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Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo, which means Fifth of May in Spanish, commemorates a significant battle during the Franco-Mexican War that took place on 5 May 1862 in Puebla, a town in Mexico.

Cinco de Mayo is celebrated by Mexican people living in Puebla and across America but is not observed throughout the whole of Mexico. Many people mistake Cinco de Mayo for Mexican Independence Day, which is a separate holiday on 16 September.

In America and Puebla, Cinco de Mayo is celebrated through parades, food, music, dancing and battle reenactments.

Interesting facts about Cinco de Mayo:

  • Cinco de Mayo is also celebrated in the Cayman Islands, where there is a yearly air guitar competition!
  • In Mexico, Cinco de Mayo is referred to as ‘El Día de la Batalla de Puebla’, which means ‘The Day of the Battle of Puebla’.
  • Many people celebrate Cinco de Mayo by wearing red, white and green - the colours of the Mexican flag.

Activities for children with vision impairment

Enjoy some fiesta fun with these family-friendly activities.

Move to the Music!

Find a Cinco de Mayo playlist and celebrate by moving, shaking and making lots of happy memories! If you have some maracas, use these as you dance or make your own by filling small plastic bottles with dried rice, pulses or pasta pieces.

Here are some links to get you started:

Learn some new lingo!

It’s always fun to learn a new language. Here are some simple Spanish words and phrases that you can practise as a family. You already know ‘Cinco de Mayo’ which means ‘Fifth of May’ but do you recognise any more from the list below?

  • Hello = Hola
  • Goodbye = Adios
  • Please = Por favor
  • Thank you = Gracias
  • You’re welcome = De nada
  • How are you? = ¿Cómo estás?
  • Good = Bien
  • Yes = Si
  • No = No

Top tip: If you want to hear the correct pronunciation of these words, type them into Google Translate.

Do you know any more words or phrases in Spanish that we haven’t listed above? If so, we’d love you to share them on our Facebook group

Make some delicious nachos!

Ignacio “Nacho” Anaya, a chef working in a restaurant in Piedras Negras, is said to have created this delicious dish in 1943, using tortilla chips, melted cheese and sliced jalapenos. The local snack quickly gained popularity around the world and each place adds its own delicious twist on this tasty Tex-Mex staple!

This recipe serves four people for lunch or may go a little further as a delicious snack or accompaniment.


  • 1 cup of mild salsa
  • 1 cup or can of drained black or refried beans
  • 1 cup of drained tomatoes
  • 2 cups of grated cheese
  • Several handfuls of tortilla chips


  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
  2. Spread the tortilla chips in a thin layer over a baking tray. As a guide, try to use at least one handful per person.
  3. Sprinkle all the ingredients on top, finishing with the cheese.
  4. Bake for 10 minutes, or until the cheese melts and starts to bubble.
  5. Enjoy whilst listening to your Cinco de Mayo playlist!

Cinco de Mayo websites for children

There are many websites which explore Cinco de Mayo in a child-friendly way. Here are some links to get you started: