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HomeClassroom ResourcesCalendar Activities

May 05

Today is Cinco de Mayo.

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Today is Cinco de Mayo.

Grades 7 – 12
Calendar Activity Type Holiday & School Celebration

 

EVENT DESCRIPTION

 

 

Cinco de Mayo is not an American holiday, although perhaps it should be, since Mexican Americans treat it as a bigger holiday than do residents of Mexico. Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Battle of Puebla, where in 1862 a small number of Mexican soldiers defeated the French 100 miles east of Mexico City. People of Mexican ancestry in the U.S. celebrate this day with parades, folk dancing, mariachi music, and other fun.

CLASSROOM ACTIVITY

 

 

Ask students to conduct research in the library and on the Web to find images and artifacts that suitably represent Mexico. Students can choose to research a piece of art, music, dance, literature, or food. Challenge students to think beyond stereotypical images of Mexico and Mexican-American culture (such as tacos, chihuahuas, and sombreros), and look for objects and icons with a deeper and more substantial meaning. Start your students' research with a brainstorming session which can include:

  • Artists such as Diego Rivera
  • Ancient Mexican peoples, such as the Aztecs
  • The history of the Mexican state of Puebla

After students have completed their research, have them create a presentation that highlights something interesting, beautiful, significant, or amazing about their choice-and share the information with the class.

WEBSITES

 

 
  • Cinco de Mayo: A Local Legacy

    This article from America's Story from America's Library discsusses Cinco de Mayo as a "local legacy."

  • Cinco de Mayo

    This site contains basic information about Cinco de Mayo, as well as dozens of links for further exploration an activities.

  • Map of Puebla

    Xpeditions provides this map of Puebla, central to the story of Cinco de Mayo.

RELATED RESOURCES

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My Family Traditions: A Class Book and a Potluck Lunch

After analyzing Family Pictures/Cuadros de Familia by Carmen Lomas Garza, students create a class book with artwork and information about their ancestry, traditions, and recipes, followed by a potluck lunch.

 

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Investigating Names to Explore Personal History and Cultural Traditions

Students investigate the meanings and origins of their names in order to establish their own personal histories and to explore the cultural significance of naming traditions.

 

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By critically analyzing popular television programs, students develop an awareness of the messages that are portrayed through the media.

 

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Past meets present in this lesson in which students practice verb tense when they write personal short stories that they then publish in a flip book.