By Sissy Shen (Head of Primary Chinese) and Michelle Wang (ECE Coordinator)
Chinese Spring Festival, also called Lunar New Year, comes on the first day of the Chinese lunar calendar and lasts for 15 days. It is the grandest and most important traditional festival for Chinese people and as we celebrate family reunions, it is similar to Christmas Day for the families from the west.
Every family does a thorough house cleaning and purchases new clothes, especially for children. The Chinese character ‘Fu’ is pasted on the center of the door and paper-cut pictures adorn windows. Red scrolls with complementary poetic couplets, one line on each side of the gate are added. Also, a lot of food is prepared, including meat, fish, roasted nuts and seeds, all kinds of candies and fruits, etc. Dumplings and the reunion dinner are indispensable at this time. Food during this happy event has its characteristics, which is the representative of the Chinese festival food culture.
BBC filmed a documentary “Chinese New Year: The Biggest Celebration on Earth” last year which brought an amazing insight into the massive annual celebration. You may find the videos here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b071c3mh/episodes/guide
At YCIS, we value the best from Eastern culture, refer to article: Mono-culture VS Multi-culture, which one is more international？ and our teachers are always looking for opportunities to integrate developmentally appropriate Chinese learning. As one of our major traditional events, the Chinese New Year event was far more than just having fun and celebrating; it was a whole school Project Based learning experience, which allowed both ECE and Primary students to explore different features of Chinese culture to help them gain a greater insight and connection to the country they currently live in.
- dressing in traditional Chinese costume and dancing to Chinese songs,
- making dumplings and sticky rice balls to understand more about Chinese culture;
- the performance gave students and teachers a stage to show their talents in literature and art;
- the Bulletin Board Design demonstrated various topics students learned in Chinese Studies lessons;
- the games and activities were to fully engage the Chinese New Year theme, including art, handcrafts, puzzles, PE and ICT activities, to build a joyful and unique learning experience.
Furthermore, it offered opportunities to develop Y6 students’ organizational capability and leadership skills by sharing their knowledge and providing assistance for the younger students during the event. All of these activities helped our students develop an understanding of the Chinese culture in every aspect. You can click here to see pictures of the event.
We wish you and your family a have wonderful new year with luck, happiness and smiles around you.