We are so bummed this year—besides everything else going on in the world— that we were not be able to host our annual Día de los Muertos Festival. It’s such a special event that we look forward to creating for our community. For now, we can celebrate the life of our dearly departed at home and with our loved ones!
Last year we created the Día de los Muertos Traditions & Customs Coloring Book because I could not find a book or product that explained Día de Muertos in a simple, beautiful and straight-forward manner to kids. I also wanted a book that would tell you about the customary elements one should place on an altar.
So I, along with artist Kristen Mishay, created that book. It is narrated by Paloma and Luz, two lovely calaveras who are your guides to the traditions of Día de Muertos. In the book, you’ll also find a crossword puzzle, word search and more. With so many families homeschooling and scrambling to find activities to keep kids busy, this is a great way to entertain and introduce them to Mexico’s most beautiful celebration. I hope you love this coloring book as much as I do. You can purchase it now online at www.artelexia.com and at our shop, Artelexia in North Park.
In addition to our coloring book, we also carry a few picture books about Día de Muertos you’ll love!
1) Mi Familia Calaca by Cynthia Weill. In this book we meet a family of paper maché skeletons which can help kids see the humor in calaveras—a tradition in Mexico that goes back to pre-Columbian times.
2) Day of the Dead: A Count and Find Primer by Greg Paprocki. This board book is perfect for little hands. Here, readers are encouraged to find traditional Día de Muertos items in each one of its beautiful illustrations.
3) Just A Minute: A Trickster Tale and Counting Book by Yuyi Morales. This Pura Belpré Award Winner is a dynamic must-read-aloud picture book that always gets great reactions from a crowd. The story follows Señor Calavera as he arrives unexpectedly at Grandma Beetle’s home when she’s trying to celebrate her birthday with her grandkids. It is a perfect introduction to counting and has Spanish and English words in the text.
4) Funny Bones: Posada and His Day of the Dead Calaveras by Duncan Tonatiuh. This is also a Pura Belpré Award winning book, a Robert F. Sibert Medal winner and a New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Book Award winner. Funny Bones tells the story of Mexican artists José Guadalupe Posada and how he created calaveras, the amusing figures that started as political cartoons and eventually became synonymous with Día de Muertos. As a bonus, Duncan’s art-stye is reminiscent of the illustrations found in the pre-Colombian Mixtec codex.
5) La Catrina: A Bilingual Book of Emotions by Patty Rodriguez and Ariana Stein of Lil Libros. This adorable board book introduces little ones to emotional expressions and their first English and Spanish words--and teaches them to recognize feelings like emocionado (excited), triste (sad), and confiado (confident).