Chamaco – Translations & Meanings in English

Definition – In Latin American Spanish speaking countries, chamaco is an informal and common word that is used to talk to young people. Depending on the context, ‘chamaco’ can be translated as ‘kid’, ‘boy’, ‘young’, ‘girl’ or ‘son, ‘daughter’, ‘children’. ‘Chamaca’ and ‘chamacos’ are its feminine and plural form respectively. 

What Does ‘Chamaco’ Means?

  • Translation #1: If talking about kids, ‘chamaco’ and ‘chamaca’ mean ‘kid’ or ‘children’. Depending on the context, it also means ‘son’ or ‘daughter’.  
  • Translation #2: When used as an adjective, it means ‘young’. 
  • Translation #3: It means ‘boy’ or ‘girl’ when used to talk to a younger person. 

How and When to use ‘Chamaco’

  • To talk about kids. ‘Chamaco’ is an informal word that means ‘kid’, ‘daughter’, ‘son’ or ‘children’. Spanish speakers also use it when referring to their children. As a result, they use ‘chamaco’ as a synonym of ‘son’ and ‘chamaca’ as a synonym of ‘daughter’. 
  • To express that someone is young. In informal conversations, ‘chamaco’ and ‘chamaca’ can also be used to express that a person is young. In order to keep this meaning, this word will need to work with the verb ‘estar’ as well as some adverbs. 
  • As a synonym of ‘boy’ and ‘girl’. It can also be used as a way to talk to younger people. Therefore, in this situation, ‘chamaco’ means ‘boy’ and ‘girl’. Additionally, Spanish speakers also use this meaning as an affectionate way to call their friends. 

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Examples on How to Use ‘Chamaco’

Here are some real-life examples of how to use ‘chamaco’ in a Spanish sentence. This word is well known in all Latin American countries in general, but it’s quite popular in: 

  • Mexico
  • El Salvador 
  • Dominican Republic
  • Honduras
  • Venezuela
  • Argentina

Talking about kids

As a noun, ‘chamaco’ needs to match the gender or the number of the person you’re talking about. Make sure to use chamaco, chamaca, chamacos and chamacas appropriately. 

¡Ay! Ahí vienen esos chamacos latosos!
Oh my God! Here come those annoying kids

Mira que bonito perro tiene esa chamaca
Look what a beautiful dog that girl has

¡Chamaco! ¡Ven! Ayúdame con estas bolsas
Kid! Come here! Help me with these bags

With this meaning, Spanish speakers can also use ‘chamaco’ to talk about their or someone else’s children. In this situation, this word will mean ‘son’, ‘children’ or ‘daughter’.  

Ya nació la chamaca de Ismael
Ismael’s baby girl was already born

Pues mi chamaco se fue a Argentina de intercambio
Well my son went to Argentina on an exchange

To express that someone is young

[Estar conjugated] + bien + chamaco

Pablo estaba bien chamaco cuando nació su hijo
Pablo was very young when his child was born

¡Están bien chamacos! ¿Para qué se casan ahorita?
You’re very young! Why would you marry now?

¡Ánimo! Todavía estás muy chamaca y tienes tiempo para decidir
Cheer up! You’re still very young and you have time to decide

Take Note: You can conjugate ‘estar’ in any tense that you need. 

As a synonym of ‘boy’ or ‘girl’

Grown-ups can also use ‘chamaco’ when talking to a younger person (they don’t need to have a family bond and the younger person won’t necessarily be a kid). As a synonym of ‘boy’ or ‘girl’, this meaning is also applied as an affectionate way to call your friends. 

Mira, qué chamaco tan guapo
Look, what a handsome boy

¡Chamacas! ¿Cómo están? Las extraño
Girls! How are you! I miss you

¿Qué vamos a hacer el fin de semana, chamacos y chamacas?
What are we going to do on the weekend, boys and girls? 

Who Can You Use ‘Chamaco’ With?

‘Chamaco’ is quite popular among Spanish speakers, but make sure to use it only in informal conversations and people you’re comfortable speaking casually with. 

Synonyms: 5 Ways To Say Chamaco

  • Joven → It’s the direct translation of ‘young’.
  • Morro → It’s a Mexican slang synonym for ‘chamaco’. 
  • Niño Niño is the standard translation of ‘kid’. 
  • Chavo → This Mexican slang word can be used as a synonym for ‘young’ or as a way to call a young man. Chava will be used when talking about girls. 
  • Hijo / Hija → They are the direct translation of ‘son’ and ‘daughter’ respectively. 

Daniela Sanchez

¡Hola! Soy Daniela Sanchez, I've been studying Spanish professionally as well as teaching it in Mexico and online for over 10 years. I’ve taught Spanish to a wide array of foreigners from many backgrounds. Over the years, I've made it my mission to work hard on refining many challenging to understand grammar topics to make my students' learning experiences easier, faster and more enjoyable. Read More About Me

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