Songs: "Kids Explore Latin America"


"A Canoa" is a Brazilian children’s song about a canoe that flips over because the child we’ve chosen to lead our expedition doesn’t know how to paddle. Life lesson: do not allow a toddler to be your captain.

"Arroro Mi Niño" is a variation on a Spanish lullaby that is common throughout Latin America. Roll your “r” when you sing “Arroro,” as you would if you were singing it to put your baby to sleep.

"Bambo du Bambu" is a samba for kids from Brazil. The original is an embolada, a fast-paced, often-improvised song style popular in northeastern Brazil in which vocalists challenge each other, competing lightly based on verbal and vocal ability.

Cachumbambe” is a Cuban “see saw” song. Both the original version and ours praise “Old lady Ines,” but for making different life choices.  

Citron” is a Mexican kids' song and children’s game in which kids sit in a circle and pass stones around clockwise, trying not to mess up the pattern as the tempo gets faster. As with many kids' songs, the lyrics make no sense, but no one seems to care.

Este Torito” is a traditional Mexican song, most often performed by mariachis, about a journey to town and a stubborn bull.

La Gucamaya,” a son jarocho classic from Veracruz in Mexico, is much more than just any old Spanish song about a bird. 

 “La Llave” is a song about searching for something important, whether “the key to life,” or just your car keys.

 “La Luna” encourages us to soar like birds and imagine ourselves as the moon.

"Las Mañanitas" is one of the most beloved songs in Mexico. You may sing it in the morning. You may sing it on your birthday. You may sing it on Christmas. You may sing it just to sing.  

Los Pollitos” is a Spanish song about all the little baby chickens pecking (pio! pio!) and the heroic mother hen who protects them.

When we sing “Mayan Peace Song” we know we Mayan culture is so ancient that most – not all! – thousand year-old music from the empire has been lost. Still, melodies like this one, claimed to be a “Mayan peace song,” still exist. We strive to honor the past as we sing them.

Niño Colla” is a song about a boy from the Coya (Kolla) community of Northern Argentina who, living alone on his little ranch, sets off with his friends on a walk up into the hills.   

With “O Pião” we go to Brazil to sing about a top that spins “en la roda,” in a round space. In our version we fly and hop and swim and jump and spin and spin and spin.

Our Story May Be Sad” is a drumming song from the Garifuna people of Honduras and Belize. The original tells a tale of woe, one that we will only endure if we laugh during its telling just as hard as we cry.  

Tambobambino” is an Andean folk song is a story of a little boy from the small town of Tambobamba in Southern Peru who foolishly walks outside in the rain carrying his chrango, a little guitar-like instrument. What a foolish little boy!

Un Barco Chiquitito” is a Spanish song about a fantastic little boat that, not unlike our kids, is simply unable to stop moving.   

"Wan Boto" is originally from Suriname, which is a small country on the Caribbean coast of South America. This is a song fisherman may sing to greet an incoming boat. (“One boat is coming with just one flag.

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