Spanish Language Program Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month

For Hispanic Heritage Month, from September 15 to October 15, the Spanish Language Program is introducing students to different areas of culture on and off-campus.

The Spanish II classes are celebrating Cuba this month. They're listening to the music of the Buena Vista Social Club and Celia Cruz. And the Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica decorated the Library in honor of this month.

Ms. Alcala brought her Spanish III class to help with the display by teaching them how to make Fiesta flowers. Her students also helped prepare quotes from famous artists, scientists, and athletes. One of their favorite quotes was from the acclaimed author Julia Alvarez: "The point is not to pay back kindness but to pass it on."

In Mr. Bruton's Spanish V class, an important theme is to constantly be "searching under the surface." His class recently watched and studied the 1980s movie "El Norte" about two Guatemalan migrants who make their way to Los Angeles. The students then went on a field trip to the Holocaust Museum of Houston to see Withstand: Latinx Art in Times of Conflict, which features the artwork of contemporary regional artists and their depictions of opportunity, justice, assimilation, freedom, violence, and human rights. Mr. Bruton and his students enjoyed lunch together at a Pupusería, which serves traditional Salvadoran food.

Leana Greene, Spanish V student, adds, "Throughout my four years of EHS Spanish courses, being able to go to the Holocaust Museum's exhibit, Withstand: Latinx, was an experience unlike any other. During my visit, I saw pieces of work that described emotions I was unable to put into words, and yet these artists have managed to make them into artwork. I'd never seen artwork that spoke to me the way these pieces did."

Alex Bruton, Department Chair adds, "As an activity that is part of a Spanish class, field trips like this one are an example of how we use language to break down or minimize unjust barriers that divide. As students learn another language, they gain a crucial ingredient to reach a deeper understanding of both the world around us and the world beyond us."