Honoring Ancestors: an Activity for Día de los Muertos

Every year, Mexican cultures remember deceased family members with gifts and celebration on November 2, Día de los Muertos. This “Day of the Dead” is the grandest holiday of the year for many families, involving parades, decorated graves and cemeteries, costumes, music, and delicious and abundant food. UNESCO recently added Día de los Muertos to its list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, meaning it’s a holiday tradition everyone can benefit from observing.

If you think about it, Día de los Muertos and our family trees are related to coding! Our DNA, which ties us to our ancestors, is our genetic code. The Human Genome Project set out on an expedition to map this code, and determined that all human beings are 99.9% the same, in genetic terms. There’s a specific pattern of programming that makes us tick and ties us together as people, but then the expression of that code gives us our unique differences.

Discover what you share in common with your family members who loved and lived before you (and how each person expresses their own personalities) with this Ozobot Color Codes activity!

You’ll need:

Did Disney’s Coco inspire you to create your own family’s ofrenda, or altar of offerings and gifts to honor ancestors? Well, now you can! First step in creating your own Ozobot ofrenda is to research your ancestors (parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, uncles, aunts…whoever you wish to celebrate)! Ask living family members for stories about what they liked, including colors, foods, animals, items, places, activities, and more.

Next, take your family tree template and draw in the lines (keeping codes blank for now) to the family members you are honoring. Check out the Color Code Reference Chart to plan how you’ll place Intersection, Direction, and U-Turn codes to make sure Ozobot will walk from the first line and visit every branch.

Code your tree(s), then decorate the ofrendas with drawings of things your ancestors would have enjoyed, or even small toys or stickers if you wish! Decorate your bot by sticking a cut out sugar skull to the top to give Evo or Bit its own celebratory costume, and set Ozobot off on the journey to honor your ancestors and their stories.

Also, let us know if your family has a different tradition for celebrating your loved ones! However you decide to honor your ancestors, tell their stories to the world. Share your creation with us @Ozobot and mention the #OzoSquad!

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