Students celebrate “Day of the Dead”

Riley Williamson, Staff Writer

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Olivia Leon’s Spanish classes experienced the culture of Spanish-speaking countries last week by celebrating “Dia de los Muertos,” also known as “The Day of the Dead.”

This ritual took place in Leon’s classroom starting on Wednesday, Oct. 31, through Friday, Nov. 2.

However, Leon’s class has been studying this topic for a while. The class first watched the movie “Coco,” which is based on the Day of the Dead.

“We were inspired by the movie to create the altar,” Leon said.

The students created the altar by themselves, bringing in what was necessary to have it completed like real and fake flowers, candles and pan de muerto. Students also had an opportunity to write a note and place it on the altar. The note was to any one in their life that had passed. Whatever the individual wanted to remind their loved one, they could write on the note.

“Like, dear grandma/grandpa I miss you very much, I wish you the best there or I’m very proud of what you did in life and I’m very happy that I had the opportunity to spend time with you,” Leon said, of examples of what students could write on their notes.

Although the movie and altar are two ways to experience and learn about the celebration, students also read an article about the topic and came up with question they could ask the class, in Spanish. This gave them a better understanding of the Day of the Dead.

Another outlook they had on the celebration was from Leon, who grew up celebrating the Day of the Dead with her family.

“Growing up… of course we would go… to the cemetery. And we would bring flowers, candles [and] food [to the altar],” Leon said.

She continues to celebrate the Day of the Dead today, wanting her family to have the same experiences she had.

But learning about the Day of the Dead is not entirely over for the students. Now Leon plans to have her class compare the Mexican celebration, Day of the Dead, to other culture’s holidays to see any similarities.

“I hope [the students] learned that we [should] appreciate the people we have now, alive. And also the people who of course… have died,” Leon said.

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