Día De Los Muertos Visits El Mo

The Foreign Language and Art Department celebrated the Mexican heritage of Día De Los Muertos

Papel+Picado+flows+in+the+wind+through+the+hallways+of+El+Modena.
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Día De Los Muertos Visits El Mo

Papel Picado flows in the wind through the hallways of El Modena.

Papel Picado flows in the wind through the hallways of El Modena.

Miranda Roman

Papel Picado flows in the wind through the hallways of El Modena.

Miranda Roman

Miranda Roman

Papel Picado flows in the wind through the hallways of El Modena.

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Señorita Valdiviezo recreated the festivities of a traditional Día De Los Muertos celebration at El Modena during the week of October 31st through November 4th by utilizing the Foreign Language and Art Departments’ knowledge of Mexican culture and artistic abilities. The campus was lively with a plethora of sugar skulls, altars, and mariachi music.

As a first-year teacher at El Modena, Valdiviezo noted the cultural similarities of El Modena to her former school, Roosevelt High School in Boyle Heights, California. At Valdiviezo’s former school, the 1st and 2nd of November were dedicated to showcasing students’ Día De Los Muertos artwork and traditional Mexican music performed by a live mariachi band during lunch. Valdiviezo’s original celebration at Roosevelt High School was her model for El Modena’s celebration.

Leading up to the celebration, the Spanish Department reached out to teachers from other departments to recruit their students to decorate stairways and hallways with their own unique twist on traditional aspects of Día De Los Muertos, such as tombstones with French stories and altars for significant American history figures.

The Spanish students were the major force behind the festival, as they teamed together to create crafts, artistic displays around campus, transform individual students and staff into sugar skulls, and perform in the mariachi band. Valdiviezo gushed about the students’ involvement by stating, “The students are the stars of this entire festival. Every work of art on this campus is made and dedicated to them. They have all gone above and beyond to ensure that this festival is successful and that everyone enjoys themselves. Students are getting together and volunteering to decorate and organize the festival on campus. This festival happened because they wanted to make it happen.” This festival strengthened the El Mo community by commemorating the Mexican culture.

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