Celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month Children’s Newspaper

A dancer in traditional Hispanic attire at a celebration in San Francisco. (Carol M. Highsmith / Library of Congress)

National Hispanic Heritage Month is observed annually in the United States from September 15 to October 15. The event honors the histories, cultures and contributions from American Latinx and Hispanic communities. This includes all residents of – or descent from someone from – Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America. The commemoration began in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week. It was extended to one month by President Ronald Reagan in 1988.

The dates of the celebration were chosen for coincide with the Independence Day celebrations of several Latin American countries. Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua all declared independence from Spain on September 15, 1821. Mexico and Chile followed shortly thereafter, on September 16, 1821 and September 18, 1821, respectively.

Hispanic Heritage Month activities center around the annual theme (Credit: Hispanicmoth.net)

Cities and towns across the United States celebrate the month with traditional festivals and parades. Schools commemorate the occasion by highlighting the achievements of Latinos and Hispanics. The extensive The list includes civil rights activist Cesar Chavez, who has dedicated his life to securing better working conditions and fair wages for California farm workers. Also inspiring is Sonia Sotomayor, the first Hispanic and the third woman to become an associate judge on the Supreme Court.

Former NASA astronaut Ellen Ochoa was the first Hispanic woman to go to space when she served for nine days mission aboard Space Shuttle Discovery in 1993. She was also the first Hispanic director of NASA’s Johnson Space Center and the second female director. Of course, no mention of Latino achievements may be complete without Lin-Manuel Miranda, the award-winning creator of Broadway shows as Hamilton Hamilton and In Heights.

The Smithsonian Latino Center (SLC) and other institutions, such as the Museum of Latin Art (MOLAA) and libraries, celebrate this very important month with educational programs centered around the annual theme. This year theme, “Esperanza: A Celebration of Hispanic Heritage and Hope,” encourages Americans to honor Hispanic past contributions and to “reflect on the greatness of our future if we hold on to our resilience And hope. “

Happy National Hispanic Heritage Month!

Resources: History.com, Whitehouse.gov, www.wkyc.com