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Cuentos de Animales / Animal Stories

by Elida Guardia Bonet

Children are very inquisitive and like to know about everything around them. There are many wonderful stories that explain the natural world. They may not tell us the real answers, but they do offer some fun alternatives.

Books to Share

  • Señor Cat’s Romance and Other Favorite Stories from Latin America by Lucía González.
  • Rabbit Wishes by Linda Shute.
  • El rey colibrí by Argentina Palacios.
  • El tigre y el cangrejo / The Tiger and the Crab adapted by Verónica Uribe.


La gallina Francolina

(This traditional rhyme may be found in Pin uno pin dos by Arturo Navarro.)

This rhyme is used to pick a person for a game. It is similar to "One potato, two potato…"

La gallina Francolina

puso un huevo en la cocina.

Puso uno, puso dos,

puso tres, puso cuatro,

puso cinco, puso seis,

puso siete, puso ocho,

puso un pan de bizcocho.

Francolina the Hen

Francolina, the hen

laid an egg in the kitchen.

She laid one, she laid two,

she laid three, she laid four,

she laid five, she laid six,

she laid seven, she laid eight,

she laid a good tasting cake!


Los pollitos

(This rhyme may be found in Los pollitos dicen, The Baby Chicks Sing, by Nancy Abraham Hall and Jill Syverson-Stork. You will also find the lyrics and may listen to a recording of this rhyme on the El día de los Niños / El día de los Libros web site at


(This traditional riddle may be found in Pin uno pin dos by Arturo Navarro.)

Alto, altanero,

gran caballero,

capa dorada

y un gran sombrero.

(El gallo)

Tall and arrogant,

a great lord,

with a golden cape

and a grand hat.

(The rooster)

Theatre and Puppetry

La cena de T�o Tigre y otras obras de teatro para niños by Clara Rosa Otero has four short plays about Tio Conejo, the Rabbit, that children can perform as creative drama or as puppet shows.


Tell The Owl and the Painted Bird / La lechuza y el pájaro pintado, adapted by Angel Vigil, available in the To the Library and Beyond! 2001 Texas Reading Club manual in the "Stories, Puppet Plays, and Reader’s Theater Scripts" chapter.

Tell a story from the audiocassette, Rabbit Tales / Los cuentos de Tío Conejo by Elida Guardia Bonet, which has three stories about Tío Conejo, the Rabbit. Side A is in English; side B is in Spanish.

Tell "How the Armadillo Got Its Armor" in When Jaguars Ate the Moon and Other Stories About Animals and Plants of the Americas by María Cristina Brusca and Tona Wilson.

"El vaquero al que no le gustaba la noche / The Cowboy Who Did Not Like the Night" adapted by Elida Guardia Bonet, and in To the Library and Beyond! 2001 Texas Reading Club manual. This story is based on the book, La noche de las estrellas by Douglass Gutierrez and Maria Fernanda Oliver.

Reader’s Theater

Let the children read Talkative Tortoise: A Guatemalan Folktale. The script is on pages 163 and 164 of Multicultural Folktales for the Feltboard and Reader’s Theater by Judy Sierra.


Medio pollito / Little Half Chick



Use the pattern here to make a medio pollito. Give each child two copies of the pattern. The children color both patterns and glue feathers onto only one of them. They then glue both sides together and insert a craft stick between the two pieces of paper to represent one leg.


Invite a storyteller to tell pourquoi stories.

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Page last modified: March 2, 2011