Vocabulary for Mexico Latin America – all land south of the US Middle America – Mexico, Central America, and Caribbean Islands Sierra Madre Mountain Range – surrounds the Central Plateau in Mexico Central Plateau – largest land region in Mexico
Vocabulary Yucatan Peninsula – a peninsula off the southeast coast of Mexico; splits the Gulf of Mexico from the Caribbean Sea – Maya lived here Baja Peninsula – a long peninsula off the northwest coast of Mexico; it is separated from the mainland of Mexico by the Gulf of California. Sonoran Desert – a desert in northwestern Mexico near the US border
Vocabulary Aztecs - early Native American civilization of Mexico haciendas – large ranches Roman Catholic – Mexico’s major religion Spanish – the official language of Mexico fiesta – Spanish word for festival Father Miguel Hildalgo – father of Mexican Independence Our Lady of Guadalupe – patroness of the Americas
Key Terms Land bridge Subsistence farming Adobe Peninsula
The Land Mexico is located on the continent of North America, south of the US. Mexico is bordered by the US to the north, Guatemala and Belize to the south, the Gulf of Mexico to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. Mexico was once called “land of the shaking earth” because of its many earthquakes.
Cities Mexico City – capital city and most populated city in the Western Hemisphere Acapulco –major seaport for shipping & cruise lines; large tourist resort
Cities Guadalajara – second most populated city; located in central eastern Mexico; center of culture, history, economy and industry.
Climate Mexico’s climate is hot and humid in the lower valleys and cooler in the mountain tops. Mexico’s rainy season is May to October.
The Economy Service industries strengthen the country’s economy. A service industry is a business that provides services to people instead of making goods. Banking and tourism are Mexico’s main service industries.
Economy The manufacturing of cars, textiles and processed foods are other industries important to Mexico. Mexico is the world’s leading producer of silver. Oil is Mexico’s most important natural resource.
…Economy cont. Although rich in minerals, Mexico is poor in fertile land. Central Mexico is the economic heart of the country, home of Mexico City. In the south are subsistence farms,small plots where farmers grow only enough food to feed their families. Tourism is also important in the south with beautiful beaches. Mexico has become less a country of farms and villages and more of a country of factories and cities, this is a result of industrialization.
The People 60% of Mexico’s people are mestizos. Mestizos are people of mixed Native American and European ancestries. Mexican homes are usually made of adobe, or sun-dried clay brick.
…People cont. Every village has a marketplace where families sell or trade clothes, food, baskets, or pottery. For celebrations, Mexicans throw fiestas. Fiestas are festivals that include parades, fireworks, music, and dancing. Cinco de Mayo (May 5 th ) is a Mexican national holiday. Soccer is the country’s most popular sport.
The Food Traditional Mexican food combines Spanish and Native American cooking. Corn has always been the most important food in Mexico.
…Food cont. Mexicans make tortillas, a thin flat cornmeal bread shaped by hands and cooked on a griddle. A folded tortilla filled with vegetables, cheese, beans, and meat becomes a taco. Tacos are not only a favorite Mexican food, they are also enjoyed by many Americans.
Mexican Wrap Up The culture of modern Mexico mixes old and new art, music, and literature grown from Native American, Spanish, and Mexican roots. Por Favor, Adios!