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Bemba Colorá Celia Cruz Canción de la Semana Cover 4391038 1

Bemba colorá by Celia Cruz

Song activities for Spanish classes

Multi level
32 Pages

Bemba colorá is one of Celia Cruz' most popular songs, and yet it is often overlooked among her greatest hits. This anti-racist song celebrates pride in African heritage and offers Spanish teachers an opportunity to recognize and affirm all the qualities that make their students "uniquely you".

Because there are two very different versions of Bemba colorá, please make sure that you preview this one to know which song lyrics this product accompanies.

These plans are accessible to students in their second semester of Spanish if they are accustomed to reading Spanish-language materials written for language learners (ex: the SOMOS Curriculum, El mundo en tus manos, printable storybooks, leveled readers). Use these materials as a Song of the Week during Black History Month to highlight the diversity of afrolatinos around the world.

Different than many song materials produced by The Comprehensible Classroom, this product does not include any activities that require students to interact with the complete lyrics. Please read through the description of contents below carefully to make sure that it is a good fit for your purposes!


  • MONDAY: Read & discuss Celia Cruz biography (individual, whole class, communicative components)
  • TUESDAY: interpret & discuss "Pa' mí, tú no eres na'"
  • WEDNESDAY: interpret "Bemba colorá', learn about Celia's reason for writing the song, create word wall bulletin board with positive adjectives about students
  • THURSDAY: compare the actual chorus lyrics to Celia's pronunciation of the lyrics
  • FRIDAY: listen critically to songs in these four genres: rumba, son, guaracha, danzón


The product download is a PDF that contains a clickable link directing the buyer to a Google Drive folder containing these materials:

  • KWL (Know/Want to know/Learned) chart about Celia Cruz
  • One page biography of Celia Cruz, written in Spanish
  • 10-slide reading about the meaning of 'Bemba colorá' (big, colorful lips; associated with people of African descent) and Celia's reason for writing the song; written in Spanish
  • An MP4 of this video to share with your students on social media or school platform so that they can find out which positive adjective describes them
  • A printable set of 24 positive adjectives that matches the ones from the video so that each student can decorate one and create a class "Yo soy" word wall with affirmations
  • Slides with embedded links to school-appropriate videos of songs in the four genres mentioned above
  • A song listening guide for students to indicate the instruments that they can identify in each genre and notes about the style of music and their preferences

These materials will fill 10-45 minutes of class time each day for five days. Use one each day to highlight this as a Song of the week, or use them all at once to fill 2-3 days with content.


  • I used this material as a song of the week.

    Sara Marruffo
  • Super high interest unit for my students.

    Rowena A.
  • My Spanish 2 students enjoyed learning about Celia Cruz. Used this resource for Black History Month.

    Ruth G.
  • My students are OBSESSED with Celia Cruz! After introducing them to Rie y Llora during your SOMOS 1 Unit 10, and this was a perfect return to her music later in the year. I also love the cultural connection to Afro-latinos. Awesome resource!

    Shanna C.
  • Fantastic! The lesson plans make it so easy to execute this lesson. I know when I get something from The Comprehensible Classroom it is going to be engaging, collaborative, informative, cultural, and comprehensible. I love the biography of Celia Cruz. Great song!

    Rachel T.

Bemba colorá by Celia Cruz


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