This is how to raise your kids to be #ProudLatinos
Hispanic Heritage Month is in full swing and although in my house we celebrate our Latino culture all year long, this is a great time to remind your kids where their ancestors come from and why our traditions should be passed along. While this may be easier for some families than for others, the truth is that you don't have to go crazy trying to maintain our culture alive so that your kids can be #ProudLatinos.
Here are 5 easy ways that can help you make sure your kids learn about our culture:
1. Food: ¡A comer! That's what my dad used to say whenever he was done cooking and he was ready for us to get together to devour his food. While I'm not a huge cook myself, there are a handful of typical Peruvian dishes I like to make on a regular basis. The same thing goes for my Puerto Rican husband who can make a mean lechón. As I'm cooking, I love to tell my kids what I'm making and why, and I often take the opportunity to talk about my dad, their abuelo--whom they never met.
2. Family: If I were to use one word to describe what it means to be Latino it would be familia. Being Latino means we have big families, full of abuelos and aunts, uncles, primos, godparents, etc., and all of them are some how involved in your life. Passing this value on to your children should be one of the easiest things to do since all you need is to spend time with them--which you probably already do--and have some fun.
3. Music: I think that the best part about Latin music is the amazing variety we have, from rancheras to cumbias to rock en español there's something for everyone. In my house, music is part of our everyday life and a get-together or birthday is never a party unless there's some Latin music blaring from the speakers. Let the music play and teach your kids to dance salsa or talk to them about the musicians they're listening to, so they too can be proud of their heritage!
4. Traditions/Cultural Events: If you live in a city where there's a large Latino presence, you'll have no problems finding tons of cultural events in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. But even if you don't, you can ask your local library to see if they're doing anything. If not, take it upon yourself to teach your kids about specific traditions right at home. In this digital era, all you need is access to the Internet.
5. Language: I'm a huge proponent of bilingualism. Not only because of the proven benefits of speaking more than one language, but also because I think it's one of the best ways to pass our culture down to our children. So, regardless of your own Spanish fluency, make sure you're exposing your kids to as much of this beautiful language as possible.
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