Hispanic Heritage Month and everything worth knowing


Avery Rosas

The language portables are decorated for Hispanic Heritage Month as this festivity brings awareness to the students at Ayala

Avery Rosas

From September 15 to October 15,  an opportunity presents itself to expand the reach of the Hispanic heritage. Starting from the language to the culture, much is left to be discovered by the majority of the American population. 

For a Spanish teacher, Hispanic culture isn’t something you need to learn about through the exposure of a mid-September celebration. “Through my studies, through my education, my major focus was on learning about the different authors of different literature,” said Spanish teacher Sra. Alves. “We had to read books in Spanish about different important writers and contributors to Hispanic heritage in general.”

 Throughout the illustrious history of the people of Hispanic culture, there are few unrecognized patrons whom the Spanish teachers feel deserve to be known. “There’s Dolores Huerta, who was Cesar Chavez’s right hand helper,” said Spanish teacher Sra. Harmon. “And people always gave the term ‘Si, se puede’ to Chavez. But, it was actually Dolores Huerta who coined that phrase.” 

Many misconceptions have been fabricated throughout the years about Hispanic culture, and there are things that people ought to know. “I think that it’s important to realize that there are a lot of different cultures, there are 22 different countries where Spanish is spoken,” said Sra Harmon. “And so it gives an opportunity to, to kind of, like focus on those cultures that may have been forgotten.”

The school has always tried to highlight the culture and heritage, but hasn’t always had the opportunity to. When the school year started in September, it would tend to gain less interest as other events began to happen. The World Language Department has always strived to teach about Hispanic Heritage Month in their classrooms, but they believe it is starting to become more recognized school-wide as the academic year begins to start earlier and earlier.

 “All of us in our department have really been just pushing towards it, because we do want to share with the whole school what we’re doing,” said Sra. Alves. “And I think that’s important in the society that we live in today’s is sharing culture, and helping everybody understand each other.”

Despite the lack of awareness at the school, Hispanic culture has a deep history of artists and musicians, few of which have been some of the most iconic to people all around the world. In addition to this, their history is also filled with inventive artists and musicians.

“I am a huge fan of Frida Kahlo,” said Alves. “One of the reasons I wanted to study Spanish was because I read a book on Frida Kahlo and when I read the book, I was just amazed at her life story.”

“Any Hispanic person who makes a positive impact on society or the country in general, on the environment or helping children should be recognized.” said Sra. Florence Erturk. 

As a culminated culture, Hispanics have, by many, been generalized to a singular country. What could be called a mixture of obliviousness or ignorance is frustrating to many including Hispanics. “ I always tell them, it’s not because he speaks Spanish from Mexico. He can be from El Salvador or from Nicaragua.” said Sra Erturk. “I try to, you know, plant that little seed in their head. But if they don’t take Spanish, they’re going to be ignorant.”