WWW: Día de los Muertos at the National Hispanic Cultural Center

Teacher Workshop at the NHCC

Teacher Workshop at the NHCC

The phenomenon of Día de los Muertos can be traced through Mesoamerica, where death initiated a journey of the soul through the nine levels of Chicunamictlán (The Land of the Dead). Origins can also be traced through Europe, where the popes of four centuries grappled with paganism, eventually establishing All Saints Day and All Souls Days on November 1st and 2nd.

The National Hispanic Cultural Center (NHCC) has launched a Día de los Muertos website, exploring these fascinating origins, including the origins of specific elements like ofrendas and calaveras. The Día de los Muertos website also features lesson plans for ofrendas (all grade levels), calaveras (elementary), papel picado (all grade levels), and sugar skulls (all grade levels). Continue reading

En la Clase: Día de los Muertos, Sugar Skulls & Acrostic Poetry

IMG_3829It’s that time of year again! Día de los Muertos is a month away, so for the next couple of weeks we’ll be sharing various resources to help you teach about this cultural celebration in your classrooms.

Last week we had a wonderful professional development workshop on “Día de los Muertos: Skeletons & Cultural Literacy.”  I thought I’d share a few of the activities we talked about that night and how you could turn them in to a mini-unit including Acrostic Poetry and Sugar Skulls.  You can also access our entire guide on teaching about Día de los Muertos here.  It includes background information and reading, lesson plans, an annotated bibliography divided by grade levels, and a glossary.

Continue reading