Students celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

Oct. 3, 2017

Destiny Duffey’s home is pretty full of family – so much so that the 7-year-old’s parents are considering moving.

But where to? Destiny has an idea.

“I’m gonna ask my mom if we can move to Columbia,” Destiny chirped nonchalantly.

“Me too,” her friend and classmate Alex Somers, 8, said. “I really wanna go! Really, really, really really. It’s so cool. They live in buildings in Columbia. So maybe if I go, I can live in a building. Right?”

The duo are part of a small group that were assigned Columbia for a research project centered on National Hispanic Heritage Month.

Each year, Americans observe Hispanic Heritage Month from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15, by celebrating histories, cultures and contributions made by Hispanic people.

“We felt it was important to do something for Hispanic Heritage Month because we want students to respect and understand a variety of cultures, including their own, as well as new cultures that they may not be as familiar with,” said Gina Bikowicz and Caitlyn Toper, teachers at Tecler Elementary. “We want to foster their understanding of cultural diversity and accepting differences in one another.”

Ms. Toper and Ms. Bikowicz’s class worked in collaborative groups to research assigned Hispanic countries. Students used the Chromebooks to gather information, listen to their country’s national anthem and see pictures of their country. 

Specifically, they researched their country’s flag, location and geography, climate and weather, special foods, and some students also researched animals. They recorded their findings in their group project packet and shared their findings with the class.

While some students imagined themselves living happily in their assigned country, some students decided it just wasn’t for them.

Kassidy Carter, 8, was asked if she would like to move to Bolivia, a landlocked country in South America that experiences all seasons, some drastically.

“Nah,” she said. “I’m more of a summer girl.”