Saturday, November 2, 2019
Natalie Venedicto - St. Kevin School
MIAMI | St. Kevin School celebrated its annual Hispanic Festival with gusto Oct. 17 and 18, combining student learning projects with a colorful celebration featuring traditional Spanish and Latin American dances and foods.
Seventh grade students took the lead by preparing an interdisciplinary portfolio enumerating the wonders of the Hispanic world and its impact on American society. They began working on this comprehensive project at the beginning of the school year. Each student created a show board as a visual aid which they in turn used to teach each other and the other children in the school.
Although this was a specific seventh grade assignment, it also was a school-wide project-based learning unit. All classes from PreK2 on were assigned a “class country” to research and learn about during the month of October. Students completed work related to each country and each grade’s classroom doors were decorated to represent that country.
The festival, held Oct. 17, was a culmination of all the academic work as well as an evening for parents and guests to enjoy — with guests including visitors from the Hispanic consulates in Miami. The grand celebration took place in the beautifully decorated school patio, with representative folkloric dances and a grand finale with children dancing their version of Latin rhythms. The students’ countries’ exhibits were displayed as everyone enjoyed an exquisite taste of delicious typical dishes from Spain and Latin America.
The next morning, the students celebrated a Hispanic Heritage Mass in the church. They walked in with a parade of flags and dressed in typical costumes. Students were reminded that we inherited our Catholic faith from Spain and the readings and songs were bilingual. An assembly for the school children followed the Mass.
This multidisciplinary event at St. Kevin School created closer bonds among peers, parents, grandparents and members of the community. The students learned and developed a deeper appreciation of diverse cultures.