National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated from September 15th to October 15th and recognizes the achievements and contributions of Hispanic Americans. This is a great time to introduce your preschooler to books to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month.
It is critical for children to hear and be exposed to a diversity of stories and books. Books help children learn about themselves as well as experiences and people that are different from their own backgrounds. Oftentimes, however, collections of the most well-known children’s books and stories tend to be culturally limited.
This month, finding books to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month offers a great opportunity to engage your children with stories that introduce and honor authentic Hispanic culture. Use the list below, curated specifically for preschoolers, as you visit the library or shop for books to build your own home collection. By including multiple Hispanic authors from the diversity of nationalities and cultural traditions included in what children read, children of all cultures come to understand and respect the important contributions of today’s Hispanic Americans.
Books to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month:
|Mango, Abuela, and Me by Meg Medina (Author), Angela Dominguez (Illustrator)|
This poignant story about a little girl, who only speaks English, and her Abuela, who only speaks Spanish, conveys the deep connection that comes from sharing one another’s language and culture and the transcendent power of love.
|Ten Little Birds /Diez Pajaritos by Andrés Salguero (Author), Sara Palacios (Illustrator) |
This fun and silly story book weaves learning the numbers 1-10 in Spanish with a whimsical tale about birds flying away from a mischievous kitty.
|Round Is a Tortilla: A Book of Shapes by Roseanne Thong (Author), John Parra (Illustrator) |
In Round Is a Tortilla, readers learn about all different types of shapes while also being exposed to different Spanish words and illustrations in the style of Mexican folk art.
|Why Are You Doing That? by Elisa Amado (Author), Manuel Monroy (Illustrator) |
By asking questions of those around him, a young boy named Chepito learns about different types of food (including frijoles, tortillas, and avocados) and how they are grown and made.
|Alma and How She Got Her Name by Juana Martinez-Neal (Author and Illustrator) Alma Sofia Esperanza José Pura Candela does not like her name because it is so long. In this story, Alma learns about the history of her name and begins to understand the incredible contributions of those she is named after, making her feel proud of her name and who she is.|
|I Love Saturdays y Domingos by Alma Flor Ada (Author), Elvia Savidier (Illustrator) |
On weekends, a young girl visits two sets of grandparents–on Saturdays, she sees her Grandma and Grandpa and speaks English with them and on Sundays she sees her Abuelito and Abuelita and speaks Spanish with them. This book celebrates both the similarities and differences between different cultures and languages and highlights the universal language of love.
|The Bossy Gallito by Lucía González (Author), Lulu Delacre (Illustrator) |
In this humorous story, based on a Cuban folktale, a bossy rooster has a bumpy journey on the way to his uncle’s wedding. Using both Spanish and English words and set in Miami’s Little Havana, readers experience the excitement and joy that can come from learning about different cultures and languages.
|Arroz con Leche by Lulu Delacre (Author and Illustrator) |
This collection of traditional Latin American rhymes, songs, and games–written in both English and Spanish–is accompanied by beautiful illustrations that children will want to read and view over and over again.
|Just Ask! by Sonia Sotomayor (Author), Rafael López (Illustrator) |
This picture book written by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor celebrates the different qualities that make each of us unique and shows the power of collaboration and teamwork.
|La Princesa and the Pea by Susan Middleton Elya (Author), Juana Martinez-Neal (Illustrator)|
This story from Peru offers a twist on the classic fairy tale, The Princess and the Pea. The familiar components of the story combined with the multilingual rhyming text will delight readers of all ages.