Officially Hispanic Heritage Month runs from September 15 – October 15th each year and if you’re wondering about the unusual dates, check out the post below from the official US government site. But any time of year is good for exploring the wide diversity of cultures that share a Hispanic heritage by starting with the instruments that create their signature sounds and popular music. From Afro-Cuban bongo drums to Andean panpipes, from guitars that trace their roots back to Spain to new world guiros, making musical crafts is a great, hands-on way of exploring these rich cultural heritages.
We’ve just released this new E-book what explores the background of 10 musical instruments, offers crafts projects and also 5 black and white coloring pages for kids. Check out the link below from TeachersPayTeachers or get a copy free – until October 31st on DARIA’s world music for kids website. Make sure you scroll down, as this E-book give-away is the last item on the page, here:
Few countries consider music so important that they actually designate a national instrument. Not so in Paraguay, where it’s beautiful and distinctive harp and harp music are considered national treasures and are loved throughout the region and the world.
Although there are many harps found in Europe, South America and across the globe, the Paraguayan harp is distinctively light, weighing only about 8 to 10 pounds. Tuned to a diatonic scale, the Paraguayan harp can have 32, 36, 38, 40, 42 or 46 strings and stands about 4 ½ to 5 feet tall.
But why talk about a Paraguayan harp, when you can listen to one? Here are four videos our favorite Paraguayan harp songs along with a bit of description and explanation.
400 Harps Play The Song “Pajaro Campana”
A classic of Paraguayan folk music, here you see 400 harps (yes, really 400 harps!) perform this beloved song. What is a pajaro campana? Literally a “bell bird”, most people agree that it’s the name for a bird heard around the capital city of Asunción whose call sounds like a bell.
This mega-concert for harps was held at the “Plaza Uruguaya” on July 15, 2012 to mark the 475th anniversary of the capital city of Asunción, Paraguay.
Pajaro Campana (The Bell Bird) Performed By Mariano y Ernesto
Here’s a second version of the same song. This time, you can hear two harps playing together in the form of a duet.
Harpist, Celso Duarte Plays The Song “Iguana “
Videotaped at a family concert in Carnegie Hall Dec 11, 2012, you can hear the distinctive voice of the Paraguayan harp as well as an ensemble of folk musicians playing shekere, quijada, upright bass and even dancing on a wooden box!
Moliendo Café Performed By Nicolas Carter on Paraguyan Harp
Moliendo Café means “grinding coffee” in English. The song was written by composer, Hugo Blanco and has a beautiful and haunting melody. Performed here as an instrumental by harpist, Nicolas Carter, lyrics to the song are below the video clip.
Although it isn’t exclusively about music, the blog hop listed by Multicultural Kid Blogs Hispanic Heritage Blog Hop has some incredible resources, great activities and fantastic prizes perfect for all ages and interests.
Discover new activities, songs, books, crafts and foods that educators and parents are sharing to celebrate this month marking the contributions of Hispanic cultures to the world.
National Hispanic Heritage Month was created in the USA under President Lyndon Johnson as a way to recognize contributions of Latin-American and Hispanic peoples to our country’s heritage. In Washington D.C., it is celebrated by a series of presentations, exhibits and activities but a variety of free resources are available at the government site that are used widely across the country and throughout the year.
The starting date for this month (September 15th) is a bit unusual and many people wonder why it begins in the middle of a month. The dates of September 15th to October 15th were chosen because they reflects a time period when eight Latin American countries declared their independence. Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Niceragua declared their independence on September 15th. September 16th, 18th and the 21st mark the dates when Mexico, Chile, and Belize did so as well.
Participating in this month of education and celebration are the Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
For a complete listing of resources, events and activities, including a section on teaching Hispanic heritage, visit the official website at the link below. For a series of musical crafts and activities that originate in Hispanic culture as well as two musical instrument give-aways, visit DARIA’s world music for children site below.