Saturday, February 1, 2014

How we celebrate Chinese New Year in China

Xin Nian Kuai Le! (Mandarin)
Gong Hay Fat Choy! (Cantonese)

Happy Chinese New Year!
The month of January has been a very busy for me because it is sandwiched by two important holidays, Christmas and Chinese New Year.  At the international school I teach at, we get two weeks off for Christmas, then 3 weeks of school, and then another two weeks off for Chinese New Year.

 I feel very blessed to basically get a double holiday break.  Since I am Chinese American, this Chinese New Year was a little strange for me.  This is the first Chinese New Year I spent without my family.  I miss eating my mom's homemade Chinese food and the big banquets we would have in Ohio.  Sadly there is only a handful of good Chinese restaurants in my hometown state.  I miss collecting all of my red envelopes from relatives, family friends, and church friends.  On Skype, my Mawmaw (grandma) in Hong Kong teased me by flashing my red envelope on the screen saying I had to come visit her to receive it. 

Instead, I went to the Philippines with two of my co-workers to relax on the sunny beaches and away from the wintery weather of Northern China. 
Laying by the pool among the coconut trees

I didn't want to leave the Philippines!
Below are a few pictures I did with my Kindergarteners on the Friday before Chinese New Year break.  Our school had "China Day" where everyone was encouraged to dress in traditional Chinese clothes and/or wear red if they didn't own any.  I wore my mother's Qi Pao (Woman's dress) that she wore at her wedding banquet.  :)

Photo booth

Making rice cakes with different flavor jelly on top

Chinese calligraphy

Listening to Chinese stories and folktales

This man is creating beautiful pictures made out of melted candy sugar

Lion dance

Some of the kindergarteners performing a Chinese song.

Watching the firecrackers in our school's courtyard.

Kinders played with ribbon streamers while dancing to Chinese New Year songs.

Lion and Dragon dance in the auditorium. 

If you visit my TpT and TN stores, check out my Chinese New Year Thematic unit that is on for sale for 50%.  Many of the activities and crafts in the unit I remembered doing as a child when my mom would visit my classroom to share about Chinese New Year and Chinese culture.  The links are on the right sidebars.

Come back later this week to see what else I did in my classroom to celebrate CNY. 

I hope you will have a "whinny-ing" year!