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Honoring Hispanic Heritage Month

5-minute read 

Discover fun, age-appropriate activities to bring learning home and honor Hispanic artists, athletes, and visionaries. 

  • Create your own flower crown or use leaves and petals to make art with your infant or toddler, like artist Frida Kahlo. 
  • Encourage your preschooler to explore sports, like gymnast Laurie Hernandez and NASCAR driver Aric Almirola. 
  • Try baking and measuring with your school-age child to channel the skills of Jaime Escalante, a Hispanic mathematician.

It’s Hispanic Heritage Month, so from September 15th to October 15th, we’re recognizing the contributions of generations of Hispanic people who have influenced U.S. history, culture, and achievements.  

Hispanic Heritage Month

But why is it called Hispanic Heritage Month rather than Latino or Spanish Heritage Month? As part of our anti-bias approach to education, we help children compare the differences and similarities between the terms Hispanic, Latino, and Spanish. Hispanic means you speak Spanish, whereas Latino refers to ancestry based on the geographic location of Latin America. Spanish is a language and a nationality, but when referring to identity, Spanish refers to someone who is from or has ancestry in Spain. 

Looking through a person-first lens, we have some great age-appropriate activities to bring learning home and honor Hispanic artists, athletes, and visionaries.  

Babies and Toddlers 
The Hispanic community is filled with incredible artists who inspire us through art, music, and dance. In our centers, children will be painting a mural inspired by Frida Kahlo’s love of nature. Extend this experience at home by getting creative together. Go on a nature walk and gather leaves to create your own Frida-inspired leaves crown, or use them you find to make your own unique piece of art.  

Preschoolers 
Hispanic athletes have changed the face of sports around the world. Laurie Hernandez took home a gold medal at the 2016 Olympics for her amazing gymnastics skills, and NASCAR driver Aric Almirola is zooming his way into the history books as well. Bring the excitement home by trying out some sports skills. You could create your own Olympic-inspired games, design an obstacle course, have a car race with toy cars (or make your own out of boxes), or just get outside and kick a ball around. Encourage your preschooler to discover their own interest in these sports and more. 

School Age Children 
In our classrooms, we will be talking about Jaime Escalante, a Hispanic mathematician and educator whose accomplishments as a calculus teacher inspired the movie Stand and Deliver. To bring this theme home, why not get your math on? Think beyond flash cards and play hopscotch, experiment with STEM activities, and practice measuring while cooking your favorite dish—check out our cooking show KinderCare Cooks for inspiration and recipes your family will love (even your pickiest eater!). 

One thing you may also notice about this special celebration is the timing. Instead of being celebrated in only September or October, Hispanic Heritage Month’s date range was chosen because it includes the anniversaries of independence for five Latin American countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. 

Discovering new things about ourselves through the eyes of others can help kids develop respect and appreciation for people like—and unlike—themselves. When we truly celebrate one another, we get one step closer to creating inclusivity for all. 
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