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Exploring Hispanic/Latino/Latinx Changemakers in Library

Hispanic Heritage Month was an opportunity for students of all ages to examine America’s rich Hispanic history and learn about some of the Hispanic/Latino/Latinx individuals who have made an indelible mark on the U.S. – including in Library class, where students engaged in discussions about the importance of celebrating the contributions of these communities year-round, and some pursued independent research into changemakers of Hispanic/Latino/Latinx heritage.

Our youngest Library students in 2nd Grade learned about – and listened to – the music of Juan García Esquivel, while 3rd Graders learned about Mexican dancer Amalia Hernández, and both grades enjoyed read-alouds about Frida Kahlo. Students in 4th and 5th Grade were introduced to José Guadalupe Posada and his calaveras art as a group, and worked independently to apply their digital research skills by reading about the life and work of one changemaker of their choice.

After reading about their subject in Epic, students recorded their learning in Google Forms and shared their reflections on why each changemaker should be celebrated. Enjoy some quotes from these young researchers below:

“Frida [Kahlo] should be celebrated because she did what she wanted to do and never let anything get in her way even when her husband died and she was filled with sadness she painted pictures of her crying instead of actually crying. And that is inspiring to me.”

“[Ellen Ochoa] is a great astronaut and she's brave.”

“[Laurie Hernandez] should be celebrated as a changemaker because she perseveres. For example, when she got 21st place at the US Classic she did not give up, she kept going. She also is a great model for Hispanic kids who want to become gymnasts.”

“I think Roberto Clemente is celebrated as a changemaker because he proved to people that if you never give up you can do anything.”

“Cristiano Ronaldo should be celebrated as a changemaker because he has made a lot of big charity efforts and is an amazing soccer player.”

“[Lin-Manuel Miranda] started several charities to benefit immigrants and created one of the coolest musicals of all time.”

“[Dolores Huerta] helped a lot of people by leading a boycott that got the farmers to get paid a lot more.”

“Diego [Rivera] is a changemaker because he celebrated the special parts of Mexico and celebrated Mexicans.”

“I think [Lin Manuel-Miranda] should be considered a changemaker because he wanted everyone to see that if you live in the U.S, you are a part of the United States.”

“I think Amalia [Hernandez] should be celebrated as a changemaker because she did a lot to the dance world. That includes opening up a dance school, choreographing ballet folklórico, and much more.”