Isn’t 2014 flying by? I can’t believe its already the end of January, but on the Lunar calendar it’s just the beginning. So Happy Chinese New Year to you. It’s The Year of The Horse! I’m an Ox, how about you?
I usually share Chinese traditions with my kids at home, but this year I’m also sharing with my son’s kindergarten class. It’s a great way to incorporate culture in a fun way and my son is excited to talk about it with his friends. I brought mandarin oranges to share, red envelopes (hong bao) filled with a crisp dollar bill, and read a book.
I wanted to find some books that were good for kids to share some of the traditions and fun of Chinese New Year.
If you’re looking for some here are my favorites
Sam and the Lucky Money
I read this ones to the Kindergarteners. I love that it is about Chinese New Year, but doesn’t just talk about the traditions and what they mean. It takes you through the experience of a child during Chinese New Year. Through that you learn about the culture. It’s a great story with a lesson about sharing and being grateful for what you have. The Chinese phrases are in Cantonese, we speak Mandarin so I just changed it. For example “Gung Hay Fat Chow” is Cantonese, we say “Xing Nian Quai Luh!”
Here’s a great one for preschoolers. It’s more simple and has fun lift flaps that make sharing more interactive.
For more about the culture and traditions here’s a link to some great free coloring sheets and zodiac printables to find your year. check out my post-How To Celebrate Chinese New Year!
Or if food is more your focus check out Chinese New Year-Tradition,Food And Family. Tonight I’m going to make a Chinese dinner with fish, noodles and dumplings!
Here are some more tips on how to teach Chinese New Year In School from one of favorite writers-HapaMama
And this is just the beginning…celebrations can go on for weeks. There will be lots of festivals this weekend and next so take a look at your community calendars if you want to join in the fun!