For our preschoolers at Spanish Schoolhouse Katy, the weather is an important concept we learn at Circle Time. Seasons, calendars, and how to dress for the weather bring up fun conversations, especially when Texas sees unusual weather like our recent snowy winters! All sorts of vocabulary and weather expressions are introduced here.
If you’re traveling in a Spanish-speaking country, it’s also handy to have a good grip on the lingo so you can ask the locals how to prepare for your day! After all, when you’re departing for a full day of sightseeing, you’ll need to know what to take along – an umbrella, a windbreaker, gloves, or extra sunscreen! Expressions vary from country to country, but the local residents will likely understand what you’re asking.
Here are some tips for beginners so you can be ready for adventure or just so you can practice with your Spanish Schoolhouse Katy preschooler! Let’s look at some of the weather expressions/vocabulary and the ways Spanish and English differ.
Weather Words and Expressions
Talking about the weather in Spanish takes a little getting used to because the verbs are slightly different. In English, we only use one verb (to BE) to say how the weather IS: It is sunny, it is hot, it is windy. In Spanish, there are three verbs! These are Estar (to be), Hacer (to make/do), and Haber (a special verb that means, “There is” or “There are.”). Common expressions with these verbs include:
Estar – to be
Está nublado – It is cloudy.
Está lloviendo – It is raining.
Hacer – to make/to do
Hace viento. It makes wind. (It’s windy)
Hace calor. It makes heat. (It’s hot)
Hace frío. It makes cold. (It’s cold)
Haber – there is or there are
Hay buen tiempo./Hay buen clima. – It’s nice weather.
Hay nieve. There is snow.
Hay nubes. There are clouds.
Once in a while, you don’t even need a verb! Some words stand alone as a complete sentence:
Llueve. It rains.
Neva. It snows.
If you want to know what the weather is like today, you could ask ¿Cómo está el clima hoy? You could also ask, “How is it outside?” – ¿Cómo está afuera?
To get you ready for the responses, here are lots of weather-related vocabulary words!
- frío – cold
- nublado – cloudy
- fresco – fresh/cool
- cálido – warm
- húmedo – humid
- el clima – the weather
- la temperatura – the temperature
- los grados – degrees (often in Celsius in Spanish-speaking countries)
- el sol – the sun
- las nubes – clouds
- la niebla – fog
- la lluvia – rain
- la nieve – snow
- la brisa – breeze
- el viento – wind
- el trueno – thunder
- el relámpago – lightning
- el viento – wind
- la tormenta – storm
- el aguanieve – sleet
- la helada – frost
- el granizo – hail
- la estación – season
- la primavera – spring
- el verano – summer
- el otoño – fall
- el invierno – winter
- la epoca de lluvia – rainy season
- İQué ventarrón! – How windy!
Colorful Spanish Weather Expressions
A few expressions can emphasize how you’re feeling about the weather. On a really hot day, you might say you’re burning to a crisp, “Me achicharro!” (If you’re familiar with the snack, chicharrones, you’ll have a visual of how hot they’re talking!)
A Spanish idiom for heavy rain is, “Está lloviendo a cántaros!” This means, “It’s raining jugs!” (like we say raining cats and dogs). Speaking of animals, you might hear an English speaker say they are sweating like a pig. Well, in Spain, they say they’re sweating like a chicken! “Estoy sudando como un pollo.”
Another saying in Spain is a reminder to not count on warm weather until June: “Hasta el 40 de mayo, no te quites el sayo.” This literally means “Until June 9th (40 days after May 1), don’t take off your pullover.”
If you know an interesting or funny weather expression in Spanish, please share it in the Comments section below!
Practice Makes Perfect
At Spanish Schoolhouse Katy we play outside every day, weather permitting! This gives parents a great opportunity to have weather conversations with their little ones. Ask them what the weather (el clima) was like at recess time (la hora de recreo).
Another tip for practicing weather expressions is to check the forecast in Spanish-speaking cities – or your local forecast in Spanish. Challenge yourself to read it in Spanish!
Being able to have simple conversations about your day can help you gain confidence in your language skills. Take a look outside the window and let us know in the “Comments” below – ¿Cómo está el clima hoy?