This free printable Day of the Dead word search word search puzzle is a fun, no-prep activity for kids and families. Pick from two different word searches - one in English and one in Spanish - to suit your needs!
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For more word search fun, be sure to grab this free printable fall word search puzzle and this Thanksgiving word search. If you really love word search puzzles, be sure to check out my 101 themed word search puzzles book in print.
This Day of the Dead word search puzzle is great for kids of all ages, and senior citizens, too! Here are some ideas for ways to use these word puzzles in your home or classroom:
- As early finishers
- In literacy centers
- As morning work
- In a packet left for substitute teachers
- In an ELA lesson
- In a Spanish lesson
- For family game night
Word search puzzles aren't just fun - they can also be a fantastic educational tool. They can help improve your child or student's spelling skills, fine motor skills, and attention to detail. They can keep older adult's minds sharp, too.
Because this word search has an English Day of the Dead version and a Spanish language Dia de los Muertos version, it's perfect for social studies lessons as well as language arts classes.
Table of Contents
Teaching the Day of the Dead to Children
The Day of the Dead is not "Mexican Halloween."
Although Mexico is famous for its Day of the Dead traditions, the holiday is celebrated throughout Latin America. These word searches include the words "kite" and "Barriletas" because the traditional Guatemalan celebrations include beautiful, large, handmade kites.
The Day of the Dead, or Dia de los Muertos, is a day to honor and remember your Ancestors. It is usually celebrated on November 1 and 2. Some places celebrate November 1 as the Dia de los Angelitos, a day to specifically commemorate children who have passed with November 2 as the Dia de los Muertos, proper.
This day coincides with All Saints Day (November 1), All Souls Day (November 2), Hallowmass, or All Hallows' Day. (This is where the name "Halloween" comes from - the eve of Hallows' Day.)
There is a lot of debate about how much Latin American Day of the Dead tradition came from indigenous practices and how much game from European influences.
How little or how much you want to teach your child or students about the holiday and its traditions depends on their level and your comfort with teaching it. Part of the holiday is about accepting that, one day, we will all die. This may or may not feel comfortable to you.
There are many regional variations in how, exactly, the Day of the Dead is celebrated. If you know someone in your community who grew up celebrating the Day of the Dead, or who stills celebrates it, interviewing them or having them come speak to your class would be a wonderful way to teach the holiday authentically.
If that's not an option for you, Mi Familia is a colorful, bilingual book about the Day of the Dead that's suitable for younger elementary aged children. We enjoy purchasing bilingual books because we're a bilingual household. (My husband is a Hispanic immigrant.)
- Hernandez, Camila (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 24 Pages - 09/06/2022 (Publication Date) - Independently published (Publisher)
Day of the Dead word search printable
There are two versions of this printable word search. One is in English and the other in Spanish. The words are not identical in the two puzzles. There are ten words in each list to keep the puzzle simpler and easier for younger students.
Day of the Dead English word list:
Dia de los Muertos Spanish word search list:
- Pan de muerto
- Papel picado
How to print and use printable puzzle activities
You can simply download your free word search puzzles, but here are some tips to help you make the most of your printables.
As an adult, you might not find the idea of solving the same word search puzzle multiple times appealing. However, kids frequently enjoy doing the same activity multiple times.
If you want to make the activity reusable, either for an individual child or for repeated use as literacy center activities, laminate the page or slide it into a dry erase pocket. I also like using secure, heavy duty page protectors.
I think heavy duty page protectors are the perfect way to quickly make reusable worksheets. They cost less per page than dry erase pockets and they're easy to keep organized in a three ring binder.
- Keep contents secure in the protective sleeve with convenient top flap; perfect for holding nonstandard size papers and important items
- Get a crisp, clear view of the contents of your documents with diamond clear page protectors featuring a polished finish for high clarity
- Ensure your documents stay protected with long-lasting super heavyweight sheet protectors for all of your frequently referenced items
Instead of using a wet or dry erase marker, we prefer to use Stabilo Woody 3 in 1 pencils. They write very well and they're easy to wipe off. There's no stink and no ink! They will even wash off white walls. See them in action on this post with Dinosaur coloring pages.
- Stabilo Woody 3 in 1 Multi Talented Jumbo Pencils
- 3 in 1.... You get a XXL Coloured Pencil, Watercolour Pencil and Wax Crayon all in 1!
- Includes a Child Safety Sharpener
Printable Day of the Dead word search PDF download area
Both of the printable games are included in the same convenient PDF file. The answer key is also included.
This printable word puzzle is licensed for personal use, which includes single classroom use. You are not licensed to redistribute or sell the print outs or riles to others. Please refer friends and colleagues to this post so they can download their own copy for their children/students.
If you agree to this license, you may click below. The download should start automatically, but you may need to authorize downloads from Dropbox if asked for permission.
I hope you enjoy this free Day of the Dead word search printable! Be sure to check out the posts linked below for more word search games with different themes.