The celebration of Cinco de Mayo (meaning 5th of May in Spanish) should not be confused with Mexican Independence Day. Mexican Independence Day is celebrated on 15th September (eve of Independence Day) while Cinco de Mayo falls on 5th of May. Mexico declared its independence from Spain on 24th August, 1821. This modern holiday began when a group of California State University students decided to hold the first Cinco de Mayo commemoration in the United States. This was around 1967. The students felt that there was no Chicano holidays and needed to do something about it. They wanted something to recapture their history and identity and decided that the Battle of Puebla was symbolic and they could connect it to their struggle for the formation of a Chicano Studies program at the university. For some great ideas to do with children to celebrate this day visit: http://www.kiddyhouse.com/Holidays/Cinco/.