How Do You Celebrate Día de Los Reyes?
We have some bad news… the holidays are sadly over. But want to hear the good news? The holiday spirit is well alive, as we need to celebrate Día de Los Reyes! Día de Los Reyes is a joyous holiday that requires little preparation. This is one of Mexico’s most beloved holidays as it brings families together to laugh, talk, and enjoy a delicious treat that warms you up from within!
At Casa, we are excited to share this tradition with our families on the morning of January 6th. Everyone can enjoy a slice of traditional Rosca de Reyes and a cup of Mexican hot chocolate. We encourage our families to learn about our intercultural celebrations to foster respect, understanding, and inclusivity of all cultures. So, how can you celebrate Día de Los Reyes at home?
Step One: Learn about Día de Los Reyes.
When celebrating a new holiday, it is essential to understand its history and why people celebrate it today. For parents, we recommend reading this blog post. Then during bedtime, tell your little ones the story of this holiday and answer their questions as best as possible. You may also write down your questions and ask our teachers the next day! If your child loves images, we recommend reading this book. And if you are up for reading a book in Spanish, this one is a great option.
Another great resource to learn about this holiday is watching this video made by Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose. They show what a Rosca de Reyes looks like and give you tips on how to decorate your shoebox.
Step Two: Write a letter to the three kings.
Now that you know more about the holiday, you are ready to celebrate! The next step is writing a letter to the Three Kings. Traditionally, children will get smaller toys or food for this holiday as the focus is not on presents but family. So, sit down with your little one and brainstorm ideas of what they would like. Additionally, draw something for the Three Kings to keep, such as a drawing of them on the camels! After the beautiful letter is complete, place it near the door or on the tree.
Step Three: Design a crown.
These crowns will be worn on January 6th. Design a crown made out of recyclable materials and other items you have at home! Then, assist your little one with cutting or gluing. Here is how to engage your child in the process.
Step Four: Leave shoes or a shoe box by the door along with food for the camels.
In Mexico, clean shoes or a shoe box are left near the front door, bed, or tree instead of leaving a stocking by the chimney. This is where the Three Kings will leave the presents, and their camels will stop for a quick snack! If you decide to leave a shoe, clean it well and leave some water and hay/grass off to the side. If you decide to leave a show box, you can also decorate it with your little one and fill the inside with a bowl of water and some grass.
Step Five: On the night of January 5th, exchange the camel food with gifts!
Shhh, don’t let your little one know, but this is what happens behind the magic. Do this step very carefully! Then, on the morning of January 6th, your little one will be able to run down and see what presents they got.
Step Six: Eat a Rosca de Reyes and drink some hot chocolate.
This is the most delicious part of the holiday. You may buy the Rosca de Reyes by going to your local Mexican bakery, or you may choose to try the following recipe. The Rosca is a lightly sweetened bread that typically hides a mini figurine of baby Jesus. Traditionally, families will come together to cut their own slice of the cake. If your slice has the baby Jesus inside, you must invite your family over again for a tamales dinner on February 2nd! Please be careful when biting into the cake, as a figurine could be hiding in your cake.
Rosca de Reyes is enjoyed alongside Mexican hot chocolate, which you can find at your local store!
Ready to celebrate Día de Los Reyes?