YA Challege Opened to Include Tweens

We’ve heard you! We’ve had emails asking if we would consider opening up our teen challenge to include younger children, so the L4LL YA Challenge is now being expanded to allow tweens to also participate. We realize that kids ages 9 to 12 are consuming technology at a accelerating rate, including in their schools and at home. Many parents are using tablets and computer software to help their children become tech literate and to help them learn specific concepts that the kids are struggling with at school.

The L4LL YA Challenge

Kids ages 9 to 18 are still challenged to read 8 books this summer, AND we want them to also present a video book report on a piece of Latino (children’s) literature that they’ve read. This book may be one of the 8 books they’ve read for the program, and may or may not be found on our reading list for young adults.

The families of participants in this age range who submit a list of the 8 books they’ve read over the summer, as well as a video book report about a piece of Latino (children’s) lit that they’ve read, will be entered to win one of 10 Chromebooks and 10 Nexus 7 tablets donated by our sponsor, Google. The video book report will be archived in the L4LL YouTube channel.

For a complete description of the YA Challenge Rules, click on the link below.

YA Challenge Resources

Video of the Week: Mother/Daughter Authors Pat Mora and Libby Martinez

We have been so blessed to have so much support for the Latino Children’s Summer Reading Program. And we are especially thankful to the authors who have taken the time to create special messages just for our participating families. A few weeks ago, we showed you author Lulu Delacre’s lovely video. This week we have a another great message for you from mother/daughter authors, Pat Mora and Libby Martinez. Pat has done tremendous work for children’s literacy as the founder of Día de los Niños, Día de los Libros. In addition to the many books she has written for children and adults, she has also written two books with her daughter, Libby. Together they explain why reading and parents are critical for the development of children’s literacy skills.

Raising a Biliterate Child: Set a Good Example

photo courtesy L. C. Ladish

The following is a guest post by Dr. Carlos Ulloa.

Model, Model, Model

What do I mean by model? You are your child’s first teacher and what you say and do will highly influence your child’s bilingual and biliterate self image. Your example and how you approach the world will help carry your child through his or her life. What you do will be imitated. What you say will be repeated, shared, minced and eventually outlast you.

Nurture your child’s two languages and vocabulary by embracing your cultural roots and passing on your favorite dichos y refranes. Those oral proverbs, phrases and saying you have heard your parents, abuelo, abuela, tíos and tías use while growing up are rich with not only wisdom, they cross generations and cultures. Those words carry meaning and will stimulate your child’s thinking and oral language development in two languages.

Children love to learn new words when they are used in the context of a lively conversation. Dichos y refranes also make for an engaging conversation during those transition times during the day; such as commuting, grocery shopping, cooking or getting ready for bed. Talk to your child about the message in your favorite dichos y refranes. Ask him or her what the message in the phrase is trying to convey. Together you can come up with examples to reference the dicho or refran to give the phrase life or find a comparative phrase or saying in your child’s second language. Each time you introduce new words in Spanish or English, you are building knowledge, stimulating connections in the brain and reaffirming how words can get you thinking and wondering in two languages.

Begin writing down those favorite dichos y refranes that personally influence what you most value. Record your thoughts, your child’s thoughts, your parent’s thoughts, your abuelito and abuelita’s thoughts on those favorite dichos y refranes. If you want to get extra creative, begin creating, sculpting or collecting photos to pair with your recorded dichos y refranes.

Although most dichos y refranes can be literally translated, your child will learn that sometimes words get lost in translation or the words just don’t flow so poetically in the other language. Sometimes when translated into English or Spanish you will need less or more words to express your meaning. Your child will learn to appreciate the beauty of two languages through dichos y refranes.

What words do you want your child to own and live by? You may be inclined to go to the web and look up what other people have to say about dichos y refranes. You can go there but if you listen to your own words and reflect on the wisdom passed on to you, those dichos y refranes will come to you. Think about the words you really want to pass on to your own child and you may just hear your mother, father, abuelita or abuelito’s voice in your mind.


Dr. Ulloa y su Tía Chepa

Dr. Ulloa grew up speaking Spanish with his mother and English with his father. He is currently the principal of a dual immersion school in Petaluma, California. Dr. Ulloa has over 22 years of experience as a director of curriculum and instruction, elementary teacher, Descubriendo la Lectura/Reading Recovery teacher and parent involvement specialist. He currently serves as a commissioner on the Instructional Quality Commission (IQC), an advisory board to the California State Board of Education. Ulloa earned his bachelors at San Diego State University in Liberal Studies with a Spanish Bilingual Emphasis, masters degree in Education from Harvard University and doctorate in Educational Leadership at the University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Ulloa can be contacted at CarlosUlloaJr@gmail.com

The Latino Children’s Summer Reading Program Prize Incentives

We’ve had a whole lot of great prize incentives come together over the last month for the different reading groups of registered participants in our Latino Children’s Summer Reading Program! So to help organize them all in one place for you to reference, we’ve listed them below. We’ll be sure to update this page with any changes or additions, so check back regularly!

Important Reminders:

  • Registration CLOSES on July 14th.
  • Submission forms will be posted on this site on August 1st.

Reading Group: 0 to 4 years old
The first 5 families to complete the summer reading program and submit the titles of 8 books they’ve read to their children will receive a 1-year membership to Monarca Language to help prepare their children for starting kindergarten. Read more here.

Reading Group: 4 to 8 years old

The first 100 families to complete the summer reading program and submit the titles of 8 books their child has read over the summer will receive a backpack filled with school supplies to help them with the expenses associated with the beginning of the school year.

Reading Group: 9 to 18 years old

The families of participants in this age range who submit a list of the 8 books they’ve read over the summer, as well as a video book report about a piece of Latino (children’s) lit that they’ve read, will be entered to win one of 10 Chromebooks and 10 Nexus 7 tablets donated by our sponsor, Google. Read more here.

** INTERNATIONAL FAMILIES are eligible to win a Monarca Language membership. International families with children in the older age groups are not eligible to win the school supplies, Chromebooks, or Nexus tablets. However, if you are one of the first 100 families to complete the program, then you will be eligible to receive a $25 gift card to Amazon.com.