Hello Baby, The Translation

In this post I decided to do Hello Baby In Spanish. This book is written by Mem Fox. Hello Baby does not have a Spanish translation so these are the books I tend to have lots of fun with. I created this video for your kiddo’s to follow along. The words are on the screen, and also posted below.

Hello Baby
Hola Bebé

Who are you?
Quien eres tú? (Notice that ‘eres’ is the second person form of to be as shown in the lessons.)
Are you a monkey with clever toes?
Eres un monito con deditos inteligentes? (Notice here that the word clever is translated as intelligent. This is the best equivalent for the word.)

Perhaps you’re a porcupine, twitching its nose.
Tal vez eres un puerco espín, quien sacude su nariz (the verb sacudir, conjugated to third person here, sacude, literally means shake)

Are you an eagle, exploring the skies?
Eres águila, quien explora el cielo? (This could also be translated as ‘los cielos’)

Perhaps you’re a gecko with rolling eyes.
Tal vez eres un geco quien pone sus ojos en blanco.

Are you a lion with dust on its paws?
Eres un león con polvo en sus patas?

Perhaps you’re a hippo with yawning jaws.
Tal vez eres un hipopótamo con mandíbulas que bostezan (In Spanish, you do not typically describe nouns with words that end in -ing, instead you say the noun + que then add the verb conjugated correctly.)

Are you a leopard, dozing at dusk?
Eres un leopardo quien duerme en la madrugada?

Perhaps you’re an elephant, wielding its tusk.
Tal vez eres un elefante, que empuña su colmillo

Are you a warthog, hilarious and hairy?
Eres un jabalí, divertidíssimo y peludo? (There are different ways to translate hilarious, divertidissimo literally means lots and lots and lots of fun. Another way to translate hilarious would be chistoso.)

Perhaps you’re a crocodile, silent and scary.
Tal vez eres un cocodrilo, silencioso que da miedo. (In Spanish, you can’t really say ‘scary.’ Instead fear is something you have, are given, or that you give. So, in this case, I indicate that perhaps the crocodile gives fear.)

Are you a zebra, sipping a drink?
Eres zebra, dando un sorbo de su bebida? (Note: The most commonly used word for drink in Mexican Spanish is tomar. So, Toma tu jugo would be, drink your juice.)

Perhaps you’re an owl with a wicked wink.
Tal vez eres lechucita con un guiño maravilloso. Note: I did not translate the word wicked literally because it can be misinterpreted.

No?

Then who are you, baby? Wait, let me guess
Pues quien eres tú bebe?, Espera, dejame adivinar

Are you my treasure?
Eres mi tesoro?

The answer is yes.
La respuesta es sí.

Hello Baby, although it does not have a Spanish English translation, is a true treasure of a book. The pages are full of vivid animal pictures that your child will enjoy. The book is not too long, in fact, perfect for a young toddler or even a baby. This translation is also great for a person of any age who is trying to learn Spanish, as the words in this post will help to build your vocabulary.

Hello Baby’s author Mem Fox has lots of exciting books, including Animals Should Definitely Not Wear Clothing, and Sleepy Head. You can actuallly meet the autho rand illustrator, plus see activities fo rthis book at Kids.SimonandSchuster.com.

This is a board book, so it is perfect for babies who can’t manage pages with paper. The book is full of zoo animals like a monkey, porcupine, eagle, gecko, lion, hippo, leopard, elephant, warthog, crocodile, zebra, and owl. The awesome thing is that at the end, all of the animals are put together on one page and this ends up being a love story between parent and child.

For any book where there is no official Spanish translation, all you have to do is request it on Bilingual StoryTime and I will post it. That way, you can follow along with the book and text to help you and your child learn Spanish.

When reading along, whether alone or with your child, pay attention to the verb changes and how they agree with the quantity of the noun in the sentence.

For example, when speaking of the porcupine who twitches his nose, note, we are speaking of one porcupine, so literally:

The porcupine twitches its nose.
El puerco espin sacude su nariz.

Again, words that -ing cannot describe nouns in Spanish. This would be incorrect usage of Spanish language. So instead, the sentence has to be reworded to make sense.


Note:

Maybe you are an elephant, wielding its tusk.
Tal vez eres un elefante, que empuña su nariz.

In this sentence, I translate wielding as que + empuñar
There are other words for wield in Spanish, but in this case, empuñar is the closest equivalent.

Taking special note of the details I include will also be very helpful to you in learning Spanish. There are lots of things that change when a translation is written, and this is one of the most valuable lessons you will learn when learning a new language. You should NEVER assume a direct translation. There are lots of phrases that must be reworded in order for them to make sense in another language.

Think to yourself, would every language be thought out the same way? No! Some languages are very backwards from English, if not most. In addition, there are many phrases that are expressed differently. For example, in Spanish, you are not hungry, you have hunger. Hence, yo tengo hambre. Tener is to have, and tengo means I have.

This is why story time is so very helpful! Short stories help you see language written in context, and you learn so much more when it is written side by side with English. You see how things are reworded, and this helps to expand your thinking. This also helps to expand you as a translator of Spanish. To be an efficient translator, you need to be able to think outside the box!

If you have any comments, suggestions, or questions, please feel free to leave a comment below. I respond very quickly and am happy to hear from you. You may also message me on my Facebook page.

Did you enjoy this video? Be the first to see more!

* indicates required


Please follow and like us:

7 Comment

  1. I appreciate you taking the time to offer these translations for children’s books. There are tons of books out there that are only produced in one language and never make it across cultures.

    As a psychology student I have learned a lot about kids learning new languages. I know that it is extremely difficult to learn a new language once you have entered puberty.

    But if you are learning a new language as a baby it is not so much learning a new language as it is learning two first languages.

    I think that you translating stories like this allow for parents to help kids learn multiple languages much easier at a young age. What do you think?

    1. Thank you for commenting. I definitely think that parents who want to encourage Spanish and English should get their kids on these videos. I am glad that you find them resourceful!

  2. Hey there, this is an awesome idea to translate it to Spanish, although it is a children’s book, I am in the beginning process of learning Spanish myself so it was a joy to read, I am sure I read half of the words wrong in Spanish but it is a great idea. I’ll let my girlfriend know about it since her nephews are also trying to learn Spanish as well.

    1. I appreciate the referral! Thank you so much for visiting! There are some articles on learning Spanish here as well, see the YouTube Free Spanish Lessons link. Join the mailing list as I will be adding in new articles frequently.

  3. Wow! I love what you did here and I am so moved by your site. This is perfect for not only toddlers but older people wanting to speak another language as well. If I think about it, how I learned to speak English was by reading kids books like these, so learning to speak Spanish should coincidentally be the same way.

    I will defintley be coming back to your site in the future to learn more. This is very cool!

    1. Thank you Hailey I am glad you enjoyed! I just added Are You My Mother in Spanish! Please subscribe to the mailing list! Thanks again

  4. Wow! I love what you did here and I am so moved by your site. This is perfect for not only toddlers but older people wanting to speak another language as well. If I think about it, how I learned to speak English was by reading kids books like these, so learning to speak Spanish should coincidentally be the same way.

    I will defintley be coming back to your site in the future to learn more. This is very cool!

Leave a Reply