DMAE Celebrates Latino Heritage Month

Latino Heritage Month ran from September 15, 2020 to October 15, 2020 and DMAE held a glorious week-long celebration, even though it was all online. The Latino Heritage Committee in charge of the event created various ways for students to embrace Latino culture for three days. There was cooking, dancing Salsa, and varied videos related to Latino Heritage Month for students to watch in class and on their own time. Some speakers included Latin Grammy nominee Juan Frías a.k.a Brasa. The event was a learning experience for everyone and was memorable to many.

The event made me feel really good. I felt recognized and the fact that we were able to share some of our culture was amazing.

— Shyanne Calloway

“The event made me feel really good. I felt recognized and the fact that we were able to share some of our culture was amazing,” sophomore Shyanne Calloway said.

The Latino Heritage Committee had to overcome the challenge of organizing such a big event, especially since it was the first time organizing an event like this virtually. However, their weekly meetings, endless persistence and learning about each other made the event meaningful. 

“I think the virtual world allows us to see people’s strengths,” explained Rosemary Seitel, one of the administrators who organized the event. 

The Latino Heritage Committee included teachers whose talents were previously not known, such as Tucker Scheld, who organized making the informative videos on Latin Heritage. His talents and those of other teachers will make it easier for the Committee to plan the event next year. 

“It took many Friday afternoons after a full day of teaching, weekends, and emails. It’s a challenge organizing school events,” noted Mariette Ng, another DMAE administrator who was on the Committee.

Additionally, the event also attempted to highlight Latin fine art by inviting students to be enriched in different concepts, such as cubism and Latin folk art. For instance, cubism, invented by Spanish artist Pablo Piccaso, is a technique in which an artwork appears multi-dimensional and composed of geometric shapes. Although most of the aimed concepts were never explored in the event, a few students did get to learn about and design Mexican sugar skulls to honor the Mexican holiday of the Day of the Dead. Students were guided by art instructors Mauricio Rodriguez and Grace Frangiosa and encouraged to share their finished pieces on padlet upon completion.

“I enjoyed creating the sugar skull and coloring it. It was really fun,” senior Bibi Khan commented.

Learning about the beautiful art inclined the students to cherish Latin culture as a part of themselves, something that will stay with them for life. Even though it’s difficult to celebrate as a school virtually, the organizers and students made Latino Heritage Month informational and fun. The art department helped balance teaching important Latin history while having activities that enabled creative expression.

 “I think it’s important for us as people, as human beings, to be able to step into someone’s shoes and see cultures from a different perspective and embrace differences,” Ms. Seitel said.