Teaching and Tasties

Delicious eats and daring, death-defying teaching feats

Día de los Muertos November 3, 2008

Filed under: School — tlsussman @ 5:31 pm

As a Spanish teacher, it is very difficult to pass this time of year without talking about Día de los Muertos, Day of the Dead.  Of course, many of my students have no clue what this is, but they do know it has something to do with candy and sugar.  Usually at this time of year, the extra credit assignment, after discussing the holiday, is to bake pan de muertos, dead bread, which is usually dry and basically horrendous – mostly due to the fact that it is made by 12 year olds!  This year, in my quest to stray away from foods (less worries of allergies and less wasted resources), I found this really cute idea of a skull pillow (which of course I cannot find again to save my life!!)  Skeletons, calaveras, are dressed up in a variety of costumes and offer resemble people who have died.  Perfect!

My students were instructed to create a small felt pillow in the shape of a skull.  Th

e directions were simple and this was not too costly.  I reminded them that they could use old t-shirts or pillowcases that were going to be donated or thrown out, or any inexpensive fabrics.  This also didn’t involve a sewing machine, as thick thread is used for effect.  The only other requirement was that the skull MUST include something that helped me identify it – a sport the student enjoys, his/her favorite colors, etc.

Out of 45 kids, I received about 15 projects.  This was actually a total shocker…way more than I expected.  Not only were they totally cute, but I could tell that some of the kids really took the time to figure out how to make the calavera look like them.  I even had one student put her dog’s name, as he died this past year.  How thoughtful!

They turned out totally cute and the kids were so excited, they even wanted to share and talk about why they chose to do what they did.  I swear, it was pretty much as close to teac

her heaven as I could get 🙂

Here are a few examples:


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