Global Arts for Global Kids 

Week #2:  Mexican Folkloric Dances and Wardrobes with FTH Teaching Artist Alberto Lopez


We are pleased to announce the return of our renowned, virtual global arts programming “FTH at HOME: Global Arts for Global Kids II.” Lessons are provided Monday through Friday at 2 PM on FTH WebsiteFacebook and Youtube Channel. Each day students will enjoy a short 5-10 minutes pre-recorded video lesson and a post-lesson activity. An additional virtual interactive option is available for school classes or family learning groups to work with FTH master teaching artists --- learn more about our “Meet the Artist/Jam with the Artist” live virtual workshops. 


This week’s lessons introduce you to Mexican folkloric dances and wardrobes led by Flushing Town Hall Teaching Artist Alberto Lopez. Alberto is a master dance teacher, choreographer, costume designer and artistic director of Calpulli Mexican Dance company. With Alberto, you will learn five traditional dances from different regions of Mexico and identify their locations on the map. You will also have the opportunity to see his company’s beautiful collections of traditional dance wardrobes, sombreros, headpieces and connect them to Mexico’s diverse geography and climate. Let’s now follow Alberto to explore the rich cultural heritage of Mexico!  


Day 1 

In the first lesson, FTH Teaching Artist Alberto Lopez will teach a traditional dance of the Parachicos celebration in Chiapas, Mexico ---- El Lepero. Parachicos translates to “for the boy” --- so-named because it is believed the dance was originally performed to entertain a sick boy.  Alberto will also explain the geography of Chiapas and show you the Chiapas woman’s dance dress adorned with rich, colorful floral embroidery (a design that demonstrates the boy’s mother’s status and Spanish influences). You can further learn about Mexican traditional dress designs with this activity worksheet:  



Day 2 

Today FTH Teaching Artist Alberto Lopez takes us to Sinaloa, the northwest coast of Mexico. He will teach us another traditional dance El Sauce Y la Palma. Its zapateado dance style will remind you of tap dance--- danced to the upbeat carnival music. Alberto will also teach you how to quickly design your own headpiece. In Mexico, it is a tradition for dancers to use headpieces in every celebration! You can also make a felt flower headpiece with this activity worksheet:



Day 3

If you like mariachi music, check out today’s lesson as FTH Teaching Artist Alberto Lopez introduces you to the traditions of the birthplace of mariachi ---- Jalisco, Mexico. You will have a glimpse of Jalisco ribbon dress, learn how to give an exciting Mexican grito (shout-out), and practice the fandangos (party) celebration dance Los Machetes with dance prop machetes. Historically this dance was performed by farmers who were celebrating their harvest of sugarcane and they used their cutting tools (machetes) to create a complicated and daring dance choreography. Today dancers stay safe using sticks as dance props, but you can use a ruler or rolled up magazine.  In addition to a tour of different traditional sombreros, you can also use this worksheet to draw your own hat style:



Day 4

The calabaceado, a cowboy dancing style with influences from the USA, is a regional dance from the north of Mexico, specifically from the state of Baja California. This dance reflects the ranching life-style of the region with lively steps and kicks while wearing  cowboy hats and boots. Today FTH Teaching Artist Alberto Lopez will demonstrate the basic dance steps of No te rajes Tijuana, and teach you to make a paper flower ornament like this:



Day 5

In the last lesson, FTH Teaching Artist Alberto Lopez introduces you to one of the most beautiful and hottest cities in Mexico ---- Monterrey, Nuevo Leon (not too far from the Texas border). You will learn the basic Monterrey caminados (steps) and stamping through a traditional dance El Cerro de la Cilla. This dance is actually a polka, a dance form that came to northern Mexico in the late 19th Century with the German immigrants who came to the region to work. You can practice the dance with or without a partner! Then check out this worksheet to make a bow and add to your wardrobe collection:



Thank you for joining this week's global arts journey with FTH Teaching Artist Alberto Lopez! 


Looking for additional options for student enrichment? Check out our live low-cost virtual workshops (Meet the Artist / Jam with the Artist) that provide opportunities for school classes or family learning groups to work with our teaching artists. If you have any questions, please contact the Education Department at


We look forward to seeing you again in Week 3 Mini Art Museums with Famous Artist Portraits with FTH Teaching Artist Suzanne DeMarco.



Global Arts for Global Kids II series is supported by National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the Howard Gilman Foundation, and Guru Krupa Foundation. If you enjoyed these free online lessons and resources, please consider making a tax-deductible gift to support our artists to create more free arts education for schools and families.