Kids learn best when they are having fun. I have found that my toddler is most excited to learn Gujarati when I associate the letters with fun activities or stories. That’s why each week we feature a Gujarati letter of the week, where we share activities and stories that are based on that letter. This week’s letter is બ.
Creating Corner: First up is બ for બતક (batak, duck)!
What better way to learn about બ than by making a બતક that actually moves! The instructions for this project are a little lengthy (but still simple). Check them out at this blog:
Next up is બ for બસ (bus).
Buses are good for more than just transportation. This is a fun activity to practice saying the letter બ while also learning shapes!
1. Use construction paper to create a bus (as pictured to the left).
2. Discuss all the different shapes you can find on this bus, including rectangles, squares, and circles.
** Make sure you keep this bus handy for when you sing "Wheels on the Bus" in the Sing-A-Long section!
Last but not least is બ for બિલાડી (biladi, cat)!
Grab a brown paper bag.
Paint the bag whichever color you want your cat to be (we chose orange). The base of the bag will be your cat's face, and the rest of the bag will be your cat's body.
Glue on some googly eyes (or draw on some regular eyes) to your cat's face.
Cut out 2 large triangles and two small triangles. These will be your cat's ears. Glue them onto the face.
Use pipe cleaners and pom-poms to make a nose and whiskers (or draw these on).
Cut out on oval shaped piece of paper. This will be your cat's belly. Glue it onto the center of the bag.
Glue on a short tail to the bottom of the bag.
Put on a puppet show! You can also use this puppet when you sing about cats in the sing-a-long section below!
**For more detailed instructions, check you this blog:
First up, in honor of the letter બ, let's learn about બચ્ચાં (bacchaa, kids)!
In particular, lets learn about પ્રાણી ના બચ્ચાં (praani naa bacchaa, kids of animals).
Go onto the main VedInk website and download the "Gujarati Animals" and "Gujarati Shapes" worksheets where you will find matching games, puzzles, and tracing sheets that can help your kid learn more about animals and their kids!
Now it's time for a scavenger hunt!
Write down this list of things that start with બ. Then, see if you and your kid can find these things around your house. If you can, circle the word. If you can't, cross it out.
બારી (baari, window)
બારણું (baaranu, door)
બગીચો (bagicho, garden)
બેઠક ખંડ (betak khand, sitting room)
બરણી (barani, jar)
બાજરી લોટ (bajari lot, millet flour)
બટાકા (bataakaa, potatoes)
બતક (batak, duck)
બાંસુરી (baansuri, flute)
બા (baa, mother)
બહેન (bahen, sister)
બદામ (badaam, almond)
બટવો (batavo, purse)
બરફ (baraf, ice)
બંગડી (bangadi, bangles)
બત્તી (batti, lamp)
બાળકો (baalako, kids)
Last, but not least, it's time for બરણી ની અંદર અને બહાર (barani ni andar ane bahaar, inside and outside the jar).
All you need for this is a jar and some household objects that start with બ. Tell your kid to put a certain number of each object inside the jar. This way, they can practice saying બ and also practice counting. Below is the list of household objects we used. But, you can switch this up depending on what you have around your home.
બક્કલ (bakkal, hair buckles)
બોલ પેન (ball pen)
બદામ (badaam, almond)
બંગડી (bangadi, bangles)
બુટી (butti, earrings)
Storytime: My kid LOVES stories. I have found that relating Gujarati letters to specific stories helps her associate the letter with more words and helps her practice saying the letter out loud. For the letter બ share the story of બતક અને હંસ (the duck and the swan/ the ugly duckling). You can read this story (and more) under the “Gujarati stories” tab on our website.
Character/Quality Corner: While learning letters is super important, learning character is even more important. So why not do both simultaneously? Associating letters with characters and qualities helps pique my kid’s interest in great historical figures while also allowing her to practice saying the letter out loud. Characters:
બજરંગબલી (Bajarangbali, Hanuman)
બુદ્ધિશાળી (buddhishaali, intelligent)
બહાદુર (bahaadur, valiant)
Sing-A-Long: The best way to learn a letter is to sing it! For the letter બ, check out the following songs!
"me aek bilaadi paadi che": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XM8WEKby2Rs
"aek bilaadi jaadi, tene peri sari": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xLzXfa4rTY
"5 ducks" (this is in Hindi): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4NUFhSHAtPA
"Wheels on the Bus" (this is in Gujarati): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1YTltR2y2S4
"ba pela bagma dodi dodi jau": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87QF5mhOnec
"ba mane chapti vagadta avdi gai": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqtzw--_W48
** You can find the translated and transliterated lyrics to "aek bilaadi jaadi" on the "Let's Learn About ત!" blog.
Word Salad: The best way to learn another language is to hear as many words as possible. Here are just a few extra words to practice during the week that start with બ!
બ for બકરી (bakri, goat)
બ for બગલો (baglo, heron)
બ for બંગલો (bangalow)
બ for બાધા (baadaa, obstacle)
બ for બદામી (badaami, color brown)
બ for બે ( be, 2)
બ for બોલવાનું (bolvaanu, to speak)
બ for બેસવાનું (besvaanu, to sit)
બ for બતાવાનું (bataavaanu, to show)
બ for બનાવાનું (banaavaanu, to create)
બ for બધા (badaa, all)
બ for બંધન (bandan, bond)
Question of the Week:
Take a break from learning about બ and stretch your mind with the question of the week!
Q: How do બીજ (beej, seeds) grow into plants?
A: Seeds contain embryos, or groups of cells that are sitting around and waiting to become a plant. Just like you need food and water to grow, seeds needs food (in the form of soil and sunlight) and water to grow as well. By planting a seed in soil and watering it, you are giving those tiny cells everything they need to grow into a big plant.
Check out this fun blog that teaches you how to show your kid this process firsthand: