Today is officially El día de los niños/El día de los libros, celebrated every April 30. And today is particularly special, since it’s the 20th anniversary of Día. This special celebration was conceived by and established by founder Pat Mora, author, poet, and literacy advocate. In March 1996, while being interviewed in Tucson, Arizona, she learned about the holiday El día de los niños celebrated in Mexico. Realizing that the United States had nothing similar, Pat proposed linking Children's Day, the celebration of childhood and children, with literacy and bilingualism, creating a new holiday: El día de los niños/El día de los libros.
Earlier this month, Pat also delivered the prestigious May Hill Arbuthnot Lecture in Santa Barbara, CA, “Bookjoy! Alegria en los Libros!” the Garvin Theatre at Santa Barbara City College. Fortunately, they recorded her talk and you can watch it in its entirety here:
Meanwhile, here’s the official description of Día from the ALSC sponsor website: “El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children's Day/Book Day), commonly known as Día, is a celebration every day of children, families, and reading that culminates yearly on April 30. The celebration emphasizes the importance of literacy for children of all linguistic and cultural backgrounds.”
Check out the ALA/ALSC website for free downloadable materials, tips for starting a book club, booklists, toolkits, and more. You can find even more info, help, and celebration videos at Pat’s website. Plus lesson plans here and even more resources here.
Share Pat’s celebratory picture book all about Día, Book Fiesta! and her poem about Día in The Poetry Friday Anthology for Celebrations (below) to celebrate this special anniversary of this special day.