The Essential Question that guided our projects’ focus was:
Is it possible to persuade young Latinos to learn about their heritage and history through word, song, and dance?
After successfully completing the Corrido Music Project (2010-2014) and with the publication of the book, “Nuestros Corridos: Latinos in Idaho, Idaho Latino History through Song & Word – 1863 to 2013” the committee began looking for funding to take this historical presentation throughout the state.
Touring has created historical awareness and has called attention to what Dr. Gamboa calls “the one-sidedness of Pacific Northwest history.” The audiences enjoy the stories being told through film, music and word and become aware of the history of the Latinos in Idaho and their contributions to the economic and cultural development of our state.
This year, workshops were conducted through ZOOM connecting musicians who were working on new corridos/songs. Several students and members of the youth mariachi Cantares de Mexico from Nampa, participated in the workshops and learned the corrido to Mr. Abel Garcia, composed by Lalo Barca formerly of Caldwell. Mr. Garcia is the group guitar teacher and a Latino leader in Idaho. In-person dance workshops took place at the Hispanic Cultural Center in Nampa and were conducted by Monique Duarte.
The group learned new choreography for lively ballads that are included in the book.
At the conclusion of the project, students responded to questions related to the identified Standards:
Several Anchor Standards were met:
#5 Develop and refine artistic techniques and work presentation. The group of students worked with the instructors focusing on rhythm, technique, steps and choreography and they were able to present a performance.
#6 – Convey meaning through the presentation of artistic work. The students learned the history and content of the songs.
#8 – Interpret intent and meaning in artistic work. The students share with their peers at school about the artistic processes and the final product.
1) At the conclusion of the project, students responded to questions related to the identified standards
Culture – We memorized a corrido/song about Mr. Abel Garcia, a Latino leader that has given a lot to our Latino community and society in general.
“I enjoyed the presentations by the musicians and their songs about our history. I did not know that history could be so much fun.”
Leadership – “I learned the choreography of the dance and how we need to depend on each other for the presentation.”
Personal Development – “I feel I accomplished a lot today, I leaned about corridos/ballads, about dancing, and about our history.”
Having a presentation celebrating the history of the Latinos in Idaho is relevant to the whole community, especially to the Latino youth. We all know how important it is for people, especially the young, to see faces like themselves in the annals of history. This is related to pride and positive feelings that spill over other areas of their lives.
At the end of the evening, we noticed that the students were very happy, and complementary to the musicians and to the choreographer. They made positive comments that showed appreciation for all those involved.