Hispanic Heritage Month Educational Resources
Hispanic Heritage Month starts on September 15th, and runs through October 15th. This year’s theme is Latinos: Driving Prosperity, Power, and Progress in America. The celebration starts on September 15th because that was the day that many Central American countries gained their independence. Like many of our month-long celebrations, Hispanic Heritage Month began as a week-long celebration in 1968. In 1988, President Ronald Reagan declared that Hispanic Heritage would now be celebration over the course of a month, starting on September 15th. To learn about Hispanic Heritage Month, check out Hispanic Heritage Month Unboxed. In this downloadable lesson you’ll learn about the history of Hispanic Heritage Month, learn about important Hispanic Americans, and get hands on with recipes and crafts. Explore the resources below for even more on Hispanic Heritage.
- Wonder why we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month? Check out this post from the Smithsonian for the Top 8 Reasons How and Why We Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month.
- Explore the Smithsonian Institutes Resources on Hispanic Heritage Month. Explore traditional clothing, music, art, and so much more. Plus, explore the Molino Gallery at the American History Museum, and learn about the new National Museum of the American Latino currently being built.
- The National Endowment for the Humanities has a teacher resource guide with links to lesson plans, discussion questions, and many ways to incorporate Hispanic Heritage into your curriculums.
- Hispanic Heritage Month at the National Archives
- Kids and adult programming focusing on Hispanic Heritage from PBS
- Virtual and in-person Hispanic Heritage Month programming from the National Museum of the American Latino
Gets Hands-On and Make Some Delicious Empanadas. Download a FREE recipe card here!
Empanadas are a Hispanic dish, that made its way from Spain to Latin America. The ingredients, cooking style, and taste varies as much as the cultures and peoples that make up each Latin American country. From Puerto Rico to Colombia, from Honduras to El Salvador, from Argentina to Mexico, you will find every kind of empanada, some are savory, some are sweet… they’re all delicious!
This simplified recipe for Puerto-Rican style empanadas is the perfect way to involve the whole family in the joy of preparing this dish, and, of course, in experiencing it!
•Cheese (of your choice)
•Empanada disc (sold in grocery store freezer section)
•Oil for frying
*for this recipe we are making cheese empanadas, but you can fill your empanadas with chicken, beef, cheese, or veggies!
1. Allow empanadas discs to thaw. Once soft, put a single disc on a cutting board.
2. Fold cheese in half and place in the middle of the disc.
3. Fold disc in half, into a semi-circle, so outer edges touch.
(Repeat steps 2-3 as many times to make as many empanadas as you’d like.)
4. Here’s the fun part, seal the empanada by using the back of a fork to crimp the edges. (Younger kids especially enjoy getting involved in this part)
5. Heat oil in a pan (enough to cover the the pan)
6. Place empanada in pan and cook one side for 4 minutes. Flip over to cook the other side. (Cooking times vary, watch your empanada dough, the cheese will melt quickly so you’re just watching for the dough to get golden and flaky)
7.Place fried empanadas on a napkin lined plate to cool.
8. Serve warm!
Now that you understand how to make an empanada, enjoy exploring all the different fillings you can try!