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5 Ways to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month With Kids

Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated nationwide from Sept. 15 through Oct. 15, 2014. Sept. 15 is the anniversary of independence for five Latin American countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. Mexico achieved independence on Sept. 16 and Chile on Sept. 18. Hispanic Heritage Month has been celebrated in the United States since 1974, when President Gerald Ford issued a Presidential Proclamation extending Hispanic Heritage Week into a month-long observation. We’ve rounded up some easy ways to celebrate the culture of merengue, mangos and amigos with your kids. 

1. Make a Recipe: Kiddie Coquito

This Hispanic version of non-alcoholic Eggnog is an easy-to-make treat that everyone will love. 

Ingredients:
2 15-ounce cans cream of coconut
2 14-ounce cans condensed milk
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl.
2. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
3. Serve (makes 36 ounces). 

2. Read Together

The Florida Department of Education has created a Hispanic Heritage Month Recommended Reading List. The books are divided into grade level categories.

3. Go Bilingual: Plaza Sesamo

Tune in to PBS Kids Sprout on Demand and watch an episode of Elmo's amigos on Plaza Sesamo. Your kids will be reciting their ABCs in Spanish in no time. 

4. Play a Game: Dominoes 

Pull out the Dominoes for family game night. Have the kids connect the Domino tiles to work on their math and matching, Hispanic style. 

5. Have a Dance-off: Flamenco

Gather around the computer and watch a few flamenco dance videos on YouTube. Then battle it out on the living room dance floor. The winner gets an extra serving of coquito. 

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