The north end of Cecil Park was dedicated to the children of Delano Union School District’s Princeton Preschool during the preschool center’s celebration of Día del Niño April 26.
Site supervisor and teacher Wendy Hernandez Salcido stated that the two classrooms at the center have celebrated the Day of the Child on the last Friday of April for the past six years.
Día del Niño was first celebrated in Mexico in 1925 and continues to grow in popularity around the world. In Mexico, the day allows students to take a break from studying and to enjoy a variety of special activities. Parents are invited to attend and the day is filled with treats, decorations and traditional Mexican games that children love to play.
The celebration by Princeton Preschool, according to Salcido, included about 60 of their children (ages 4 and 5) and about 30 parents and grandparents. The children enjoyed activities such as walking courses, hitting balls off of cones to practice gross motor skills, a prize walk (similar to a cake walk), a bounce house and water tables to create all sizes of bubbles.
“This year, we incorporated multicultural activities such as the Lotería game,” she said, “and children made dream catchers.”
The parents and grandparents brought food to share among themselves from different cultures, including lumpia, pan dulce, pupusas (a food from El Salvador) and fresh horchata and Jamaica waters.
All activities were coordinated by Salcido, child care teacher Veronica Reyes and child care aides Araceli Renteria, Almeda Ballesteros, Mary Carmen Peña and Maria Gastelum.
“The parents and grandparents were very happy with the day,” Salcido said, “and they said it gets better every year.”
Mike Bledsoe is the director of child development services at the Delano Union School District.