Español 2 Plans, Prepares and Celebrates This Latin American Celebration
Last week, señora Johnson’s Spanish 2, period 6 students celebrated a traditional Quinceañera. A Quinceañera is a celebration of a young woman’s 15 birthday. This fiesta is believed to have come from Aztec and Hispanic traditions and is celebrated in Mexico, Central and South American countries. The students studied and researched information about the fiesta traditions and then planned the celebration. Our quinceañera (the young lady celebrating her 15th birthday) was Taryn Arnold. Taryn is the student closest in age to 15 so she agreed to be the honored guest. The students share the following information about the planning of the Quinceañera and our celebration.
La Música y Baile (The Music and Dance)
For the Quinceñera we choreographed and taught the Surprise Court Dance which is one of the tres bailes (three dances) that take place at a Quinceñera along with el vals (waltz) and Father-Daughter Dance. Traditionally, las chicas (girls) are called damas and los chichos (boys) chambelanes. We used traditional dance moves and music for both the Surprise and Father-Daughter Dance. Usually the Surprise Dance choreography takes up to tres meses (three months) to learn, however, we only had one week but we still managed to pull it off well. We also made a fiesta playlist using up-beat, modern Spanish music. The Surprise Dance was the main event of the Quinceñera y nos divertimos (we had fun)! -Erica, Ellie y Josi
La Comida (Food)
For the Quinceañera the food committee brought papas bravas, picadillo, arroz con leche (rice pudding), and el pastel (cake). We chose to bring papas bravas because it is normally an appetizer used at Quinceañeras. It is made with fried papas (potatoes) that are usually diced and fried in olive oil with some garlic cloves then topped with salsa brava. We made picadillo because its a traditional meal they have at Quinceañeras. It is also a meal that families have for dinner. Picadillo is made of ground beef with a variety of verduras (vegetables) including peppers, cebollas (onions), olives, and raisins. We also made arroz con leche as a second desert for the Quinceañera. Arroz con leche is made up of white rice (arroz), condensed milk, evaporated milk, and cinnamon. This dish can be made for all kinds of different events that is why we decided to make this as a second desert for the Quinceñera. We decided to make a two tier cake because Mexican customs dictate that the cake should be colorful and large with multiple tiers. We decorated the cake with blue frosting to create a wave effect for our “Under the Sea” theme. For bebidas (drinks) we brought Sparkling grape juice to represent el champán (champagne) used for giving toasts. We also bought la limonada (lemonade) because typically there are fruity drinks brought to a Quinceañera for younger attendees. -Taryn, Mikwena, Taylor, and Brittyn
Las tradiciones (Traditions)
Some of the traditions we demonstrated was la coronacion or the crowing of la quinceanera which represents that she is always a princess in God’s eyes. The gifting of the la ultima muñeca or the last doll which represents the changing of priorities from a child to a young women. The changing of los zapatos or the shoes is a tradition when la Quinceañera changes from flats into heels to represent her transitioning into a woman. The giving of la joyería or jewelry in which the aretes or earrings symbolize that God is always listening and the anillio or ring represents all the passages of life she will go through. Over our project we learned a lot about how much the Quinceñera means to the young women and her family. It takes many different people make a Quinceñera happen. The tradiciones (traditions) committee planned the events above throughout the Quinceñera. – Dalton, Carson, and Hailie.
Las decoraciones y invitados (Decorations and invited guests)
For La Quinceñera we decided to use los colores royal blue and gold, we used royal blue because it is a traditional color and we used gold to accent it. We decided on the theme “Under the Sea” because it allowed us to have fun making our own decoraciones (decorations).
We set up a row of table which were decorated with gold tablecloths and flores azules (blue flowers). For la quinceañera we specialized her chair with blue streamers and balloons. For our centerpieces we created miniature aquariums out of mason jars; which included blue gravel and multicolored decorative plants. On la mesa de comida (food table), we used the same tablecloths, however instead of the blue carnations, we incorporated sunflowers and white fox tails. We chose to use the tradicional (traditional) manner of inviting los invitados (the invited guests) to la Quinceñera with hand delivered invitations. We chose to do las invitaciones (invitations) in the shape of a seashell and the colors royal azul (blue), amarillo (yellow), and blanco (white) to match the theme of “Under the Sea”. ~Lauren P, Lindsey K, Briaunna K, Marissa R, Rileagh M