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  1. #1
    Member
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    May 2004
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    46

    Dia de Los Muertos for the Young'uns

    Hello!

    I teach Pre-School (4 years old) and we will soon be teaching the kids about Dia De Los Muertos. I know very little about it (you want to know about Irish Halloween traditions? Im your girl). My co-teacher usually plans for this lesson but asked me if I had any ideas. I said I didnt but I knew some people who would!

    Help!

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  3. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
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    Biggest Little City in the World
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    I'm sure Crafty Chica will have plenty to say on the topic, though being October this is her busy season! However if you simply Google the term Muertos, the site with her husband's artwork comes up at #1.

    Muertos is a syncratic ( think that's the term) custom that's equal part Halloween, All Saint's Day, and indigenious custom. It sounds like with Halloween, it was originally an attempt by the Catholic Church to get people to celebrate a pagan holiday as All Saint's Day, except that the two customs become something else instead. People use it as a time to remember their departed loved ones by paying homage to them through building alters (which have flowers, their photos, favorite types of food & cigarettes, et cetera). Some of the things you always see are calaveras (skulls) made out of sugar, pan de muertos (bread in the shape of a skull), brilliant cockscomb flowers (intense orange & magenta color), and candles.

    The first night is for the spirits of deceased children (angelitos) to return and the second night is for adults.
    It's become a huge tourist attraction in recent years - like there are tours for tourists (toting huge amounts of camera equipment) was want to be part of it, or "best decorated tombstone" contests (kind of like Snoopy's doghouse in A Charlie Brown Christmas) . However it's primarily a big holiday for family and friends to get together, kind of like how Thanksgiving is here in the US.

    I actually went to the city of Oaxaca in Mexico last year for the event and have some photos of the alters, types of flowers used, family observations at graveside etc if you're interested.[/url]

  4. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    phx, az
    Posts
    686
    hi!!
    i'm no expert but i have researched it for my books so i know bits and pieces:

    it actually it goes back even further! 3,000 years, and it took place in august, the beginning of what they (aztecs) considered their harvest season. the aztecas had this ritual to honor their ancesotrs and they used to build altars of the bones and skulls of the those who died. it was actually very brutal.

    when the spaniards came, they freaked at this custom. they wanted to do away with it altogether but the aztecs wouldn't hear of it so there was a compromise of moving to coincide with all souls day and all saints day. it really has absolutely nothing to do with halloween at all....

    i LOVE your photos!!! thank you for sharing the insight and the photos!!!


 

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