I’m a little late to post this, but it’s not too late for your classes! While I’m very much a person who makes sure that I cover different cultural groups all year and not just in ‘the’ month that is set aside, I still think it’s important to cover them in that month. September 15-October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month in the United States. Here are 3 books you should check out for your classes right now! (Full disclosure: some affiliate links but it won’t change your price. No pressure!)

1. Tito Puente Mambo King / Rey del Mambo

Author Monica Brown, Illustrator Rafael López
ISBN: 978-0061227837

This book is bilingual and features Ernesto Antonio Puente (“Tito”), the sone of Puerto Ricans who grew up in Spanish Harlem.
The author has some awesome worksheets on her website that you can find here.
Listening: Oye Como Va (Official Video)
Buy the Book on Amazon
Enjoy this trailer narrated by the author and illustrator.

Tito Puente on Sesame Street

2. My Name is Celia / Me llama Celia: The Life of Celia Cruz / la vida de Celia Cruz

Author Monica Brown, Illustrator Rafael López
ISBN: 978-0873588720
Buy the Book on Amazon.

Another bilingual book, this one focuses on Celia Cruz. Her work in salsa makes this Cuban singer an important artist for kids to know.
Listening: La India & Celia Cruz
Online Smithsonian Exhibit on Celia Cruz

Author Read Aloud in English and Spanish

3. Ada’s Violin: The Story of the Recycled Orchestra of Paraguay

Author Susan Hood, Illustrator Sally Wren Comport
ISBN: 978-1481430951
Buy the Book on Amazon.

This book is a true story about how a small village in Paraguay made music out of trash.
Listening: The Recycled Orchestra performs after screening of (Landfill Harmonic)

Landfill Harmonic (Ada is pictured at the beginning.)

Recycled Orchestra Documentary


I hope that these three books and listening ideas can help you celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with some really awesome music.

Hope this has been helpful!

Melissa

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