Spanish Culture Activities- A Trip to Mexico City

May 21, 2010 · Posted in spanish speaking activities · Comment 

Mexican cultural activities and materials are at your finger tips in Passport to Spanish Fun: Mexico City Marvels! Pick, choose, or use all of the activities and ready-made materials and printables to give learners of all ages a life-like travel experience to the wonders of Mexico City.

Several hot-links to sites ready for you to view and use.  Here are some of the printables:

  • American Passport
  • session schedules
  • boarding passes
  • post card

Taco Bar Treats

May 17, 2010 · Posted in spanish speaking activities · Comment 

Nothing beats a taco bar. Since it requires customization, it meeds everybody needs. You only put the ingredient in  a taco that you want. Serve one up anytime.

Mexican Tacos

Authentic Mexican tacos don’t resemble their bloated Amercian counterparts. The meat is lean and freshly cooked and the vegetables and salsas are just-chopped fresh. A mexican taco is a small, streamlined  affair.  The idea in Mexico is to order a few to several tacos with only one item in them. Then, the tacos can be dressed up with different salsa and fresh hot sauces.  The fresh corn tortillas are warm, chewy, and they taste like corn.

Check out this video: preparando tacos.

Basic Taco Bar Set Up

Setting up a taco bar is all about preparing the meat and chopping  up garnishes way before-hand.  Rounding up salsas is also vital.

  • Warm the meat or meats- shredded chicken, shredded flank steak, or pulled pork, carnitas.
  • Warm the corn tortillas in the oven.  They must be stacked and wrapped in foil to prevent dryness.
  • Set up everything in a buffet: tortillas, warmed meat, grated cheese, salsas, and shredded lettuce and tomatoe are optional.
  • Diners move down the buffet filling their plates.

Mexican beans or frijoles and a Mexican cole slaw round out the meal with some flan for dessert.

Free Spanish 5 de Mayo Activities

El Cinco de Mayo is almost here!  ¡Viva México!  ¡Viva Juárez!  Who was Juárez?  Benito Juárez was the Zapotec Indian general who lead the Mexican troops to victory.   Celebrate the vital Mexican victory of the Battle of Puebla with Spanish speakers and learners.

Click Cinco de Mayo Activities for a free set of Cinco de Mayo handouts.

Click Cinco de Mayo Vocabulary for a free podcast for Cinco de Mayo.

Spanish Speaking Culture: the History of Chocolate

Haciendo Chocolate Caliente en México.

See the Spanish video above from Mexican chocolate manufacturer Mayordomo of Oaxaca, Mexico.

Divine is my synonym for chocolate! Most of the world loves chocolate in its now myriad of forms, and most of us don’t think about where chocolate came from.  It’s just one of the wonderful, ubiquitous things that IS.

Chocolate, or cho-coh-lah-teh as we say, comes from Mexico! Learning Spanish is also learning about Spanish speaking culture, and here are the basics about some ancient Mexican culture.  An excellent way to learn about Spanish speaking culture is to learn about it in Spanish, or en espaol.

THE HISTORY OF CHOCOLATE FOR SPANISH LEARNERS.  CLICK HERE.

DATOS INTERESTANTES/INTERESTING FACTS

  • El tribu de los Olmecas llevaron el cacao a México antes de Cristo. The tribe of the Olmecas brought cocoa to Mexico before Christ, or Before the Common Era.
  • Los Aztecas bebieron el cacao como una bebida muy amarga.  The Aztecs drank cocoa as a bitter beverage.
  • El explorador Hernán Cortés llevó el cacao a España. The explorer Hernan Cortez brought cocoa to Spain.
  • Los españoles añadieron aúzcar y canela al chocolate. The Spaniards added sugar and cinammon to chocolate.

Free Spanish Worksheet: Los Tres Reyes Magos

Los Tres Reyes Magos by Heartlandgraphics.org

Los Tres Reyes Magos by Heartlandgraphics.org

January Sixth, or Epiphany, or in the Spanish speaking world el Día de los Tres Reyes Magos is almost here!  Los Tres Reyes Magos, or the three Wisemen, bring children presents and treats.  Sometimes they are put into a child’s shoe, and sometimes they are placed under the Christmas tree.

Download our free Tres Reyes gift to you, a Spanish coloring sheet.  Click here.

For more information on el Día de los Tres Reyes Magos, search this site for the article from a couple of days ago.  Qué tenga un feliz día de los Tres Reyes Magos!

Free Mexican Holiday Recipes- La Nochebuena

December 24, 2008 · Posted in Mexican Culture, Spanish Vocabulary · Comment 
Fresh Mexican Spices for Christmas Dinner

Fresh Mexican Spices for Christmas Dinner

One of the most exciting of Hispanic holidays is La Nochebuena, or Christmas Eve.  All of the anticipation and preparation of the Christmas season or Las Navidades culminates in La Nochebuena. This is the time for your favorite dress and a new hairstyle, and when the best eavesdropping occurs as your aunts and cousins critique everyone’s outfits as they come through the door, steamy dishes in hand.

Parties of exteneded, multi-generational families gather with their own delecacies, and dressed and ready to go to church . . at midnight!  Or, often at 11 pm, the misa del gallo, lasts a full hour at least.  Families then return to the hosts’ and eat a rich meal full of the favorites of varying Hispanic cuisines.  I remember  a couple of baked turkeys accompanied by green chile and cheese tamales, a steamy pot of pozole stew, calabacitas casserole, and lots of chile con queso.

Buñuelos were also served, and sparingly.  They were perfect, cinammon dusted deep-fried cookies my mother got from nuns or elderly ladies who drove them to our house in the trunks of their cars.

In most Spanish speaking countries children open all of their presents on Christmas Eve, or La Nochebuena, and they get to look forward to a few more on Epiphany (Jan 6) when the three Wisemen, or los Tres Reyes, come into to their rooms to leave goodies in their shoes.

There isn’t a more wonderful night all year so full of family, food, faith, and fun!

Vocabulary

  • La Nochebuena= Christmas Eve
  • La Misa del Gallo= Midnight Mass, or church service around that time
  • La Comida= the meal
  • Tamales de Chile, Queso, y Pollo= Chile, Cheese, and Chicken tamales
  • Pozole= hearty soup or stew of white hominy, green chile, and chicken or pork
  • Buñuelos- deep-fried, lacy cookies in a butterfly shape dusted by cinammon.  Often made by nuns.

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