European Portuguese Songs for Children – European Portuguese Culture for kids

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1. Indo Eu a Caminho de Viseu

Indo eu Indo eu a Caminho de Viseu

Encontrei o meu amor ai Jesus que lá vou eu

Ora Zus Truz Truz ora Zás Trás Trás

Ora chega chega chega Ora arreda lá pa trás

Indo Eu Indo Eu a Caminho de Viseu

Escorreguei torci um pé, ai que tanto me doeu

Ora Zus Truz Truz ora Zás Trás Trás

Ora chega chega chega Ora arreda lá pa trás

Vindo eu vindo eu da cidade de Viseu

Deixei lá o meu amor o que bem me aborreceu

Ora Zus Truz Truz ora Zás Trás Trás

Ora chega chega chega Ora arreda lá pa trás

2. Alecrim Dourado

Alecrim Alecrim dourado que nasce no monte sem ser semeado

Ai meu amor quem te disse a ti que a flor do campo era o Alecrim

Alecrim Alecrim aos molhos por causa de ti choram os meus olhos

Ai meu amor quem te disse a ti que a flor do campo era o Alecrim

3. Ai Ai Ai Minha Machadinha

Ah ah ah minha machadinha

Quem te pôs a mão sabendo que és minha

Sabendo que és minha também eu sou tua

Salta machadinha pró meio da rua

Pró meio da rua não hei-de eu saltar

Eu hei-de ir à roda escolher o meu par

O meu par já eu sei quem é

É um rapazinho chamado José

Chamado José chamado João

É o rapazinho do meu curacao

4. Malhão

Oh Malhão Malhão que vida é a tua

Comer e beber oh trim tim tim passear na rua

Oh Malhão Malhão Oh malhão vem ver

As ondas do mar oh trim tim tim aonde vão ter

Oh Malhão Malhão Oh Malhão do Norte

Quando o Mar está bravo faz a onda azul

Oh Malhão Malhão Oh Malhão do Porto

Quem morreu morreu oh trim tim tim quem morreu está morto

5. A Barata diz que tem

A barata diz que tem sapatinhos de veludo

É mentira da barata o pé dela é que é peludo

Ahahah Eheheh O Pé dela é que é peludo

A barata diz que tem uma cama de marfim

É mentira da barata ela dorme é no Jardim

Ahahah Eheheh Ela dorme é no jardim

A barata diz que tem sapatinhos de fivela

É mentira da barata os sapatos não são dela

Ahahah Eheheh Os sapatos não são dela

6. Doidas andam as Galinhas

Doidas doidas doidas andam as galinhas

Para por o ovo lá no buraquinho

Raspam raspam raspam para alisar a terra

Picam picam picam para fazer o ninho

Arrebita a crista o galo vaidoso

Cocorocócó canta refilão

E todo emproado com ar majestoso

É o comandante deste batalhão

7. O Balão do João

O Balão do João sobe sobe pelo ar

Está feliz o petiz a cantarolar

Mas o vento a soprar leva o balão pelo ar

Fica então o João a choramingar

8. O meu Chapéu tem tres Bicos

O meu chapéu tem três bicos

Tem três bicos o meu chapéu

Se não tivesse três bicos

O chapéu não era meu

9. Papagaio Loiro

Papagaio Loiro de bico dourado

Leva-me esta carta ao meu namorado

Ele não é frade nem homem casado

É rapaz solteiro lindo como um cravo

10. As Pombinhas da Catrina

As pombinhas da catrina andarão de mão em mão

Foram ter à quinta nova ao Pombal de S.João

Ao Pombal de S.João à quinta da Roseirinha

Minha mãe mandou-me à fonte e eu parti a cantarinha

Oh minha mãe não me bata que eu sou muito pequenina

Bato-te pá outra vez quando fores mais crescidinha

11. Atirei o Pau ao Gato

Atirei o pau ao gato mas o gato não morreu

Mas a Chica assustou-se com o berro que o gato deu

Miau

12. Na Loja do Mestre André

Foi na loja do Mestre André que eu comprei um Pifarito

Tiro liro liro um Pifarito

Ai Olé Ai Olé Foi na loja do Mestre André

Um Pianinho – Plim Plim Plim um Pianinho

Tiro liro liro um Pifarito

Ai Olé Ai Olé Foi na loja do Mestre André

Um Tamborzinho – Tum Tum Tum um Tamborzinho

Plim Plim Plim um Pianinho

Tiro liro liro um Pifarito

Ai Olé Ai Olé Foi na loja do Mestre André

Uma Campainha – Tlim Tlim Tlim uma campainha

Tum Tum Tum um Tamborzinho

Plim Plim Plim um Pianinho

Tiro liro liro um Pifarito

Ai Olé Ai Olé Foi na loja do Mestre André

Uma Rabequinha – Chiri Biri Biri uma Rabequinha

Tlim Tlim Tlim uma campainha

Tum Tum Tum um Tamborzinho

Plim Plim Plim um Pianinho

Tiro liro liro um Pifarito

Ai Olé Ai Olé Foi na loja do Mestre André

Um Rabecão – Chiri Biri Bão um Rabecão

Chiri Biri Biri uma Rabequinha

Tlim Tlim Tlim uma campainha

Tum Tum Tum um Tamborzinho

Plim Plim Plim um Pianinho

Tiro liro liro um Pifarito

Ai Olé Ai Olé Foi na loja do Mestre André

Portuguese Travel Destinations – Portuguese Culture for kids

Portugal may seem very small for a country, but with over a thousand years of history, it has many interesting places to visit and discover the past or just enjoy the landscape. All of its major cities are quite different from each other because of the geography, climate and cultural influences in them.

The southern edge of the country is called Algarve and faces the Mediterranean Sea, making the beaches very warm. The dunes and cliffs are so beautiful, they’re filled with tourists from all over the world during the summer. The houses there are very unique, white with blue stripes in their walls and gorgeous chimneys that looks like lacework. This style comes from the Moorish occupation in the south of the country in the Middle Ages.

Near the capital, visiting Sintra means the experience of a lifetime. The Castelo da Pena (Castle of Pena) looks like a real life fairytale castle, with high towers and pastel walls. It sits atop a forested hill and overlooks Sintra and the capital of the country, Lisboa.

Lisboa, or Lisbon, is the biggest city in the country, right by the coast where the Tejo river meets the Atlantic Ocean. The city was rebuilt after an earthquake in the 1800’s so all buildings downtown were made to match, and the old, winding cobbled streets are quite charming. It’s also full of cultural exhibits and museums, like the Antique Art Museum with many paintings you might have seen in books already, monasteries and monuments to discovery to admire and explore.

In the center of the country, there’s something very unique. Near Coimbra, a city built around its University, there are the ruins of a roman city called Conimbriga. They’re so well preserved, you can see the beautiful mosaics and fountains that Romans built, and learn a lot about how they lived in their houses and public spaces like baths and town squares.

To the north, there’s the second biggest city, Porto. Being one of the oldest settlements in the country, it has many beautiful things to see and learn from. It still has walls from the first medieval settlement that were finished in 1370, more than 600 years ago! From there on, you can visit examples of all major architectural styles that happened in Europe, mostly by visiting the beautiful cathedral and many churches and museums.

Asides from the many lovely cities to visit, the rest of the country has beautiful, diverse landscapes that go from desert to rocky mountains, through lush pine forests. There are great camping sites everywhere and lots of sports to play, for the more adventurous tourists!

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Portuguese Common Words and Phrases – Portuguese Culture for kids

One of the best ways to make learning Portuguese fun and useful is to have conversations, even if they are simple. Saying hello, introducing yourself and asking things are easy sentences that get you far – learning new words and making new friends, as most Portuguese people are very happy to find foreigners taking interest in their culture!

Here are some greetings to start your conversation:

-Olá!

-Hi!

-Bom dia!

-Good day!

-Como está?

-How are you?

-Boa tarde.

-Good afternoon.

-Boa noite!

-Good evening! (great whether you’re meeting someone or wishing them a good night)

By introducing yourself, you’ll make friends easily:

-Como te chamas?

-What’s your name?

-Eu chamo-me John.

-My name is John.

-Quantos anos tens?

-How old are you?

-Eu tenho sete anos.

-I’m seven years old.

Some polite things to say are:

-Por favor.

-Please.

-Obrigado/a.

-Thank you. (If you’re a boy, say obrigado and if you’re a girl, say obrigada)

-Com licença!

-Excuse me!

-Peço desculpa.

-I’m sorry.

And some questions you might ask:

-Pode dizer-me as horas?

-Can you tell me what time it is?

-Onde é a casa de banho?

-Where is the bathroom?

-Eu gostaria de ir à praia.

-I’d like to go to the beach.

-Pode-me trazer um garfo, por favor?

-Can you bring me a fork, please?

Portuguese Children’s Songs – Portuguese Culture for kids

Learning to sing traditional Portuguese children’s songs is a great way to have fun whole learning how to pronounce words. This is because most of them are written around playing with vowel sounds, making the verses light and easy to remember, even if some words don’t make much sense. They’re just fun syllables to teach how vowels work together.

Here are some examples of songs every kid in Portugal knows and loves to sing:

A saia da Carolina

A saia da Carolina

Tem um lagarto pintado

Carol’s skirt

Carol’s skirt

Has a painted lizzard

Sim Carolina ó-ió-ai

Sim Carolina ó-ai meu bem!

Yes Carol o-io-ai

Yes Carol o-my dear!

Tem cuidado ó Carolina

Que o lagarto dá ao rabo,

Be careful Carol

That lizzard wags its tail,

Sim Carolina ó-ió-ai

Sim Carolina ó-ai meu bem!

Yes Carol o-io-ai

Yes Carol o-my dear!

A Barata diz que tem

A Barata diz que tem

Um sapato de veludo!

The Roach says she has

The Roach says she has

A shoe made of velvet!

É mentira da Barata,

Ela tem o pé peludo.

Ha-ha-ha! He-he-he!

Ela tem o pé peludo!

It’s a lie from the Roach,

She just has a fuzzy foot.

Ha-ha.ha! He-he-he!

She just has a fuzzy foot!

Jardim da Celeste

Fui ao jardim da Celeste

Giroflé, giroflá!

Celeste’s Garden

I went to Celeste’s garden

Giroflé, giroflá!

E o que foste lá fazer?

Giroflé, flé, flá!

And what did you do there?

Giroflé, flé, flá!

Fui lá buscar uma rosa

Giroflé, giroflá!

I went there to get a rose

Giroflé, giroflá!

Para quem é essa rosa?

Giroflé, flé, flá!

É para a menina (Ana)

Giroflé, giroflá!

É para a menina (Ana)

Giroflé, flé, flá!

And who is that rose for?

Giroflé, flé, flá!

It’s for Little Miss (Ana)

Giroflé, giroflá!

It’s for Little Miss (Ana)

Giroflé, flé, flá!

In this song, the children are in a circle and name is the person who’s going to sing next, so it’s a fun game as well.

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Portuguese Alphabet – Portuguese Culture for kids

The Portuguese alphabet nowadays doesn’t look very different from the English alphabet anymore. It has 26 letters, but only 23 of them are used in Portuguese words. The other three, which are k, w and y, are there since 1990 so that foreign words can be spelled in their original way. Some of these foreign words (called borrowed words) are for example, kilobyte and wallaby. On their own, they are read as kappa, duplo v (double v) or dáblio and I grego (epsilon).

These are the Portuguese capital letters (or majuscule forms):

A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z

And these are the small letters (or miniscule forms):

a  b  c  d  e  f  g  h  i  j  k  l  m  n  o  p  q  r  s  t  u  v  w  x  y  z

This is what they sound like in Portuguese:

a, be, ce, de, e, efe, ge, aga, i, jota, ele, eme, ene, o, pe, que, erre, esse, te, u, ve, dabliu, xis, i grego, ze

As you can see, the Portuguese alphabet has also only five vowels – a, e, i, o and u – so all the accents you notice in written Portuguese are very useful to add more sounds to spoken words. The accents can be acute (´), grave (`) or circumflex (^). They make vowels sound very different; acute opens the sound of the word even more, grave lets you know when a preposition was added to a word, and circumflex gives a vowel a bit of a nasal sound. Another unusual character is the ç, or cedilla, that is used to make a c sound more like an s without changing how the other letters in the word are said.

Brazilian Portuguese for kids, DVDs, songs, books, flashcards, alphabet poster, alphabet book

European Portuguese (Portugal) for kids, DVDs, songs, books, flashcards, alphabet poster, alphabet book

This may be looking a little complicated to remember, but know Portuguese children learn their abc’s just like you, with a song (just like the English one) to help them remember the order of all letters! All you have to do is change the way you say them.

Common Portuguese Names – Portuguese Culture for kids

Most Portuguese first names are very simple and come from characters in the Bible, like Maria (Mary) or João (John). Some sounds found in names will be very different from English, like the tilde in Sebastião (Sebastian) while others will be almost the same as in English, such as David, which only changes a bit in the way it’s said.

You’ll notice quickly that most boy’s names end with an “o” and most girl’s names end with an “a”. Of course this doesn’t always happen, since combinations of two names are frequent too, such as a girl called Maria-João or a boy called Maria-José.

Full Portuguese family names can seem very long for Americans, as parents will often give their children two first names and a name from their mother and father’s family, so that they carry a bit of heritage from all their loved ones.

Some common girl’s names:

Ana

Beatriz

Rosa

Luísa

Marta

Teresa

Joana

Alice

Isabel

Rita

Some common boy’s names:

Paulo

Rui

Miguel

Ricardo

Carlos

André

Daniel

Fernando

Manuel

Marcos

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Portuguese Holidays – Portuguese Culture for kids

Portugal celebrates a lot of holidays throughout the year, and most of them have roots in Christian celebrations, while others are all about the seasons and some historical events. The traditions people follow are different from those in the United States, but most fall on the same days, like Christmas and Easter.

Christmas time in Portugal is very special! Families cook many traditional dishes with produce from their region, like pumpkin and carrot dumplings sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon. On the night of the 24th of December, everyone gets together and eats codfish, a very popular fish in Portugal, and the family opens the presents after dessert. Some families go to Rooster’s Mass at midnight and on the 25th, eat special leftover dishes and keep their decorations up until the 6th, or King’s Day.

Shortly after, Portugal has Carnaval! It’s not always on the same day of the month, because it happens on a Tuesday, 47 days before Easter (same time as Mardi Gras). Think of Carnaval as a last time to have fun before the solemn time of Easter – and Portuguese people have a lot of that in store. In villages you can still see the traditional costumes of “Entrudo” as Carnaval is known there, where young men dress in colorful fringe outfits and go prank their girlfriends at home, who in turn, get to throw eggs and flour at them. There are also parades where everyone can participate with topsy-turvy costumes or traditional masks. In more recent times, children get to wear whatever costume they like, so it’s a time to fulfill fantasies and dreams, and take those costumes to school parades and dances.

Easter time is much quieter. Families cook up and buy all sorts of sweets, like angel cake, sugar almonds and chocolate eggs, and lay out flowers at their doors to let the procession know they wish to have their house blessed. When the procession passes, the priest and acolytes (they’re the priest’s helpers) go in and commune with the family, have a bite of the many good things at the table, and bless the home with holy water. It’s a great time for families to get together at their older relative’s homes and have all the cousins play together!

During the summer, popular saint holidays are maybe the most specific to Portugal, and a lot of fun. Each city has a patron saint, so not all of them happen on the same day. In Porto for example, on the 24th of June, S João is celebrated with a lot of activities. In preparation for the party, everyone buys “mangerico” (basil) pots with little flags containing popular rhymes. Children make paper lanterns that are set on fire and float through the sky at dusk while their parents start a barbeque of sardines, pork and bell peppers. After everyone has eaten, the family heads downtown to watch the fireworks at midnight and gets to hit strangers in the head with soft plastic hammers or long stemmed garlic leaves. It’s very unique and a lot of fun for all ages!

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Portuguese History – Portuguese Culture for kids

The country of Portugal is very old and has many exciting episodes in its history. It all started in 1143 when D. Afonso Henriques inherited the kingdom of Portugal from his parents, but wanted to keep it independent while his mother wanted to join Portugal with her kingdom of León.  D. Afonso managed to claim independence and gain some more land for Portugal, and that’s how the country was founded. Later on the other kingdoms in our peninsula formed Spain and now both countries enjoy a great relationship.

Maybe the most exciting period in Portuguese history is when the era of Discoveries started, which brought a lot of knowledge to Europe and helped make the world a little smaller. In 1425, D. Henrique (Henry the Navigator) sailed to Ceuta, in North Africa, and conquered it, stating many trips by ship that charted a lot of lands and cultures the Europeans didn’t know about yet. They found many places in the African continent, India, Japan and later on, even Brazil. Along the way, they earned many riches and learned a lot about sailing and other technologies, like reading directions from the stars, mathematics, cooking, and better ways to make all sorts of things.

Nowadays, Portugal is a Democracy, implemented in 1820. Unfortunately, elections were stopped for 50 years by a dictator called Salazar (he didn’t want anyone else being President), but it all ended very well with a revolution where no one had to fight, in 1975! That happened on the 25th of April and what the Portuguese call the “flower revolution” because a florist in Lisbon gave the revolutionaries carnations to wear, something that is still celebrated every year.

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European Portuguese Games – Portuguese for kids

Traditional Portuguese games are a great way to have fun with very little supplies! Grandparents have been passing on awesome activities to their grandchildren for generations. The best thing about them, and why they stayed so popular, is that they need very little, if anything at all, to be played. When toys weren’t available to all kids, this made sure everyone got to have a good time no matter how much money they had!

One of those games is “Sameiras” (Bottle-caps) where, much like marbles, you draw a circle and flick a bottle-cap into the circle to try and get your friend’s caps out of the circle while yours remain, and see who ends with the last one. A game called “Malha” has been around for an even longer time – there are documents talking about it from 1644, more than 300 years ago! It’s very simple and fun. Each player gets two metal discs or even rocks, and has to try and throw down a stake in the ground, or get the disc to land really close to it.  The player with the best score wins; three points for tossing the pin down, and one point for being the closest.

Other games don’t even need any supplies at all. A game many girls like to play is “Bom Barqueiro” (The Good Ferrier) where two children (the ferriers) hold hands and each picks a secret word for him/herself and all others form a line with their hands on their friend’s shoulders. Each kid in the line passes, saying a verse, and the last one is “trapped” between the ferrier’s arms, who will ask which secret word the kid will pick.

The verses are:

-Bom Barqueiro, Bom barqueiro,

Deixai-me passar!

Tenho muitos filhinhos

Para acabar de criar.

Good Ferrier, good Ferrier,

Let me pass!

I have many little children

That I must still raise.

-Passarás, passarás,

Mas algum ficará,

Se não for o da frente,

Há de ser o de trás!

-You shall pass, you shall pass,

But someone will stay,

If not the one ahead,

Then the one behind!

Picking a word will mean the kid will go behind the ferrier who had that secret word, and the line goes through until all children have a ferrier. Then they draw a line between them and see which team can pull the other over the line!

Also, there are many games for which you know the rules already! Hopscotch for example, is a game all Portuguese children know how to play, and there it’s called “Macaca” (monkey), with a little bit of chalk and a stone to throw at the jumping spot. Simon Says simply turns to “O Rei Manda” (The King Orders), and “Apanhadas” (catch) is a success in the schoolyard.

Of all games, maybe the one the whole country is in love with, young and old, is Futebol (soccer). There are many professional teams who play with eleven athletes each in big stadiums, but not much is needed to capture the spirit of the game. Portuguese kids make their goalposts out of anything that can mark the floor, and have teams of any size with goalies to see who can score the most by kicking their ball past the goalie!

Learn European Portuguese for kids DVDs, books, flashcards, online games

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Portuguese Fashion – Portuguese Culture for kids

Traditional fashion in Portugal is still worn on special occasions, like holidays and culture shows. Portugal doesn’t have one national outfit, but many outfits according to the profession or occasion the person is dressed for. They’re usually very simple, but lovely and vary according to the region people are from.

Most clothes are in basic, strong colors, such as black, red, green and white. They’re made of natural fabrics like linen, cotton, burlap, wool and even straw, sometimes. The finer fabrics are embroidered in skirt hems and shirt collars, making them even more colorful.

In Viana do Castelo for example, a lovely city in the north of the country, brides are married in black, unlike other Portuguese brides. They wear black coats and long skirts with white embroidery and fine lace veils, and finish the outfit with dozens of gold filigree necklaces draped over their chests.

Nowadays, most people wear modern clothing in their everyday life and keep traditional outfits if they belong to a folklore group that dances or plays traditional music. Each region will have special patterns and colors, but the basic outfit will look the same. The men have dark wool trousers tied at the waist with a fringed sash and matching vests over white shirts, and short brim hats. In the islands, they tuck their trousers under knee-high socks and wear a felt cap (it looks like Santa Claus’ hat). The ladies wear single ruffle skirts in bright colors like red, long or about mid-leg, with white socks on clogs. They also wear white shirts and sometimes embroidered aprons over the skirts. On their heads, they sport fringed scarves or little rolls of fabric so that they can balance baskets on their heads.

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