Each year, from September 15th to October 15th, we celebrate the histories, cultural traditions, and contributions of Hispanic Americans and their ancestors. Children’s books, with relatable characters and stories, are a great way to introduce children to new cultures and traditions. To celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, we have chosen five books by Hispanic authors that explore Hispanic history, culture, and language. We hope these books open the door to learning and fun for you and your family.
Alma Sofia Esperanza José Pura Candela thinks that her name is just far too long! When she asks her father for insight, she opens the door to a fun and inspiring adventure into their family history.. Alma’s father tells her about her grandparents, great grandparents, and other relatives that she was named for. Through her father’s stories, she learns about her family, her heritage, and the significance of her name. In the end, she gains a deeper connection to her family and a newfound appreciation for the name that fits her perfectly.
Ana has a deep love of books and stories, but living in a small, remote village in Colombia, her supply of books is small.. She rereads her favorite book over and over again, and even makes up her own extraordinary bedtime tales to tell her little brother. Still, she longs for more stories. One day, a visitor arrives, bringing with him an extraordinary sight – a little library carried by a pair of burros. Suddenly, Ana has access to more stories than she could ever imagine, and is even inspired to write a book of her own. Based on the true story of librarian Luis Soriano, this beautifully illustrated book illustrates the power of a good story.
Celebrating ancestors is a tradition the world over. Some families celebrate All Souls Day, some celebrate the Ghost Festival, and some celebrate el Día de los Muertos. Through poetic bilingual (English and Spanish) text and torn paper-style illustrations, this book provides a great introduction to el Día de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead. You will learn about the meaning and usage of marigold petals, sugar skulls, and more as you celebrate along with the family in the book. Not only will your family learn more about Hispanic culture, but it may open up dialogue about your own cultural holidays and traditions.
To Rosalba, no one is as amazing and important as her abuela (grandmother). In this charming story, Rosalba and her grandmother have an imaginary adventure flying over New York City, exploring the places and traditions that are part of their familial and cultural heritage. Along the way, Rosalba – and readers – learn Spanish words and phrases and see the world-famous city from a whole new perspective.
Love transcends language. That’s what Mia learns when her abuela (grandmother) moves in with her and her parents. But, when Mia tries to share her favorite books with her abuela, she discovers how learning each other’s language can bring them even closer together. She begins to teach her grandmother English and learns some Spanish along the way. They even get some help from a new feathered friend! You’ll learn right along with Mia and her abuela in this inspiring story about the power of love and language.
We hope these books inspire learning, discussion, and exploration.. If you would like to explore more books by Hispanic authors check out the links below. For more books lists, fun activities, and inspiring stories, head over to the Kids Co. blog.