiful horses)

Les plus beaux chevaux

15. L’imagerie du poney et du cheval (The visual dictionary of ponies and horses)

L'imagerie du poney et du cheval

16. Diccionario por imágenes del bosque (The visual dictionary of forest images)

Diccionario por imágenes del bosque