Hispanic Heritage Month is September 15-October 15. Albuquerque has many activities and events associated with this month. Check them out here.
I am not Hispanic, but my children are Latinos. I want them to celebrate who they are and where they come from. Their heritage is part of them, and they should know about it. My husband and I are ill-equipped to be able to teach them Spanish. Listen, we’ve had a really hard time learning English, OK? But we can most certainly introduce them to stories, characters, writers, and influential Hispanic Americans through literature.
Years ago, while I was earning an English degree, my professors introduced me to many Hispanic writers who opened this small town girl’s eyes to so much.
Reading first person accounts of people who are different from you can provide some much needed perspective. And reading first person accounts of people who are similar to you can provide some much needed camaraderie and belonging.
All this to say, don’t just read to your kids. Choose some books for yourself too, and celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with a good read.
Books for Kids to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
Grab a picture book and read aloud as a family. Here are a few ideas. Maybe you can read the first selection and go out for paleta afterwards. Yes, please! Tia’s Tamales is even written by a native New Mexican.
What Can You Do With Paleta? by Carmen Tafolla
Pepe and the Parade: A Celebration of Hispanic Heritage by Tracey Kyle and Mirelle Ortega
Tia’s Tamales by Ana Baca
Be Bold! Be Brave! 11 Latinas who made U.S. History by
Books for Teens to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
I am not going to lie. I have read all three of these books as an adult, and they’re amazing. They are not reserved for teenage readers. Of course, Rudolfo Anaya is from our beautiful New Mexico.
The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros
Tortilla Sun by Jennifer Cervantes
Bless Me Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya
Books for Adults to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
Alright, mamas. Here’s some good reads for you. Jimmy Santiago Baca grew up right here in New Mexico. A Place to Stand may be one of my favorite books . . . ever.
A Place to Stand by Jimmy Santiago Baca
Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez
Before We Were Free by Julia Alvarez
I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika L. Sanchez