5 books for kids to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
There is nothing quite as special as watching your kids connect with and celebrate their heritage. September 15 to October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month, which is the perfect time for families to gather, embrace and celebrate all the vibrancy of their culture. With that in mind, grab a few of these books from your local library and make sure your kiddos get a chance to flip through the gorgeous illustrations and listen as you read aloud.
1) What Can you do with a Rebozo? by Carmen Tafolla
With cheerful, bright illustrations and a story full of vivid imagination, this book about a young girl and her family shows all ways they use a rebozo, a traditional Mexican shawl. The girl details how her mom spreads her rebozo like a butterfly to dress up on Sunday morning and how she wraps it into a cozy cradle for her baby brother so her hands are free to weave a braid. Grab this book from your local library if you want to share a warm and colorful tribute to this cultural garment with your children.
2) Mango, Abuela, and Me by Meg Medina
When Mia’s abuela moves to the city to live with Mia and her family, Mia discovers that Abuela can’t understand or read English, so she decides to help Abuela learn. Along the way, Mia learns too, about her family and heritage, in addition to more Spanish. She even adopts a parrot to assist. Read and see all the ways that these characters communicate and grow together.
3) My Papi Has a Motorcycle by Isabel Quintero
This story about a girl named Daisy and her Papi is full of beautiful illustrations and vibrant descriptions of a city that is well loved and full of history for their family. As Daisy and her Papi zoom around their city of Corona, California, we’re introduced to all the places they love: Her Abuelita’s home, tortillerías, markets, and the construction site where Papi works. Come along for the ride, as this heartwarming hometown tribute is sure to make you smile.
4) The Day of the Dead by Bob Barner and Teresa Mlawer
This fun, upbeat bilingual picture book (with text on each page in both Spanish and English) is full of rhymes and simple descriptions of activities that take place on Dia de los Muertos. There’s also an extra description of The Day of the Dead in the back of the book for further learning about the holiday for kids. The playful illustrations (think dancing skeletons) and bright, vivid colours make this book a joy to look at as well as read aloud.
5) Alma and How She Got Her Name by Juana Martinez-Neal
Meet Alma. Also known as Alma Sofia Esperanza José Pura Candela—a name that she thinks is too long. That is, until her Dad explains where each name came from (like Sofia, the grandmother who loved books and flowers and José, the grandfather who was an artist). As her dad weaves a heartwarming tale of their family’s history, Alma gains a new appreciation for her long, beautiful name.
To find free literacy programs and activities for you and your family, click here.