By Efrain Nieves & Victoria Cepeda
One parent’s crusade to fight ignorance and instill in her young son a sense of pride of his origins led to the first Story Hour reading series in Spanish held at the Secaucus Public Library in New Jersey. It all started when Paula Tropeano’s son was hesitant to speak Spanish for fear of being mocked by his English speaking friends. It has since transcended into an educational program for parents who want to encourage their U.S. born children to also speak Spanish.
Story time is hosted at the Secaucus Public Library “the second and fourth Tuesday of each month throughout the summer” according to the article titled “A Growing Population First Spanish Story Time Held in Secaucus” in the hudsonreporter.com.
The article also states:
Of the 16,264 people living in Secaucus, 12.26 percent are Hispanic or Latino, according to the 2010 U.S. Census. While this number pales in comparison to neighboring cities like North Bergen where more than half the population is Hispanic or Latino, or Union City where they are the dominant ethnic group, Secaucus Latinos said they are seeking more events that celebrate culture and language closer to home.
Latinos like Ms. Tropeano are proud of their heritage while contributing to the diversity that dominates America today. They are trying to raise bi-cultural children vs ones that are ashamed of their parents origins and language. This is how ignorance is fought by educating and enlightening our young ones.
Thus, we congratulate Ms. Tropeano for her courage and initiative and hope that her “Story Hour” continues to be part of the Secaucus library program, not just for Latino children but also for young children of all races residing in the area.
(Photo by Adriana Rambay Fernández)
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