This is a fun story for talking about zoo/wild animals and about family vocabuary.
I usually tell this story after we have learned about family members and when we are learning about where people live. I always include lots of animals in the “Where do you live?” unit because it gives the students a different set of characters to work with. I can also tie this in with science standards talking about habitats and where animals live.
When I tell the story, I introduce the whole family before I get started with Paco (the name that I give the penguin because I like the alliteration of it). After introducing the family, I make sure that all of the students stay on one side of the room and I talk about “lejos de” (far from) and “cerca de” (close to).
The script of the story is below, please feel free to use it and change in any way that works with your class. The italics are things that were decided by either me or by the students in my class through story-asking.
Paco es un pingüino. Paco es bajo, pequeño, y simpático.
Paco vive en el parque zoologico en Orlando. La familia de Paco vive en Chile.
Paco extraña a la familia. Paco está triste.
Paco escapa del parque zoologico.
Paco conoce a un caimán. Se llama Penny. Paco le dice, “Penny, necesito encontrar a mi familia!”
Penny le dice, ¡no problema! ¿Dónde vive tu familia?
Paco le responde, “La familia vive en Chile. Es muy lejos de aquí.”
Paco y Penny van al aeropuerto.
(Depending on the time you have with your students, you can add another character here to be the pilot. I also found success with having the pilot be a bird that can fly and they ride on the bird’s back to get to Chile)
Paco y Penny se suben al avión.
Paco y Penny van a Chile.
En Chile, Paco y Penny buscan la familia de Paco.
Paco ve a muchos pingüinos.
En el grupo, Paco ve a su papá, Pablo. “Hola papá!”
Paco ve a su mama, Penelope. “Hola mamá!”
Paco ve a su hermano, Pedro. “Hola Pedro!”
Paco está con la familia. Paco está feliz!
Paco is a penguin. Paco is short, small, and friendly. Paco lives in the zoo in Orlando. Paco's family lives in Chile. Paco misses the family. Paco is sad. Paco escapes from the zoo. Paco meets an alligator. Her name is Penny. Paco says, "Penny, I need
to find my family!" Penny says, "no problem! Where does your family live?" Paco replies, "The family lives in Chile, it's very far from here." Paco and Penny go to the airport. (Depending on the time you have with your students, you can add another character here to the pilot. Paco and Penny get on the plane. Paco and Penny go to Chile. In Chile, Paco and Penny look for Paco's family. Paco sees many penguins. In the group, Paco sees his dad, Pablo. "Hello Dad!" Paco sees his mom, Penelope. "Hi Mom!" Paco sees his brother, Pedro. "Hello Pedro!" Paco is with the family. Paco is happy!