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Reflections in a Latin American Mirror

Mary Stewart Bargar

Contents of Curriculum Unit 97.01.02:

To Guide Entry

Reflections in a Latin-American Mirror is an eight week unit introducing students to Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Puerto Rico, Guatemala, Mexico and Chile through poetry, folklore and contemporary fiction. We will focus on individual countries after sharing a piece of literature connected to that geographical region. The eighth week will culminate with an interactive exhibit open to all community members. The exhibit will include original art, music, literature and cuisine prepared by the students. It can easily be adapted to any elementary age group.

The countries included in this unit were chosen because they reflect the diversity of my school community. Literature is woven throughout our day, and therefore not limited to the selections outlined here. The student bibliography includes an expanded selection of literature that will be used in this unit. Preference is given , but not limited to, literature written and illustrated by Latin Americans or Latino Americans. Although compiled for Kindergarten, you can easily alter the literature for young adult readers with the assistance of the Consortium of Latin American Studies Program: Committee on Teaching and Outreach at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee listed in the resource section. They review and recognize Latin American/Caribbean/Latino fiction written in Spanish or English.

Regional cooking will be researched on the Internet. The web sites I have listed in the resource guide have links to history, tourism, literature, art, music and local cuisine. In some cases you can read the actual menu and recipes from individual restaurants. E-mail is encouraged and allows for direct interaction with Latin America. The technology available for use with early childhood students has become a great tool for classroom teachers.


To promote global awareness through an integrated curriculum model emphasizing literature, geography, music, art and science
To observe the fusion of African-American, Spanish, and Indigenous cultures in Latin America and the United States
Creating literature , art and music inspired from Latin cultures is a tool for a deeper understanding of their contributions to our global community. The danger in focusing on any one geographical area is becoming a tourist, simply viewing images. For this reason it is essential to discuss:

foreign economies and how they directly effect our region
explorers and their impact on our population
cultural origin of traditions in the U.S. (music, festivals, storytelling, art)
the use of the globe and maps as tools for locating geographical areas
impressions of the U.S. with individuals from each region of study
Equally important, during any unit of study, is to allow time for small group ‘projects’. Students given the opportunity to choose projects will develop a higher degree of interest and motivation to learn. Projects allow students, according to choice, to investigate in-depth topics related to our theme, thereby supplementing and enriching the curriculum. The object of a project is to gather information in lieu of correctly answering questions posed by teachers. Students will divide into small groups to pursue their areas of interest. Our library media specialist will assist with project groups.

Reflections in a Latin American Mirror strives not to isolate curriculum according to subject. Success in life is directly related to our ability to grasp emotional and cognitive aspects of relationships. It is essential that we begin this process in our schools. One’s love of learning is influenced by environment, emotions, application of new knowledge, and relevance of the material to one’s own life. The curriculum must therefore support integrated and diverse learning models. Literature will act as a scaffolding for our class to build on for each of these models.

The students must have opportunities to experience, discuss, accommodate and ultimately assimilate information to promote cultural literacy. We as educators are afforded the opportunity to become more diverse in our thinking , curriculum and instructional methods. Immersing the class in Latin American language, art, music and literature will enrich our community and ideally be reflected in the daily work of each student. Our two month study will take over every aspect of our room. The walls, displays and learning centers will directly reflect these images. Students will have culturally diverse role models to foster positive self images.

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Cuba: Week 1

Columbus discovered Cuba in 1492. The indigenous people, Ciboney, almost did not survive the incoming Spanish colonization. In the eighteenth century movement between Spain and its American colonies began to increase. Cuba now was a strategic location for the Spanish fleets. African slaves were imported as the labor force in Cuba due to its new status and lack of indigenous peoples. The cultural influences of the African people blended into and are strongly reflected in Cuba to this day. The rumba, a popular dance, came from Afro-Cuban roots. It is the blending of the Spanish guitar and African drums that produce this distinctive sound. The fusion of cultures also produced the bongo drum in Cuba.

Students will be introduced to the Island of Cuba as they construct bongo drums, discuss the rhythm of music and the rhythm of words. Child of the Sun is a legend that explains a natural event. The Ciboney people used this story to explain a solar eclipse. As the tale begins Sun creates humans out of his boredom and loneliness. During the creating he dances and chants in a strong native tongue. Throughout out the legend there are rhythms, such as these, in the words that resonate images in nature. The language is melodic and will be interpreted by the students through their bongo drums. Two cylindrical oatmeal containers are excellent bongos. Cut one shorter then the other and connect with a small nut and bolt.

Tortillitas Para Mama introduces short nursery rhymes in both Spanish and English. Each verse naturally sings out and encourages repetition. These verses will become a daily part of our class. We will sing them , use our instruments to accompany them and translate them into American Sign Language.

The artist Ana Mendieta (1948-1985) was born in Havana, Cuba. Ana’s parents were unable to emigrate to the United States. At the age of thirteen she and her sister were sent to the United States to be raised in an orphanage. Their Mother was able to reunite with her daughters in the mid-1960s. Mendieta became increasingly interested in the relationships between the body, spirituality and the earth. She was strongly influenced by the Afro-Cuban religion of Santeria and third world feminism. Her sculpture, “Nacida del Nilo” (Nile Born) also resonates images in nature. Her use of sand and binder on wood was part of Twentieth Century Latin American Artist exhibit at the New York Museum of Modern Art. Students will locate and use local sand and thinned glue to cover cardboard armatures. The sand sculptures will act as inspiration for writing an original legend by the class that will include accompaniment by the bongos.

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Dominican Republic/Haiti: Week 2

Haiti and the Dominican Republic comprise the Island known as Hispaniola. Christopher Columbus landed on the island in 1492 claiming it for Spain. The original inhabitants were the Arawak and Carib people, peaceful farmers and fishermen. They were exploited by the Spanish colonists, became extinct and were replaced by African slave labor. Spain had officially ceded the entire island to the French during the Treaty of Ryswijk in 1695. Black slaves worked the profitable sugar, indigo, coffee and cotton plantations in St. Domingue (Haiti) while Spanish colonists fought to regain control of Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic). Haiti would become the first independent black nation in the world in 1804 under the leadership of Toussaint L’Ouverture. Between the years of 1804 and 1844 Santo Domingo regained Spanish rule, declared independence, was taken over by the nation of Haiti and finally achieved independence becoming officially the Dominican Republic.

Civil wars and foreign intervention have plagued the island. A class system based on economics and race has also impeded the growth of both nations. Today the official language of Haiti is Creole and French with 95 percent of the population of African decent. In the Dominican Republic it is Spanish with a mix of black-African, Spanish and mestizo cultures.

In My Two Worlds, eight year old Kirsey must balance living in the Dominican Republic and New York. She does not want to choose one over the other. How Many Days to America introduces the exodus of Haitians to the shores of Miami during the Clinton administration. They must now find a balance between their heritage and new home. Each piece of non-fiction will stimulate discussion of the different worlds each of us live in. We will explore the similarities and differences in our homes and cultures. What are strategies we use to balance our own worlds. We will publish a class book entitled , Our Many Worlds.

The duality of life in Hispaniola is evident in the art, music and literature of this region. Popular masks, cojuelo diablos, worn during Carnival celebrates good over evil on the eve of Lent. The horns can be seen painted two different colors while the face is a solid color. Each of the horns represent a side of Hispaniola, the face their potential unity. Also part of Carnival is the merengue or meringue depending on your location. In the Dominican Republic the national dance, the merengue, owes its roots to Afro-Caribbean dance/music mixing with rural life. Today it is danced throughout the world, but its traditional setting is the countryside. Here you would find it accompanied by a perico ripiao, a small band playing an accordion, a drum, a guiro (grage in Haiti) and maracas. Haitians will fiercely claim that the merengue (me-reng’ga) is only a cousin to their national dance, the meringue. They believe it was brought to the Dominican Republic during the Haitian occupation of 1822.

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Puerto Rico: Week 3

In 1493 Christopher Columbus claimed Puerto Rico for Spain. The Taino were agricultural people enslaved and almost eliminated by the colonists. They were replaced on plantations and in sugar mills by black-African slaves. Because of small farmers, jibaros, that raised staple crops the slave population remained small. In 1898 Puerto Rico became part of the United States as a result of the Spanish-American War. They were not granted citizenship until 1917. The right to self govern was won in 1947 and commonwealth status attained in 1952. Social and cultural tensions between the 40 percent of Puerto Ricans that live on the U.S. mainland and the remaining 60 percent on the island has created two distinct communities. The majority of the Puerto Rican population today is of Hispanic descent.

The village of Loiza Aldea’s population comes primarily from African origins. The contributions of the African culture to the music and dance of the island is evident here and can be experienced during their festivals. Taino language , food and musical instruments also survived. Puerto Ricans still use the Taino name, Borinquen, for the island in honor of the Taino history and culture.

The Golden Flower introduces us to the Taino people. A small child walks the dry land in search of food. He finds none but catches several small seeds floating on the wind. His attention to these small pieces of nature holds the key to the land called Borinquen. This land gives them all they need to live a full life. The respect the Taino have for nature is seen in the seed necklaces crafted by the Puerto Rican people today. Seeds are never discarded but saved and strung for adornment and pleasure. Rather than ignoring seeds contained in our foods we will collect, catalogue and prepare seeds for necklaces and future planting. Soft seeds such as peas are best strung when frozen and allowed to air dry while hard seed shells such as the sunflower should be soaked in warm water to soften the outer layer.

Two pre-Columbian instruments used by the indigenous people were the guiro and maracas. Guiros were made from dried , scored long neck gourds. A metal fork was then scraped across the ridges producing a rasping sound. Gourds can also be dried for maracas. The small rounded ones most resemble the nuts from the calabash tree originally used. Cut holes in each end and allow to air dry. (Keep in mind the size of the dowel you wish to use.) This can take several weeks. For this reason collect , we cut and dry gourds during October when they are plentiful in local grocery stores. They are stored for later use . Dried seeds are put into the gourds and a stick or dowel inserted through both holes

Arnaldo Roche Rabell (1955) was born in Puerto Rico and bridges art and nature in his oil on canvas painting entitled “You Know I Am Aware”. Through an intricate process of scraping paint off the prepared canvas he created a face of leaves peering out into the world. It is part of the collection at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. We will examine how camouflage can protect living organisms while posing the question, “What is nature aware of?”. Oil crayons layered on thick paper and painted over with black tempera can allow students to explore this technique of scraping away color to produce a picture.

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Guatemala: Week 4

Pedro de Alvarado conquered this area in 1523 for Spain. Three hundred years later the people of Guatemala proclaimed their independence. Two years were spent under Mexican rule before they realized their dream. The government has primarily been a Military leadership. The United States has used its power and proximity to strong arm the Central American countries for their own gains. It has taken until 1995 for a peace accord between government , guerrilla forces and the indigenous people. Guatemala was central to the Mayan civilization. Tikal is the largest Mayan site to be escalated. Students can explore these areas through Mayan Quest on the World Wide Web. Over 50 percent of Guatemalans are of Mayan descent and the remainder are metizo or ladino.

Technology vs. craftsmanship is examined in Abuela’s Weave. Grandmother continues her tradition of storytelling within her weaving. Her granddaughter fears the machine made cloth will be far superior to their hand weaving. No one can reproduce the rich culture and history these woman share. Once we record our predictions as to the amount of time needed to weave a small bracelet, we will test our theories and report our results. We will experience weaving on large and small looms before examining hand made Guatemalan cloth . Our experience of weaving will be compared with the sunrise to sunset work done by most artisans in Guatemala.

The national music is the Marimba. It is a type of xylophone originating in Africa introduced to Central America during their enslavement. The tuned wooden bars are played with mallets or sticks. What sets the Guatemalan marimba apart from others are the carved wooden resonators. A bunt pan tapped with a mallet is a strong resonator of sound. If tilted from side to side the change in the sound waves can be easily heard. Hollow containers are resonators and can be change with the addition of water. Students in conjunction will the lesson plan, sound travels, will explore possible resonators in our environments and use them to experiment with sound.

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Mexico: Weeks 5 and 6

Evidence suggests that a hunting people lived in this area 21,000 B.C or earlier. Some of the earliest and most advanced civilizations began in this region. Mayan, Aztec and Toltec settled this area. Their descendants still thrive in modern Mexico. Hernan Cortez battled the Aztecs and in 1521 took control of the land for Spain. Metizo, Spanish and Native American (Mayan, Aztec, Toltec) are the largest groups in Mexico today. In 1814 they regained their independence. The desire of the United Stated to expand westward and the annexation of Texas were major causes of the Mexican war with the United States. California and New Mexico were ceded to the United States and the southern boarder of Texas became the Rio Grande. The Mexican government received $15 million.

Visiting relatives in Mexico becomes a journey of enlightenment for Carlos and his sisters in Going Home. They realize the time they have spent away from their birth place has not changed the love they have for their home and their family. In A Day’s Work grandfather must depend on his English speaking grandson for guidance and work. We will revisit the theme of duality we discussed in Living in Two Worlds. After sharing Gathering the Sun we will investigate where our fruits and vegetables are grown and how they make it to our local grocery stores. Do small and large grocers get their fruit and vegetables from the same origin? Why? Why not?

Diego Rivera’s (1886-1957) wish for art and politics to be viewed and appreciated by everyday working people has enriched many lives. He used a method of painting called fresco. It is the application of water colors onto wet plaster. He painted them on community building for maximum exposure to the public. We will endeavor to create a mural rich in storytelling and politics of our school and community as did Mr. Rivera. We will display it in a common area for the entire community to enjoy. The lively mariachi music of Mexico and the panpipes of the Andes will assist us in the creative process.

The rich images created by his partner Frieda Kahlo (1907-1954) suffered lifelong illnesses beginning with polio. A major bus accident that left her bed ridden. It was during her convalescence that she began to paint. Her painting were largely self portraits mixing her inner pain, turmoil and rich Mexican heritage. Her Self Portrait with Monkeys from 1943 is a blend of inner strength and cultural beauty. We will use this piece of art to begin self portraits of ourselves with rich cultural backgrounds. What are each of us proud of ? The display will include artists notes.

We will study symmetry and its applications to design as we recreate Mexican amante paper cutting. Amante paper cutting originated it’s name from the bark of the amante tree. Strips were boiled in water and ash until soft. They were then layered on top of each other and pounded together with stones. It may be white or brown in color and is a Pre-Conquest art form. It was used for paper and clothing. Today it is used to cut out magical shapes that protect crops, ward off evil and protect homes. The original texture can be recreated with brown paper bags. Fold the paper in half and experiment with cutting techniques. Once a piece is finished crumple it up but do not tear it. Re-flatten the paper and iron between two pieces of wax paper. The texture of the paper and creases will add richness to the cut out. Mount it and display

Observational skills will be honed as we investigate Mexican amate paper painting Natural scenes of village life or local birds and animals are painted with brilliant color on the imitation amante bark. Only the figure and a few plants are painted in the center of the paper. The natural beauty of the amante is left as the background. Some have geometric boarders. The design can be penciled onto the paper and then filled in. A small amount of dish detergent added to acrylic paints will allow it to adhere to the waxed surface. Scenes of our community will be translated into this art form. We will each select local plants and or animals to include in our painting.

Pottery is used in all cultures for survival and decoration. Students will compare the use and design of 19th and 20th century Mexican pottery from the Tonala and Metapec regions. The students in conjunction with the lesson plan, contemporary Mexican arts, will be able to appreciate the time invested in building and firing hand made pieces.

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Chile: Week 7

Over 90 percent of the population is metizo. The Spanish and the native Araucanian blended early in Chile’s history. Several settlements were established in 1540 and a stormy relationship was established with Spain until they won their independence in 1818. In 1970 Salvador Allende was elected President. He began moving the country towards socialism. Severe economic problems, polarized citizens and lack of foreign support contributed to a military takeover in 1973. Allende committed suicide. The Pinochet regime imposed strict censorship, banned political parties and ruled with force. 1989 saw the first free presidential election since 1970. Since then Chile’s rapid growth and restoration of democratic institutions has attracted foreign investment.

Pablo Neruda (1904-1973) was born Neftali Ricardo Reyes y Basoalto in Parral, Chile. He began writing poetry in his teens. He became known for speaking to the people with his earthy expressionist style. In 1971 he won the Nobel Peace Prize for literature and the Lenen Peace Prize. The imagery in Ode to My Socks is strong. The sequence of events following “Socks” is a dreamer’s paradise, just what every child could understand. We will attempt to recreate that ride through illustrating the text and performing the piece with percussion instruments. “Spring” will serve as an introduction to the science and art of our seasons. Our challenge will be to create verse for each season. Can we think of the seasons from animal perspectives?

Gabriela Mistral (1889-1957) was born Lucila Godoy de Alcayaga in Vicuna, Chile. She was the first Latin American Woman to win the Nobel Prize in literature. Mistral was a teacher and worked to reform the Mexican public educational system. Eight Puppies (Ocho Perritos) will be presented with stick puppets to help the children visualize the azaleas, banana plants and coyote. Students will be invited to share their descriptions of favorite animals and act out the movements they attribute to them.

Roberto Sebastian Antonio Matta Echaurren (1911) was a painter born in Santiago, Chile. He was influenced by Marcel Duchamp’s exploration of movement and process. In the late 1940’s Matta broke with the surrealists and moved towards situationalists, settling in Paris. Matta became much more political in his painting during the 1960s and 70s. His tempura on canvas,“ The Spherical Roof Around Our Tribe”, reflects great movement. We will discuss his use of the word “tribe” and how we could communicate “our tribe” on canvas. An over sized canvas will be stretched by the students and paint applied. Once our painting is completed we will describe ourselves for a guide to the viewers.

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Interactive Exhibit: Week 8

We will turn our class into an interactive exhibit of Latin America, as well as a vehicle for our multi media displays. Families will not only support our research but have the opportunity to celebrate and experience it with us. Our ‘Mirrors’ exhibit will be open for tours by fellow Edgewood students and families. All participants will have the opportunity to:

Share Our Library Of Literature And Poetry

Recreate Latin American Art
Amante Paper Cutting (Mexico)

Weaving (Central American)

Experience Our Newly Published Works
Students will be able to view four works ,written and produced by the students, on video tape. Each segment will reflect the rich Latin American influence we shared together. They will include :

A Folktale

Original Dance and Movement using guiros, conga, bongo and maracas

Art Demonstration

Interpretive Poetry

View Art Exhibits
Artists will act as inspiration and immersion, mirroring images more traditionally seen through Latin American Eyes.

Create Music, Movement And Dance With Traditional Instruments
Flutes (Mexico)

Maracas (Caribbean Islands)

Bongo (Cuba)

Conga (Dominican Republic)

Participate In Spanish/American Sign Singing

Excite Their Palettes With Regional Foods And Guess The Origins Using a Topographical Map And Globe.

Lesson Plan: Duality Masks

Duality Masks relies heavily on the following intellegences:





Time Frame: This lesson comes during week 2
Objective: Students will be able to use facial measurements to determine their mask size.
Materials: Tinfoil, masking tape, paper mache, torn brown paper, paint
Background: Students measure their faces to produce the appropriate sized armature for the mask (figure 1). Paper mache over tinfoil armatures establishes a strong surface for painting. Brown paper bags torn into strips is an extremely durable covering. Once dried draw a black line down the center of the mask (figure 2). At this point the students will paint scenes that symbolize two parts of their lives that are very different. If acrylics are not available mix a small amount of glue into the tempera paint to produce a faux acrylic. The effect is inexpensive and durable.
(figure available in print form)

Measure from the top of your forehead to just under the chin
Measure from ear to ear
Log onto graph paper and connect them with arcs
Mold tinfoil into the shape measured and build it up to the depth of one’s face
Apply brown paper strips, paper mache mix and allow to dry
Cut eye holes, draw center line using permanent marker and paint
Assessment: The teacher uses direct observation. Students and teacher share their finish masks and discuss construction problems.

Lesson Plan: Sound Travels

Sound Travels relies heavily on the following intelligences:




Time Frame: This lesson comes during week 4
Objective: Students will understand that sound moves.
Objective: Students will understand that sound can be identified by its pitch, loudness (or intensity), and quality.
Materials: Bunt pan, mallet, a quart, a gallon , a five gallon plastic container and chart paper
Procedure: Students will log all sounds they can identify in the classroom. The list will be organized by what is easy to hear and difficult to hear. The teacher will walk around the meeting with a bunt pan held by the center stem.
Once the students attention is focused the pan will be tapped with the mallet. A clear tone is immediately sent through the air. By moving the pan from left to right the sound will be heard at different intensities as it moves at varying degrees of freedom. Each of the plastic containers are hit with the mallet with the opening covered and uncovered. The quality of the sound is changed dramatically. One child will set a beat pattern while the class chants a rhyme. Have the children chant it in high pitched voice and a low pitched voice.

These activities will act as an introduction to possible reasons we organized our classroom sounds as easy or difficult to hear. Each category will now be reorganized by pitch, loudness and quality. Resonators will be collected from home school and nature.

Assessment: The teacher uses direct observation. Students and teacher share their predictions and charted information. The students will now set up a sound leaning center based on their experience.

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Lesson Plan: Contemporary Mexican Arts

Crafting pottery relies heavily on the following intelligences:




The creation of non-fiction guides describing construction and appreciation of the art forms with historical and cultural background will rely heavily on the following intellgences:




The arts can become a bridge to the past and present lives of Mexican people. The Mexican people produced pottery and figurines for daily survival up to the 19th century. The 20th century has created a market for the rich designs and quality craftsmanship. These items can be reproduced in classroom settings in integrated curriculum units.

Time Frame: This lesson comes during week 8
Objective: Students will compare the methods and cultural significance of each art form in the 19th century and 20th centuries.
Objective: Students will experience and create contemporary pottery based on Mexican culture and traditions.
Materials: 10 bricks per ring (4 pieces of pottery per ring), a sheet of metal 2’x2’, clay, saw dust and bone dry pots and figures from week 6
Background: Pots are built by the coil and pinch methods. Once they are formed to the desired size and shape they are leather hard and ready for carving in designs. The symbols used are usually simple and based on nature. At this stage pieces can be painted with slips or natural dye. Air dry the pottery one to two weeks. It is now greenware and ready to be fired.
Both Tonala and Metapec in Mexico have been central locations for the production of functional, spiritual and artistic pottery. Tonala is know for its animal figures, brightly painted. Metapec is know for their suns, a symbol of life giving energy. Each piece is made by hand and fired in wood or oil brick kiln. Artists in Mexico fire the pieces on their property. The pieces are now ready to paint. Chromatic acrylic paints are the most brilliant and longest lasting.
Procedure: Outdoor Kiln A shallow pit is dug for the firing. A metal grate supported by tin cans for air circulation is set in the pit. Pots are gently stacked on the grate. A branch and clay chimney is built over the pit or a metal sheet is put over them. At this point a wood fire is stoked for several hours. If a black finish is desired horse manure is thrown into the fire to create a reduction firing . A reduction firing lacks oxygen thus producing a black finish on the pots. Pots fired this way are porous. This allowed for water placed in them to stay cool through natural evaporation.
Wood fires would not be conducive to most city dwellings. For this reason you could have a saw dust firing. The firing also will produce porous black finished pieces. A class of thirty two students could fit their hand built pieces in an eight ring kiln. Place ten bricks in a square configuration on a dry surface such as concrete. Build up the walls. It is important to alternate each row of bricks to insure a sound structure. Clay is smoothed into any crevices. Place 3 inches of saw dust in the bottom and place your first layer of pots. Cover them with more saw dust and begin another layer. Repeat this process until all the pots are loaded. Ignite the sawdust and cover with the sheet metal cover. Newspaper is a good starter for the kiln. The sawdust should burn out in 24 hours.

(figure available in print form)
Remove the pieces from the kiln and smooth with a cloth.

Assessment: The teacher uses direct observation. Students and teacher share their construction book, finished pieces and reflect on why these art forms have not only survived but are a source of income to the Mexican people.

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Annotated Teacher Bibliography

DeSpain, Pleasant. Thirty-Three Multicultural Tales To Tell. August House Inc., Little Rock Arkansas, 1993.

A Celebration of ‘interconnectedness’ of people, animals, cultures and countries. Nonsexist, action orientated. Strong, intelligent women, men, boys and girls with clever animals fill the pages.

Geringer, Karl . Instruments in the History of Western Music. Oxford, 3d ed., 1978.

Hafer, Jan C. and Wilson, Robert M. Come Sign With Us. Gallaudet University Press, Wahington, D.C, 1996.

An excellent introduction to the language of American Sign in both English and Spanish. The lessons included are appropriate for K-3.

La Belle, Thomas J. and Ward, Christopher R. Multiculturalism And Education: Diversity and Its Impact on Schools and Society. State University of New York Press, Albany, 1994.

Exploration of ethnicity, race, class and education as they effect group identity, status and integration.

Landau,Elliott D., Epstein, Sherrie Landau. and Stone, Ann Plaat. Child Development Through Literature. Prentice-Hall, Inc., Englewoods Cliffs, New Jersey, 1972.

Social, psychological and literary aspects of our written language and how they impact on child development through adolescence.

Mazer, Anne. American Street. Persea Books, New York, New York, 1993.

Multicultural anthology addressing culture and identify in the United States.

Milford, Susan. Hands Around the World: 365 Creative Ways To Build Cultural Awareness & Global Respect. Williamson Publishing, Charlotte, Vermont, 1992.

It includes organizations, suppliers and an annotated bibliography of related books.

Moore, Robin. Awakening the Hidden Storyteller: How To Build A Storytelling Tradition In Your Family. Shambhala Publication, Boston, Mass. 1991.

Meaningful ways to bring together families, connecting us with ancestral roots and preserving cultures.

Neruda, Pablo. Translated by Mitchell, Stephen. Full Woman, Fleshly Apple, Hot Moon. Harper Collins, New York, 1997.

Selected poems in the original Spanish with English translations.

Powell, Richard J. Black Art and Culture in the 20th Century. Thames and Hudson, New York, New York, 1997.

Black Culture is both the subject and context of the art. The emphasis of this book is on black cultural themes.

Roberts, John Storm. The Latin Tinge: The Impact of Latin American Music on the United States. Oxford, 1979.

Rasmussen, Waldo. Latin American Artists of the Twentieth Century. The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1993.

Published version of the Latin American Artists of the Twentieth Century exhibition organized by Waldo Rasmussen June 6-September 7, 1993.

Schuman, Jo Miles. Art From Many Hands. Davis Publications, Inc., Worchester, Massachusettes 1981.

Multicultural art projects including step-by-step instructions and historical information. Categorized by geographical regions.

Shartrand, Angela. Supporting Latino Families: Lessons From Exemplary Programs Harvard Press

Skidmore, Thomas E. and Smith, Peter H. Modern Latin America. Oxford Press Inc., New York, New York, 1997.

Brief yet succinct interpretation and analyzation of an immense subject. Organized by country with central themes to include European-New World interaction, racial mixtures, military takeovers and U.S. interventions.

Watts, Steve, FRGS consultant. Make it Work: MAPS! World Book Inc., Chicago, Illinois, 1996.

A hands on approach to geography with models, experiments and practical projects.

Annotated Student Bibliography

Ada, Alma Flor., translated by Rosa Zubizarreta. Gathering the Sun. Lothrop, Lee and Shepard Books, New York, New York, 1997.

Twenty eight poems written in both Spanish and English reveal the richness of the lives of field and orchard workers. Twenty eight poems, one for each letter of the alphabet. Mr. Silva’s illustrations will take back to his own childhood as a farm worker.

Arnold, Sandra. Child Of The Sun: A Cuban Legend. Troll Communications L.L.C., Mahwah, New Jersey, 1995.

Sun is lonely and greedy. He wants to have the entire sky and all his creations to himself. He must therefore trick Moon and steal away with his grandchild.

The Cuban folktale explains solar eclipses result from Sun’s antics.

Bunting, Eve. Going Home. Harper/Collins, 1996.

Carlos and his family are going home for Christmas. They will drive from California to Mexico. Although born their, Carlos has no memories of his parents home. Along the journey he and his siblings begin to understand the strong ties of family and heritage. Most importantly they realize that their parents largest concern is a future full of hope for their children and parents.

Bunting, Eve. A Day’s Work. Clarion , 1994.

Francisco waits with his Grandfather as vans and trucks come in search of workers. Grandfather has just arrived and does not speak English. Fransico wants to help him as his translator. In his excitement and desire to work, Fransico lies to Ben, the gardener. Ben hires Grandfather thinking he has experience gardening , as told by the young Fransico. After Successfully pulling up a bank of new seedlings and leaving behind only weeds, Ben is openly upset. Grandfather realizes that his grandson has lied and explains to him that they must make things right. They will return the next day to replant the seedlings and pull up the weeds properly. Grandfather refuses any money until the work is completed properly. Ben is satisfied and Francisco learns a valuable lesson.

Castaneda, Omar S. Abuela’s Weave. Lee &Low Books Inc., 1993.

Abuela and her granddaughter are weavers in Guatemala. They practice the traditional methods of their native culture. Abuela’s granddaughter fears that once at the marcado they will be over shadowed and mocked by the vendors of machine woven cloth. Much to her surprise, they are admired for their fine craftsmanship and creative patterns.

Cisneros, Sandra. The House on Mango Street. Vintage Books, New York, New York, 1984.

Vignettes reflecting life growing up Latina in urban Chicago.

Dorros, Arthur. Isla. Dutton Children’s Books, 1995.

Flight allows family members to realize their dreams and protect their heritage.

Griengo, Margot C., Bucks, Betsy L., Gilbert, Sharon S., Kinball, Laurel H. Tortillitas Para Mama and Other Nursery Rhymes. Henry Holt & Co., New York, New York, 1981.

Nursery Rhymes in the original Spanish with English translations. Extremely melodic. Inviting illustrations.

Gordon, Ginger. My Two Worlds. Clarion Books, New York, New York, 1993.

Kirsey is eight years old and lives in both New York and the Dominican Republic. She loves both cultures and is happy not to have to choose one over the other.

Jaffe, Nina. The Golden Flower. Simon & Schusster, New York, New York, 1996.

The myths surrounding the origins of our earth have long been favorites among active imaginations. We will begin our own myth surrounding the origins of a child selected topic for a class book. Also; What is the importance of myth in society?

Jekyll, Walter. I Have A News. William Morrow & Co. New York, New York, 1994.

Rhymes chosen by Neil Philip from Mr. Jekyll’s Jamaican Song Book and Story of 1907. Bright detailed illustrations.

Madrigal, Antonio Hernandez. The Eagle and the Rainbow: Timeless Tales from Mexico. Fulcrum Publishing, Fulcrum, Colorado, 1997.

Stories and legends of the great tribes of Mexico as related to Mr.Madrigal by his great-grandmother.

Mike, Jan. Juan Bobo and the Horse of Seven Colors. Troll Communication L.L.C. Mahwah, New Jersey, 1995.

A Puerto Rican legend. Juan Bobo is the wise fool who inadvertently wins the favor of the Princess through laughter.

Mitchell, Rita Phillips. Hue Boy. Penguin USA. New York, New York, 1993.

Hue Boy becomes sharply aware of his small stature as his schoolmates began to tower over him. He searches for cures and wisdom on his Island village. No matter how many fruits and vegetables he ingests, herbs he bathes with or hours he spends stretching he just is not growing. Hue Boy is extremely disheartened until his father returns home. He is not only proud, but very tall. He takes Hue Boy by the hand and walks through the village returning to his son a sense of security and pride.

Mohr, Nicholasa and Martorell, Antonio. The Song of El Coqui: And Other Tales From Puerto Rico. Viking. New York, New York, 1995.

Three folktales reflecting Spanish, African and Indigenous influences in the Puerto Rican culture. Equally rich are the text and the illustrations.

Ober, Hal , Carol Ober. How Music Came to the World.: An Ancient Mexican Myth. Houghton Mifflin Company Press, Boston, Massechusettes, 1994.

Music is brought to the earth from Sun’s house by sky and wind gods. The text is augmented by vibrant illustrations and author/illustrator notes.

Orozco, Jose-Luis. De Colores And Other Latin American Folk Songs For Children.

Dutton, New York, New York, 1994.

A collection of songs in Spanish with English translations. Songs origins and related games are included. Excellent diverse illustrations.

Palazzo-Craig, Janet. Why Owl comes Out At Night. Troll Communications L.L.C., Mahwah, New Jersey, 1996

Haitian folktale explaining why owls come out at night. Part of the first-start legend series.

Palazzo-Craig, Janet. Why Possum is Gray. Troll Communications L.L.C., Mahwah, New Jersey, 1996

Mexican Folktale from the Cora people in the tickster tradition. A meek Opossum must use her wits to outsmart Iguana!

Presilla, Maricel E., Mola: Cuna Life Stories and Art. Henry Holt and Company, New York, New York, 1996.

The photography of the mola art from the San Blas Islands of Panama is breathtaking. The text explains the customs and traditions of the Cuna Indian woman. Each panel has a story to tell and a willing audience to listen.

Ramirez, Michael Rose. The Little Ant/La Hormiga Chiquita. Rizzoli International Publications, Inc., New York, New York, 1995.

Little ant has a broken let and want restitution. So off to the judge she goes to make sense of her injury. Little ant must recognize that some things in life just happen and no one is to blame.

Rohmer, Harriet. El Sombrero Del Tio Nacho. Children’s Book Press, 1989.

Uncle Nacho will not give up his old , beat up hat! His niece stops at nothing to persuade him he needs a new hat. Initially he has great fears that none of his friends and family will recognize him. Change is hard to accept at any age, but eventually Uncle Nacho accepts the new hat. He accepts change.

Rowe, Christine. The Children’s Book of Pottery. Bath Press, London, England 1989.

A guide to tools, clay, handbuilding, construction, glazing, and firing. The photographs and diagrams compliment the text.

Rojany, Lisa. The Magic Feather: A Jamaican Legend. Troll Associates, Mahwah, New Jersey, 1995.

The island is void of color and light. The only hope is to secure a feather from the dreaded Macaw. Using her wit and intelligence, Solidae takes on this great adventure. If she succeeds the Island will once again be bathed in glorious light and color.

Venezia, Mike. Diego Rivera. Children’s Press, 1994.

The life and art of Diego Rivera

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Software exploring the history, language, music and geography of the regions will be used daily in our technology center.

All in One Language Fun


The American Sign Language :Multi Language

____Harper Collins

Musical Instruments: Instruments, music, history and world atlas

____Microsoft Home

3-D Atlas

____Creative Wonders

The Way Things Work

____DK Multimedia

Carmen Sandiego Junior Detective Edition


Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego


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Web Sites/Resources

Consortium of Latin American Studies Program

Committee on Teaching and Outreach initiated a yearly children’s and young adult book award and recommendation list. Authentic Latin/Caribbean/Latino literature.

www.uwm.edu/dept/CLA/outreachamericas. html

Journey to the Past: Explore Ancient Hispanic Cultures

This includes a link to Mayan Quest , an interactive student site.


University of Texas LANIC: Latin American Network Information Center

A directory to links for research by specific country. Food links!


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Contents of 1997 Volume I | Directory of Volumes | Index | Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute

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