Celebrate Latinx Culture, History & Trailblazers During Hispanic Heritage Month!

September 15th through October 15th is Hispanic Heritage Month! Celebrate the culture, histories, and contributions of Americans whose ancestors come from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America.

Across the country, Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated with festivals, community events, and parades. Originally begun in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon B. Johnson, it was later expanded to cover a full month by President Ronald Reagan in 1988. Hispanic Heritage Month encompasses a range of important dates, including September 15th, the anniversary of independence for Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16th and September 18th. And on October 12th Día de la Raza is observed by many Spanish-speaking countries and communities to honor the countries and people that were conquered by Spain and other European explorers.

Continue below to celebrate and learn about the diversity of Hispanic and Latinx cultures and histories, visionaries and leaders, and engage in important conversations about social justice and allyship in America, with resources for all ages.

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Learn About Hispanic and Latinx History & Culture

Celebrate Latin American and Hispanic Heritage Month With These Tasty Recipes!

Grades PreK-3
You and your child will have a blast whipping up these popular dishes from Mexico and Puerto Rico!

11 Picture Books Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month

Grades PreK-5
National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated between September 15 and October 15. It honors the many Latinos who have greatly contributed, influenced, and enriched our culture and society. To honor those contributions, here are 11 inspiring and colorful children’s books that celebrate Latino voices and culture.

Hispanic Heritage Month | The Library of Congress

Grades PreK-12
A collaborative project of the Library of Congress and the National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, the contents of this site pay tribute to the generations of Hispanic and Latinx Americans who have positively influenced and enriched our nation and society with primary documents, blog posts, videos, recordings and more.

Latino Americans Collection

Grades 3-12
This collection of lesson plans, videos and classroom resources invites teachers and students to explore the history, people and issues chronicled in the PBS series, Latino Americans. Along the way, it engages students in dramatic real-life stories and offers primary texts that serve the goals of the Common Core.

Chicana Dance Crew Blends Tap and Mexican Footwork | If Cities Could Dance

Grades 6-12
La Mezcla is an all-female San Francisco dance company rooted in Latinx traditions, Chicano culture and social justice. Founder Vanessa Sanchez and the other dancers blend tap dance and zapateado or traditional footwork from Veracruz, Mexico, to create a style they call “zapatap.” Watch as they perform dynamic choreography and learn about how dance can serve as a means of communication, community, and empowerment.

Hispanic and Latinx Leaders & Visionaries

The Joy of Art with Roberto Juarez | AHA! A House for Arts

Grades 3-12
Learn about the work of artist Roberto Juarez. Inspired by his memories of childhood, Juarez combines collage, painting, and printmaking to make large-scale artworks. In the related activity, students will work with these techniques to create their own mixed media piece.

The Unsung History Makers: Maria Moreno

Grades 6-12
Unravel the mystery of Maria Moreno, a woman who fought for farm labor rights before Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta formed the United Farm Workers, in this interactive lesson. Use primary and secondary sources to learn about her story, and then search out an unsung history maker in your own community!

Junot Díaz, Writer | MacArthur Fellows Program

Grades 6-12
In this interview, 2012 MacArthur Fellow Junot Díaz discusses the roles place and identity play in his writing and how his own immigrant experience informs his storytelling. Díaz is a writer whose works of fiction offer powerful insight into the realities of the Caribbean diaspora, American assimilation, and lives lived between cultures. Born in the Dominican Republic and living in the U.S. since adolescence, Díaz writes from the vantage point of his own experience, creating nuanced characters struggling to succeed and often invisible in plain sight.

Latinx Contributions to the National Parks

Grades 6-12
George Melendez Wright, a pioneer in wildlife preservation, and Juan Lujan, a member of the Depression-era Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), contributed to a long and meaningful legacy of latinx leaders in national parks. Melendez Wright spoke out about the human treatment of animals in nature, while Lujan found meaning and identity in his work in national parks via the CCC.

The American Dream | Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go For It

Grades 6-12
Rita Moreno, the celebrated and award-winning actor, encountered and overcame relentless racism when she immigrated to the United States from Puerto Rico. Explore the complex ideas and realities surrounding immigration and the concept of the American Dream in this resource from the AMERICAN MASTERS documentary Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go For It, including her iconic role in the 1961 film West Side Story.  

Allyship & Social Justice Resources

Race, Ethnicity, and Culture Collection | Sesame Street in Communities

Grades PreK-3
Sesame Street in Communities provides parents, caregivers, and family childcare providers with support to help lay the foundations for children’s healthy development. Resources in the Race, Ethnicity, and Culture collection provide tools to help think about, ask about, and talk about race with young children, develop pride in their own unique identities, and cope with difficult race-related situations and experiences. Specific resources include content to address anti-Hispanic racism.

Social Justice Books: Guide for Selecting Anti-Bias Children’s Books

Grades PreK-5
Children’s books continue to be an invaluable source of information and values. They reflect the attitudes in our society about diversity, power relationships among different groups of people, and various social identities. Carefully choosing quality children’s books is an indispensable educational and child-raising task. Use this guide from Social Justice Books to help you identify and select anti-bias children’s books for your family or classroom.

Elevating Hispanic/Latinx History All Year | PBS Teachers Lounge

Grades 6-12
Try these tips for how teachers can better use their curriculum “as a window and mirror” for students and celebrate diverse Hispanic and Latinx history throughout the academic year, not only during Hispanic Heritage Month.

Diversity in Latino Culture

Grades 9-12
In this interactive lesson, students explore the rich diversity within Latino culture using WGBY’s bilingual program Presencia. The lesson explores the variety found within Latino food, music, and art and introduces individuals who honor and celebrate their culture. Students build their vocabulary with Spanish words and expressions and grow in their appreciation of how diversity can enrich society.

Watch & Wonder Programming

Check out the Mountain Lake PBS Watch & Wonder block, weekdays from 1-3pm! In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, join us as we celebrate and learn about the diversity of Hispanic and Latinx cultures and histories with special programs in October.

Wednesday, October 11

1 PM: Fruits of Labor | POV

Ashley, a Mexican-American teenager living in California, dreams of graduating high school and going to college. But when ICE raids threaten her family, Ashley is forced to become the breadwinner, working days in the strawberry fields and nights at a food processing company. A co-presentation of POV and VOCES, co-produced by POV and Latino Public Broadcasting. Official Selection, SXSW Film Festival.

2:30 PM: Team Meryland | POV

In the projects of Watts, Meryland Gonzales, a twelve-year-old female boxer trains to be crowned the 2019 Junior Olympics champion. Meanwhile, her immigrant parents work tirelessly to give their child a shot at achieving her dreams.

Thursday, October 12

1 PM: Eliades Ochoa: From Cuba to the World

Eliades Ochoa became known the world over in the late ‘90s as an original member of the legendary Cuban band, the Buena Vista Social Club. However, his passion for his country’s musical heritage led him to a life dedicated to music much earlier than that. See how the streets of Santiago de Cuba became the backdrop of Ochoa’s youth and adulthood.

2 PM: Singing Our Way to Freedom

Explore the life and music of Ramon “Chunky” Sanchez, from his humble beginnings as a farmworker in Blythe, California to the dramatic moment when he received one of our nation’s highest musical honors at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Chunky’s arc of transformation from marginalized farm kid to charismatic social activist shows how one person can mobilize people to change the world.

Friday, October 13

1 PM: Flamenco: The Land is Still Fertile | Episode 1

Flamenco – that passionate art form, recognized by UNESCO as part of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity – is in danger of disappearing under the onslaught of mislabeling by the entertainment industry. What is it?  What are its ties to gitanos (Spanish Gypsy), farm workers and other dispossessed peoples?  What does the future of flamenco tell us about the values of modern society?  

2 PM: Flamenco: The Land is Still Fertile | Episode 2

Flamenco – that passionate art form, recognized by UNESCO as part of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity – is in danger of disappearing under the onslaught of mislabeling by the entertainment industry. What is it?  What are its ties to gitanos (Spanish Gypsy), farm workers and other dispossessed peoples?  What does the future of flamenco tell us about the values of modern society?