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La Madre Goose: Nursery Rhymes for Los Niños

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Classic favorites get a modern Latino twist

The itsy arañita
climbed up the water spout.
Down came la lluvia
and washed la araña out.
Classic Mother Goose rhymes get a Latino twist in this cozy collection. From young Juan Ramón sitting in el rincón to three little gatitos who lost their mitoncitos , readers will be delighted to see familiar characters in vibrant, luminous scenes brimming with fanciful details.
La Madre Goose will make a playful multicultural addition to every modern bookshelf.

32 pages, Hardcover

Published July 19, 2016

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About the author

Susan Middleton Elya

29 books34 followers
Susan Middleton Elya is the author of many books that cleverly incorporate Spanish vocabulary into lively verse. She is originally from Iowa and now lives in Northern California.

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5 stars
76 (34%)
4 stars
96 (43%)
3 stars
41 (18%)
2 stars
7 (3%)
1 star
1 (<1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 42 reviews
Profile Image for Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance.
5,736 reviews279 followers
February 3, 2019
Take the best nursery rhymes of my childhood and add some wonderful Spanish and you have a fantastic book for our bilingual kiddos. Talk about fun! The author managed to keep the feeling of the original rhymes and yet add a side order of Spanish culture. Perfect.
Profile Image for Laura Harrison.
975 reviews111 followers
July 17, 2016
This is one of the most fun, glorious bilingual picture books I have ever read/seen. I love the rhyming text and adore the illustrations. If you are not familiar with the illustrator you soon will be. She is magnificent. A must have nursery rhymes book.
Profile Image for Kathryn.
4,140 reviews
September 14, 2021
I really enjoyed this. It incorporates Spanish words into traditional English nursery rhymes. We are just starting to learn some Spanish as a family, and sharing this with my children was a fun way for them to become more familiar with Spanish words because they already know the nursery rhymes so it's fairly easy to guess what the Spanish words mean (for example, Three Little Gatitos who have lost their mitoncitos). Also, there's a glossary with pronunciation guide at the front. The illustrations are delightful -- warm, whimsical and expressive. I would recommend this, however, with the caveat that I am no expert when it comes to Spanish/English translations and I did see a review by Sujei Lugo of Boston Public Library who says, "Elya presents the familiar rhymes with a twist, following her usual formula of interlingual rhyming text. The Spanish words are presented in bold and italics, and the sentence construction follows an unnatural form of code-switching that doesn't speak to the authenticity of bilingual and Spanish-speaking readers" and, while still giving it a somewhat favorable review overall, recommends Mama Goose: A Latino Nursery Treasury as "a more successful Latino parallel of Mother Goose nursery rhyme" and I've seen a few other reviewers express frustration with the "Spanglish" presented in La Madre Goose.
Profile Image for Stephanie Tournas.
1,990 reviews15 followers
August 27, 2016
Classic Mother Goose nursery rhymes are re-imagined, with Spanish words sprinkled throughout. The artwork, acrylics with colored pencils and graphite on handmade textured paper, is rendered in warm pleasing colors, with plump, rosy-cheeked, multi-ethnic tots and animals animating the rhymes, and really makes the book. Reminiscent of the children's books illustrations of the 1960's by Joan Walsh Anglund. Families looking to add Spanish to their small child's vocabulary will enjoy this. Spanish words are in bold. Includes a glossary.

Occasional awkward combinations of traditional English rhyme and Spanish words, such as "Baa, baa, black oveja, have you any lana?/Sí, sir, sí, sir, three bags llenas."
Profile Image for Christina Carter.
242 reviews31 followers
November 11, 2019
I absolutely adored this book! I saw it on display during the School Librarian's Association of WNY's Fall Sharing event (October 2019). It was one of the many incredible titles that the Monkey See, Monkey Do Bookstore brought to the event for us to browse. I spotted Juana Martinez-Neal's illustrations from across the room and made a beeline to get a closer look at this beauty. Her art is tenderhearted, soft and warm, and joy-inducing, all in one stroke. Combined with Susan Middleton Elya's seamless integration of Spanish and English text into marvelous verse that features timeless characters, the two have created a new classic in La Madre Goose: Nursery Rhymes for Los Niños that can be enjoyed by all readers.

If you are looking for a book to gift at the next baby shower you attend, this is one to consider. It is also the sort of book that my Spanish language learners are going to love. Many of my students participate in Spanish club and this book is filled with rich Spanish vocabulary. The glossary will help in their efforts to learn another language. I am thrilled to add this book to our K-5 collection for our students and families to enjoy for years to come.
Profile Image for Margaret.
2,486 reviews
August 10, 2016
Nursery rhymes with their short phrases and spirited cadences become part of a child's language and literature foundation sometimes before they are even born. The reading, reciting and singing of these poetic pieces span generations. All you need to do is begin one of the more popular titles and everyone, regardless of their age, will join in.

Many nursery rhymes are a reflection of the culture and historical time period in which they originated. One of the better known collections of nursery rhymes are those bearing the name of Mother Goose. La Madre Goose: Nursery Rhymes for Los Ninos (G. P. Putnam's Sons, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC, July 19, 2016) written by Susan Middleton Elya with illustrations by Juana Martinez-Neal is a charming bilingual blend and interpretation of eighteen of those poems.

My full recommendation: http://librariansquest.blogspot.com/2...
Profile Image for Iowa City Public Library.
703 reviews70 followers
April 12, 2017
From Casey: "Madre Goose by Susan Middleton Elya and illustrated by Juana Martinez-Neal, has become my new favorite picture book for February.

Elya is famous for intermixing Spanish and English within her stories in a way that incorporates rhythm and rhyme. Her updates to traditional Mother Goose rhymes are no exception in this collection.

The poems and classic rhymes presented here seamlessly flow from Spanish to English and back again making it a lovely read aloud for any family. Martinez-Neal’s warm illustrations help show those not as familiar with the Spanish vocabulary what the slight changes to the rhymes are. The glossary directly following the title page also helps to make this accessible for multi or single language homes.

Children and parents familiar with classic Mother Goose will be certain to enjoy the twists and turns that this bilingual title takes."
Profile Image for Teresa Edmunds.
618 reviews5 followers
July 29, 2016
I gave this book top stars, not because the rhymes are anything new, but because of the fun way Elya combines Spanish and English in the rhymes. Elya replaces the main English words of familiar nursery rhymes for the Spanish words. For example, "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" becomes "The Itsy Aranita". Most of the rhymes stay basically the same as the English original, with a few exceptions. At the front of the book there is a helpful glossary to aid those new to Spanish and those who may speak Spanish but are new to reading it. Martinez-Neal's illustrations are superb and add to the delight of the book.
Profile Image for Lynn.
2,858 reviews12 followers
October 17, 2016
Most of the rhymes seem to work (but I don't speak Spanish). The words in Spanish seem to be carefully chosen so even us non-Spanish-speaking folks can infer their meaning - especially if we have a background of nursery rhymes.
Soft illustrations done with acrylics, colored pencils and graphite on handmade paper (I'ld love to see the process the author used!). Soft lines and edges are almost blurred, but facial details are more precise.
Glossary and pronunciation guide are helpful, but most of the words used can be figured out by the context.
My second-grade granddaughter takes Spanish and I look forward to sharing this with her!
Profile Image for Linda .
3,613 reviews39 followers
February 16, 2017
"Twinkle, twinkle, small estrella,/how I wonder why you're bella." Recognize it? There is a glossary with translations and pronunciations at the beginning of the book to help. I suspect ESL children will love this, as will only English speakers just beginning to learn Spanish. It's the prettiest book, with the cutest children and animals filling up the pages while acting out the familiar nursery rhymes.
Profile Image for Bethe.
5,789 reviews51 followers
January 8, 2019
A little disappointed in this one - it has great potential but doesn't quite fulfill. Most, if not all, of the nursery rhymes are the traditional English versions with a few Spanish words substituted in, resulting in uneven rhymes or sounding gimmicky. Illustrations are charming - love the one on the last page.
Profile Image for Jillian Heise.
2,270 reviews474 followers
May 21, 2016
Whimsical, charming, enchanting. Delightful bilingual nursery rhymes paired w/gorgeous illustrations. Adore the intermixed Spanish & English of familiar nursery rhymes. Appreciate the glossary at the start. This is an illustrator to watch for sure - can't wait to see more from her!
Profile Image for James P.
115 reviews1 follower
April 1, 2017
Love, love, love this book. I want to own it one day. Some rhymes are definitely an improvement on the original. I much prefer "Peter, Peter Calabaza" over "Peter, Peter pumpkin-eater," for example, and María had a little Oveja over Mary had a little lamb.
October 31, 2017
This book is filled with nursery rhymes. It has very detailed illustrations. It is also really nice because the author used both english and spanish in the text. It helps everyone feel included. It also has a glossary if you are trying to learn spanish.
Profile Image for Edward Sullivan.
Author 4 books201 followers
July 3, 2016
Mixing the English and Spanish make some of the rhymes clunky but the Latino twist is fun and this is great for introducing Spanish to children already familiar with the rhymes.
Profile Image for Jacki.
1,132 reviews47 followers
February 1, 2017
Some of the scansion doesn't quite work, but the art is lovely. Wonderful book for the most part.
Profile Image for Sean.
362 reviews11 followers
March 1, 2017
Love love love this book. What a cute and funny way to do nursery rhymes with a bilingual flare. I know my teachers will love this book!
Profile Image for Dana.
2,409 reviews
March 22, 2017
Beautiful illustrations adorn this nursery rhyme book that has a few key Spanish words included in bold print in each rhyme. The rhymes are altered to fit with the language.
58 reviews
May 21, 2017
This is a book with a bunch of childrens stories but put into spanish. Most of the world are english except for the last word in each sentence. Very cute
Profile Image for Stephanie Sapp.
709 reviews22 followers
June 13, 2017
Enjoyed reading this with my 8 year old. Glossary was great for looking up pronunciation and meanings of Spanish words.
Profile Image for Angela.
269 reviews5 followers
June 28, 2018
La Madre Goose features English nursery rhymes with Spanish sprinkled throughout. Generally, if you know the English word, you're able to figure out what the Spanish word is. However, sometimes the Spanish is a different word so that it rhymes with another Spanish word. I like the pairing of the traditional English language nursery rhymes with words native Spanish speaking children will find familiar.

The overall effect is delightful and will really appeal to both native and non-native English speakers.
February 11, 2019
This book is a bilingual book as it provides Spanish nursery rhymes for babies and toddlers. During the beginning of the book there is a translation glossary of the Spanish words and the English meaning next to it. Some of the stories in the book are the "The Itsy Aranita" and "This Little Cerdo Went to Market". I found the stories and rhymes to be very sweet and detailed in description. This book is perfect for children learning Spanish and Spanish culture.
Profile Image for Katie.
762 reviews
April 13, 2018
This is on the 2x2 list and I am excited to share with my students to celebrate poetry month (we are trying to squeeze as many of the 20 2x2's in before the end of the year). I think they will love the intermixing of English and Spanish words.
Profile Image for Cherise.
114 reviews4 followers
October 6, 2018
Stunning artwork. The updated nursery rhymes are in English with Spanish words throughout. Includes a Spanish glossary.
Profile Image for emyrose8.
3,409 reviews15 followers
February 7, 2019
Cute! Great way to learn a few Spanish words with familiar nursery rhymes.
Profile Image for Mary Jo.
22 reviews
June 14, 2021
In La Madre Goose: Nursery Rhymes for Los Niños, Elya reimagines the traditional Mother Goose rhymes to keep the same cadence and changes phrases to rhyme in Spanish. Although these are rhymes for young children, all students would enjoy this book because they can learn Spanish words and make some connections to poems they have heard before. The text provides translations as well.
I found this book https://www.readbrightly.com/diverse-... through a Wakelet provided by my course instructor.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 42 reviews

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