Ancestry, Bilingual kids, bilingual mom, Bilingualism, Compassionate parenting, Padres compasivos, Spanish grammar, Tu, Usted, Spanish Pronouns, Spanish Verbs, Discipline, Spanish immersion, Spanish teacher

La Chancleta vs. Other Ways of Discipline…

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My mother and her two brothers in Colombia. Photo by TeachThemSpanish.com

“¡Getting a chancletazo because I said ¿qué? instead of mande!” The image of the Hispanic mom with chancla or chancleta on hand ready to dar un chancletazo or “discipline” the child is pervasive in talks about Hispanic culture etc. That was the way back in the old days… Y claro, que esto pasa…Yes, this has … does happen… it must be if there are so many images, jokes, bloggers and people on social media, YouTube, radio, TV etc. talking about it right? Go ahead and google chancla and chancleta and see what you find.

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La Chancleta vs. other ways of discipline. TeachThemSpanish.com

La chancla or chancleta comes under the “the beatings will continue until moral improves” form of discipline…pero ay por el amor a  Dios, it’s not the only way we discipline!

There are other options. More effective ways for discipline that a Spanish speaking person has at their disposal that do not exist in the English language … that we can talk about as well and that’s thanks to something I like to call S.L.G.  or Spanish Language Grammar! It makes it sound a little more scientific. There is also the opportunity to check for anything you might be carrying that is in your power to change about yourself that could be causing the issue. I give myself the: Oye…qué es lo que está pasando aquí…(Where did this really come from? Who started this? Could I have done something different to pre-empt this?) This we talked about in an earlier blog back in April titled “Poco a Poco” where we mentioned Compassionate Parenting.

But let’s say you decide that what is called for is a voice of authority for your child…yes, of course we all need to be an authority, they need that from us also. Well, here’s something people also do in the Spanish language community that is subtle but effective sometimes…here’s where Spanish Language Grammar comes in handy.

As you may or may not already know, the Spanish language has many different pronouns for the you form. We are talking about the singular form. You have the familiar vos (used in Argentina, Uruguay, etc. and we will tackle this at another time) and   form, which oftentimes you use for close friends, family, or if is all you’ve known all of your life you use it with everyone except when in some cases you notice it doesn’t seem right with some people.

Then there is the usted form which is used for people you don’t know well, just met, or out of respect, elderly, etc. (Although nowadays with Facebook all of this is changing quite quickly I might add…) And, it can be used as well to help  dar un poco de espacio …give some space between people.

My mother grew up in Barranquilla, Colombia, which is considered La Costa, and people can be more informal, closer to the temperament of the Caribbean, and use the informal or form more often than usted. Her family was from many places in Colombia of El Interior, Chiquinquirá, Boyacá, Cali and the South of Colombia Condoto, Chocó. She had a mom and dad who talked among themselves with the formal usted at all times. That threw me off a bit when I met my grandfather, from Chiquinquirá, in Colombia at the age of 9 that he should talk to me so formally.

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Chiquinquirá, Colombia.

 

My grandmother and mother used the usted and more interchangeably with us. And since they were in charge of discipline… they came equipped with just the right grammatical tools.

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Con mi abuela y mami en Puerto Rico. TeachThemSpanish.com

Discipline with my mom was sometimes a matter of a change in pronoun…or verb tense…if you were not meeting expectations or out of line you knew it because all of a sudden mom was treating you with a formal form of usted, sort of like in English… the parent uses the full name… Jonathan Edward Thompson… you take your hand away from there or you will get burned! ¡Quite la mano de allí que se va a quemar!

You can also do so with the verbs. When you ask someone to do something you can also use Los Mandatos or the more Formal Command form. I call it the “bossy” tense. Here are the regular and irregulars informal first then the formal…

With regular verbs you would just change the ending right? and here you have examples of that in the Formal:

ar verbs have an “e” ending – Limpiar – ¡Limpie! – Clean

er and ir verbs have an “a” ending – Correr – ¡Corra! – Run

The irregular verbs in the Command Form:

English/Informal/Formal

Come – ¡Ven! – ¡Venga!

Tell – ¡Di! – ¡Diga!

Get out – ¡Sal! – ¡Salga!

Do – ¡Haz!  – ¡Haga!

Have – ¡Ten! – ¡Tenga!

Go – ¡Ve! – ¡Vaya!

Put – ¡Pon! – ¡Ponga!

Be -¡Sé! – ¡Séa!

You see why I call these the Bossy Verb Tense…you get your message across without a doubt!

An easy way to remember the irregular verb commands in the regular form is to imagine this to be something Arnold Schwarzenneger could say “Van Di Sal Has Ten Weapons” in a movie in some intimidating tone:

VENDISAL HAZ TEN VEPONSE

So back to the infamous chancla. Let’s do this. Let’s put the myth of la chancla to rest and back on our foot where it belongs and talk about other ways we can discipline. I would not approve of any cultural practice that causes another person physical harm or invades a person’s free will. The moment we have a child… it’s time for us all to find other ways, grow and evolve.

Here are some uses for Tú and Usted from favorite artists… see if you can notice the change in tone just a simple change in pronoun can have. Enjoy!

Luis Miguel delivers a sweet and stern message for usted, from his Romance album of 1991, that makes a good example of Tú vs. Usted use. Notice the conjugation all throughout.. No juegue con mis penas, ni con mis sentimientos…Comprenda de una vez…

Ricardo Arjona, the talented singer, songwriter, former basketball player and schoolteacher, from Guatemala, wrote and released this song in 2012 with fellow Guatemalan singer Gaby Moreno. Fuiste Tú, that is to say: It was you… or It was your fault.  Tú reaches the target and does not get any more intimate than in this song about a couple that is looking back on what happened.

Subscribe now and receive notifications regarding new upcoming articles, songs and resources to assist you in your efforts to teach your kids Spanish.The opinions in this page are simply coming from the perspective of Prof. Constancia. I am sharing with other mothers and fathers with the intention of helping our children in their development, creating a community that will help all of them progress in their Spanish studies and cultural expression.Share your opinions with us on this page or on Facebook. If you would like to ask questions or work with me regarding affiliate marketing, giveaways or other projects, please email me at Constancia@TeachThemSpanish.com. Thanks.

 Subscríbase ahora y podrá recibir los avisos de nuevos artículos, canciones y recursos para enseñarles a sus hijos español. Las opiniones en esta página son simplemente una perspectiva de la Sra. Constancia. Compartiendo con otras madres y padres un deseo de ayudar en el desarollo de nuestros hijos y crear una comunidad que los ayude a progresar en sus estudios y expresiones culturales en español. Comparte tus opiniones con nosotros en este muro o en el de FacebookSi quieres hacer alguna pregunta, tienes alguna idea que quieras compartir o deseas colaborar con nosotros en algún proyecto de mercadeo escríbe a Constancia@TeachThemSpanish.com. Gracias.

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Poco a poco… / Little by little

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Spanish is a language that allows me to express a lot of different emotions. Yes, it is different. I am a different person when I speak Spanish than when I speak in English. Do you find that it does that to you too? Imagine the opportunities we can give children with this other dimension… when we expose them to the different languages.

As it is… children live in an emotional world. I had heard a long time ago in educational psychology Prof. Romeo say to us that once we started dealing with kids we would be invited into a world of emotions. It’s an emotional world that they live in. You are invited in. What are you going to do once you are there? How are you going to handle yourself?

Writing about this emotional world as a student without having any experience was one thing, I had to cite the psychologists that I would be tested on the next week and show my book knowledge about them. Now having been a teacher and mom has given me plenty of experience from which to draw. But now I know why she said what she said. My suggestion is the same: remember they live in an emotional world. We are invited in. Whether we speak in English or Spanish…How are we going to handle ourselves?

Another great influence in my life was a preschool teacher, (and in my view a master of life teacher) Ms. Caruso, of Sunflower Creative Arts, who taught us first-hand through parent training classes and  informal talks about Compassionate Parenting. An example, is the way we look at temper tantrums. “They are recalibrating their nervous system,” she said. And, I learned that if they don’t get to do this at the typical terrific two’s stage they will need to get this done when they are 4, 5, 6 whenever… but it needs to happen. We are invited to witness and help them through this.

So it’s no surprise that during one of those moments that I was invited in…A small mantra or song came to me, in Spanish of course, “poco a poco.”

Yes, Spanish is an emotional language. It’s vowel dominant. According to the philosopher Rudolf Steiner, through the vowels we express our emotions. Try listening to opera in German and the same one in Italian and make the comparison. More on vowels next week…

Poco a Poco

Poco a poco, yo voy aprendiendo

Poco a poco, yo voy creciendo.

Gracias mama, por tu compañía

Gracias mama, por tu paciencia

Gracias mama, por todo tu amor.

 

El español es un idioma que me permite expresar diferentes emociones. Si, yo soy diferente. Soy otra persona al hablar el español. Dime si a ti te pasa lo mismo… Imagina todas las oportunidades que les presentamos a los niños exponiéndolos a esta otra dimensión… cuando los exponemos a los diferentes idiomas.

Ellos, que de por sí, viven en un mundo de emociones… Me recuerdo también de lo que nos dijo una profesora de la sicología educativa hace mucho tiempo,  Prof. Romeo. Que una vez que empezáramos a trabajar con niños seríamos invitados en un mundo de emociones. Viven en un mundo de emociones. Eres un invitado. ¿Qué vas hacer una vez estés en ese espacio? ¿Cómo te vas a comportar?

Escribir sobre este mundo emocional sin experiencia es una cosa, yo habré mencionado a varios sicólogos, y demostrado mis conocimientos sobre el tema que estaría en una prueba la semana siguiente.  Pero ahora como maestra y madre tengo experiencia que me motiva a decir lo mismo que nos dijo la profesora. Recuerda que ellos viven en un mundo de emociones. Nosotros somos los invitados. ¿Cómo vamos a reaccionar cuando estémos en este espacio. ¿Cómo nos vamos a comportar?

Otra influencia muy importante ha sido una maestra pre-escolar (y Maestra de la vida en mi opinion)  Sra. Caruso, quien nos enseñó en clases para padres y charlas sobre el concepto de padres compasivos. Un ejemplo o prueba, es como miramos las “rabietas” o “berrinches” de los pequeños. “Están estabilizando el sistema nervioso,” dijo ella. Y fui aprendiendo que si no lo hacían a los dos, lo tendrían que hacer a los 3, 4, 5 o 6 pero que es algo que tienen que experimentar. Y nosotros estamos invitados para ayudarlos en este proceso.

Una canción que me vino a la mente a cantar, en español por supuesto, cuando viví uno de esos primeros momentos fue “Poco a Poco.”

En español porque es un idioma muy expresivo donde predominan las vocales. De acuerdo al filósofo  Rudolf Steiner, es a través de las vocales que llegamos a expresar nuestras emociones. Escucha una opera en alemán y después en italiano, y haz la comparación. Hablaremos mas sobre las vocales la semana que viene…

 

Subscríbase ahora y podrá recibir los avisos de nuevos artículos, canciones y recursos para enseñarles a sus hijos español. Las opiniones en esta página son simplemente una perspectiva de la Sra. Constancia. Compartiendo con otras madres y padres un deseo de ayudar en el desarollo de nuestros hijos y crear una comunidad que los ayude a progresar en sus estudios y expresiones culturales en español. Eso es todo.  Colorín Colorado… este cuento se ha terminado.

Subscribe now and receive notifications regarding new upcoming articles, songs and resources to assist you in your efforts to teach your kids Spanish.The opinions in this page are simply coming from the perspective of Prof. Constancia. I am sharing with other mothers and fathers with the intention of helping our children in their development, creating a community that will help all of them progress in their Spanish studies and cultural expression. That’s it. This tale is all told out.

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