Immersion in Spanish culture

Different from learning Spanish in a  class, Diamond Bar High School’s Spanish club provides students more opportunities to immerse themselves in the language and culture through themed presentations and activities.

“[Students] can express their love for their culture by sharing traditional dishes with others to appreciate the different tastes,” co-president senior Bella Licea said. “People can learn the traditional dances and listen to the music while having fun and learning about the culture.”

Although the club has been unable to hold monthly meetings in-person due to COVID-19, they have met virtually, showing their themed presentations and participating in activities, which include playing games such as Kahoot, watching videos and using breakout rooms to have fun interactions with each other.

 “Social media is also very important so we can communicate with our members about when we will host meetings and post important documents and announcements to our new club Google Classroom,” Licea said.

Prior to the pandemic, the Spanish club would try new foods together, such as empanadas and yerba mate, and held dances as part of their activities to spread the culture to students on campus. They also had a booth used to sell churros and other Spanish treats for families to try and enjoy at the DBHS open houses last year.

“We also host fundraisers and take part in school events, such as food fairs, to raise money for our club,” Licea said. “Currently, we do not have any upcoming fundraisers, however, we will continue having our monthly meetings for members to attend.”

About 60 to 70 members attended their “Carnaval en España” themed March meeting, where they held a costume contest to incorporate a carnival atmosphere. Winners earned a gift card for traditional pastries from Valerio’s Tropical Bakeshop, a Spanish bakery.

“My favorite part of the club is having the opportunity to immerse myself in Spanish culture, since there isn’t really much of a point in learning the language if we aren’t also learning about the various customs and traditions in Spanish-speaking countries,” publicist senior Sri Bondada said via Instagram.

Bondada said he hopes to consistently have over 100 attendees at their meetings. He also said he enjoys hosting monthly meetings on topics relevant to the month, such as holidays that are celebrated in Spanish-speaking countries.

“Spanish club hopes to return back to normal and on campus so we can share Spanish foods to our members again,” Licea said. “I am hopeful that we will continue to spread Spanish culture to the students on campus and that we will gain more members in the future.”