El Día de los Niños/El Día de los Libros
a Celebration of Childhood and Bilingual Literacy
In 1997, teachers and librarians in numerous cities began to celebrate April 30th as El Día de los niños / El Día de los libros. How fortunate we are to be rich in children, rich in books, and rich in languages.
Schools, libraries, museums, and book stores are again planning activities for April 30th to celebrate the work they do throughout the year: opening the world of books to ALL children. Join us!
In your own community, propose this observance for the last day of National Poetry Month and help spread the word that books change lives. Encourage creative co-sponsorships between schools and universities or libraries and community groups, museums and the media. As was done in New Mexico, and in cities such as Santa Fe, Tucson, and San Antonio, ask your governor and mayor to issue proclamations. Writing prizes, if given, would be books (of course!) fostering their value. On the border, the day could include binational activities.
We hope other language groups will translate the words El Día de los niños / El Día de los libros into their languages and join us in annually working with schools and libraries to plan appropriate events.
April 30th can become a day for remembering the power of words and books in the lives of our young people and for honoring all the languages spoken in the homes of this country. One in five of our school children comes fom a home in which a language other than English is spoken. By honoring these languages, we celebrate our linguistic and cultural wealth.
Best wishes in your work for children,
Quien habla dos lenguas, vale por dos.