Teach Spanish Months of the Year: May in Spanish
El mes de mayo, or May in Spanish, is the fifth month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars. May has 31 days and is practically the last spring month in the northern hemisphere, as well as the last of fall in the southern hemisphere.
There are several theories on the origin of the name of the month of May. The first one states that May is a derivation of the name of the Roman goddess “Maia,” also known as “Bona Dea.” Others say that the name comes from the deity “Maya,” daughter of Atlas and Pleione. The last theory of where the name could come from is from the term “Maius Jupiter.”
May is a month full of interesting celebrations and commemorations. Also, during this month, in several countries, including Canada and the United States the school cycle ends and summer vacations begin! So, let’s learn about this interesting month and what to do during it.
Celebrations During May in Spanish
May has important celebrations and commemorations all around the world, but to learn more about May in Spanish, this article centers around those celebrations that are important in Latin America and Spain.
Día de la Madre
The celebration of el Día de la Madre or Mother’s Day, is one that takes place during the month of May throughout almost all the American continent and Spain.
Mother’s Day, as the name expresses, celebrates mothers and motherly figures. Its origin goes back to Ancient Greek, where the goddess Rea was celebrated. Centuries later, the celebration changed to honor Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus. But the celebration evolved again, and now Mother’s Day is a popular celebration of mothers.
In some countries in Latin America and Spain el Día de la Madre is celebrated on different dates:
- In Spain, it’s celebrated on the first Sunday of May.
- In Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Ecuador, Honduras, Puerto Rico, Uruguay and Venezuela el Día de la Madre is celebrated on the second Sunday of May.
- In Guatemala, El Salvador and Mexico, Mother’s Day is celebrated on May 10.
- In Paraguay, el Día de la Madre is May 15.
- In Honduras, Mother’s Day celebration takes place on May 30.
- Haití and Dominican Republic celebrate Mother’s Day on May’s last Sunday.
Here is a small vocabulary about to talk about el Día de las Madres:
|Día de las Madres||Mother’s Day|
|Arreglos Florales||Flower arrangements|
|Figura materna||Maternal figure|
|Mamá biológica||Biological mother|
|Mamá adoptiva||Adoptive mother|
|Amar incondicionalmente||To love unconditionally|
Día de los Trabajadores
Known as Labor Day in English and officially as Día internacional de los trabajadores (International workers day) this significant date has been celebrated every May 1st since 1889.
In most countries that celebrate el Día de los Trabajadores on May 1st considered the date as a public holiday, and while some people like to rest that day, other movements use the day off to fight for better working opportunities and regulations.
When you talk about May in Spanish, el Día de los Trabajadores is a date you can’t ignore, so here are some vocabulary words to talk about it
|El trabajador/ La trabajadora||Worker|
|El jefe/ la jefa||Boss|
|El salario mínimo||Minimum wage|
|El feriado nacional||National holiday|
|Los beneficios para los trabajadores.||Benefits for the workers.|
|Condiciones dignas de trabajo.||Decent work conditions.|
Día mundial de las Abejas
El día mundial de las abejas, known as World Bee day in English, is a curious celebration that takes place during May.
Anton Janša, the pioneer of beekeeping—also known as apiculture—was born on May 20, 1734. Janša worked as a beekeeper for the Royalty of Austria and traveled all over the land to teach and discuss with others about apiculture. Because of his knowledge of bees and his techniques on beekeeping, he is considered the father of modern apiculture.
In 2017, the United Nations (UN) choosed May 20 as the date to commemorate bees and their importance to ecosystems and nature, and to create awareness for them to be preserved and protected.
From now on, when you talk or teach about May in Spanish, you can talk about this commemoration, so here are some vocabulary Spanish words so you can do it perfectly!
|La apicultura||Apiculture/ beekeeping|
|El/La apiculturista||Apiculturist/ beekeeper|
|La abeja reina||Queen bee|
|La abeja trabajadora||Worker bee|
|El extractor de miel||Honey extract|
|Extraer la miel||To extract honey|
|La jalea real||Royal jelly|
Mes de la Herencia de Asia y del Pacífico
The Asian/Pacific American Heritage month, mes de la herencia de Asia y el Pacifico in Spanish, is a commemoration that takes place during May and is a period that is used to recognize the contributions and influence of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders Americans to the history, culture and achievements in the United States.
Even if this is considered a celebration of the United States, it has slowly spread through the rest of the American Continent. It has been commemorated since 1978, first during the first 10 days of May, but in 1990, that changed to a month-long commemoration.
May was chosen to be the Asian/Pacific heritage month because two reasons:
- The first Japanese immigrant got to the United States on May 7, 1843
- On May 10, 1869, the golden spike of the First Transcontinental Railroad was driven in the railroad, which was completed using Chinese labor.
Here is some Spanish vocabulary words that you can use when teaching about The Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month when talking about May in Spanish:
|Islas del Pacífico||Pacific Islands|
|Asia Central||Central Asia|
|Asia Occidental||Western Asia|
|Asia Oriental||Eastern Asia|
|Asia Meridional||Southern Asia|
|Suroeste Asiatico||Southwest Asia|
Activities to Do During May
May is a month with good weather, a lot of celebrations and in some places, even vacations! So what can you do during May or to learn more about May in Spanish? Here is a list of activities that are so entertaining you won’t want to do them alone!
1. Learn a Mother’s Day poem
Who doesn’t like to give their mom a good gift? Show them how much you love them by learning these two simple and short poems in Spanish!
Poem #1: Mi Mamá (My Mom)
Todas las mañanas
sueño al despertar
que del cielo un ángel
me viene a besar.
Al abrir los ojos,
miro donde está
y en el mismo sitio
veo a mi mamá.
I dream when I wake up
That from heaven an angel
Come to kiss me.
When my eyes open
I see where they are
And in the same place
I see my mom.
Poem # 2: Madre (Mother)
Cinco letras tiene un ángel,
que me cuidó en su vientre,
me llevó por mil caminos,
me enseñó a ser valiente.
Five letters has an angel,
That took care of me in her womb.
She took me a thousand ways,
She taught me to be brave.
2. Learn some Refranes
Refranes are popular sayings that have a little lesson or advice. Here are some that refer or talk about May:
1. Mayo entrado, un jardín en cada prado.
May advanced, a garden in every meadow.
2. Las mañanas de mayo, las mejores del año.
May mornings, best of the year.
3. Lo que mayo riega, mayo lo seca.
What May water, May dries.
4. Como agua de mayo.
Like May rain.
5. En mayo, hambre y rosas. ¡Mira que distintas cosas!
In May, hunger and roses. ¡Look at such different things!
3. Decorate your house with bees!
To celebrate World Bee Day you can do a lot of activities— like eating pancakes with honey!— but why not decorate the house with some buzzing friends? Let your creativity “bee” free and follow these instructions to turn your house into a beehive!
- Muchos globos amarillos (A lot of yellow balloons)
- Helio (Helium)
- Cuerda o listón (String or Ribbon)
- Marcadores color negro permanente (Black permanent markers)
- Papel de color azul resistente (Resistant blue colored paper)
- Primero, en el papel azul, dibuja las alas de la abeja y córtalas cuidadosamente.
First, on the blue paper, draw the bee’s wings and cut them carefully.
- Infla los globos con helio.
First, inflate the balloons with helium.
- Si no tienes helio, puedes inflar el globo de soplandolo o con un inflador manual.
If you don’t have helium, blow up the balloons.
- Con los marcadores, ¡dale vida a las abejitas! Dibuja sus ojos, sus rayas, todos los detalles que quieras ponerle!
With the markers, give life to the little bees! Draw their eyes, their stripes, all the details you want to give them!
- Pega las alas a la abeja.
Stick the wings to the bee.
- Amarra la cuerda o el listón alrededor de la abeja y ¡déjala volar! (dentro de la casa).
Tie up the string or ribbon around the bee and let it fly! (inside the house).
May the 4th be with you!
This celebration is for Star Wars fans and casual viewers, and is the best excuse to get together with friends and family to watch and enjoy some good ol’ Star Wars movies.
Read more: Star Wars in Spanish
But watching movies without something to eat? That’s a no-no. So don’t worry, here are some easy and affordable ideas to make your movie night a thematic movie party!
1. Cookie Tie-Fighters
Ingredientes — Ingredients
- Un paquete de galletas saladas hexagonales
A package of hexagonal crackers
- Queso Cheddar y Americano
Cheddar Cheese and American Cheese
- Queso Crema
- Toma una galleta y por dentro aplica en el centro de la galleta un poco de queso crema.
Take a cracker and inside of it apply a little bit of cream cheese in the middle of the cookie.
- Corta un pedazo de queso sin que sea muy grueso ni muy grande y ponlo sobre el queso crema en la galleta.
Cut a piece of the cheese, not to thick nor too big and put it over the cream cheese in the cookie.
- Toma otra galleta con queso crema en el medio y ponlo sobre el queso. ¡Listo! Ahí esta tu deliciosa Tie Fighter.
Take another cracker with cream cheese in the middle and put it over the other one with the cheese already. And done! There is your delicious Tie Fighter.
2. Frosty Bantha Milk
Ingredientes — Ingredientes
Para 3 porciones — For 3 portions
- 2 tazas de helado de vainilla (más tres bolas extra)
2 cups of vanilla ice-cream (plus 3 extra scoops)
- 1 ½ tazas de leche
1 ½ cups of milk
- 2 tazas de mezcla de bebida dulce color azul (como Kool-aid)
2 cups of sweetened blue drink mix (like Kool-aid)
- 10-12 gotas de colorante artificial comestible color azul.
10-12 drops of blue food coloring
Instrucciones — Instructions
Combina todos los ingredientes en tu licuadora y mezcla hasta que la consistencia sea suave. Dividir entre 3 vasos de no más de 8 onzas y servir una bola de helado dentro del vaso. A disfrutar!
Combine and blend all the ingredients in your blender and mix until the consistency is smooth. Divide in three, in glasses of no more than 8 ounces and serve an extra vanilla scoop in the glass. Enjoy!
Don’t Let the Year Get Away!
May is the fifth month of the year and is the perfect time to start learning and practicing your Spanish. Become part of the more than 24,000 monthly enrolled students at HSA and practice your Spanish with us. Try a free, 1-on1, Spanish class with a native Spanish speaker and begin this fun learning journey with us!
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