Suffield High School Students Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

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This is student Dave Danek’s imaginative response to the request for an expressive self-portrait.

Photo provided by Carl Casinghino and Magdalena Kruk

This is student Dave Danek’s imaginative response to the request for an expressive self-portrait.

It has become a fall tradition at Suffield High School to celebrate the heritage of Spanish speakers in the United States and throughout the world. This year, our World Languages department kicked off our activities to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with guests on our Morning Update show and projects in Spanish classes through which students investigated cultural identity and produced their own work to express important aspects of their personal identities.

The Morning Update team featured exchange student Monica Van Ginkel to open our week with an extended address in Spanish to our school – after which, of course, she discussed with her co-anchor what she had said. Monica, who is from the region of Catalonia in Spain, has also become part of our Morning Update production team and has even directed an opening segment for the show and a commercial for our fall play. She also recently visited an Advanced Placement Spanish class and delivered a presentation on her life in Spain and engaged in a discussion with students about comparisons with our community in America.

Each day on the Morning Update show, students were asked a question of the day and they were also treated to some conversation in Spanish by our anchors, including John Nadeau, Grace Domashinski, and Ben and Michael Grigoriou. According to the Library of Congress and data from the U.S. Census Bureau, Hispanics constitute almost 20 percent of the nation’s total population today. At the current rate, Hispanics will constitute 31 percent of the population, or 128.8 million people, by 2060. Students at the high school had an opportunity to discover these and other facts during the week-long celebration of Hispanic cultures.

Additionally, students in some of our Spanish classes explored issues of identity, which included investigations of the artwork of Frida Kahlo. They also created projects in various media to express their own portrait and conducted presentations in Spanish to share this work with classmates. We are featuring an example with this article.

Thanks to the members of the World Language Honor Society, the Morning Update team, and all students and teachers of Spanish who made this celebration such a successful one.

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