EL DÍA DE LOS MUERTOS
Seven Arrows is committed to deeply, meaningfully, and authentically exposing our entire community to the cultures and traditions of other countries through our global festivals. The first staple of the year brings to life the rigor of our Spanish program integrated with language, literature, and poetry; fine art; music; dance; dramatic performance; and much more. El Diá de los Muertos is a colorful and happy holiday that celebrates and honors the dead and our ancestors. Though people in other countries may remember their dead with grief and solemnity, those who celebrate the Day of the Dead commemorate the legacy of family members who have passed and view death as a natural phenomenon, an expected part of the wondrous cycle of life.
Students make meaningful connections with the richness of the world around them through full immersion in the arts and discussions that generate critical thinking. Integration and joyful hands-on learning let them delve into the significance of this important holiday, celebrated in Mexico and other Spanish-speaking countries.
They also deeply explore the critical questions at the source of cultural histories: What is the essence of these cultural practices? What is the history of the people and places where these practices originated? How do cultures and customs influence and relate to one another in the past and today (i.e. globalization, colonization)? For instance, why is El Diá de los Muertos celebrated in the Philippines but not in Colombia? What are the common threads and what are the differences among Spanish-speaking countries such as Mexico, Colombia, Guatemala, El Salvador, Chile, and Argentina? What common denominators might we find in dance, food, festivities, family dynamics, traditions, and language?
With the help of our specialty departments, students manifest the ethos of cultures through their performances. You may wonder why dance is such a significant part of what we do at Seven Arrows. Aside from the obvious benefits of physical and mental creativity and self-expression, dance, regardless of the genre or form, is a universal language that breaks down barriers between cultures. It is also an incredibly powerful communicator of cultural roots and expressions of what communities live for.
Staying true to how cultural practices unfold in their places of origin is key. For this reason, our street fiesta mirrors the festivities in Latin American neighborhoods: We bring food, music, and dance to the streets and invite the community. The actual day of the festival is an authentic Mexican/Latin celebration in which children and attending family members are treated to traditional music and Mexican “Pan de Muertos.”
Every Seven Arrows student has been working hard on various visual and performing art pieces that will be shown throughout the day. Please join us for this beautiful global cultural celebration!