Looking for some ideas to teach your class about Chinese New Year? Here is a craft, a book, a cooking activity, and a coloring page to help teach your kids in pre-K, Kindergarten, and first grade all about Chinese New Year! Read on to find out more.
1. Chinese New Year Craft
This is a picture of our Chinese New Year Craft that I always did with my students! To do the project, we would draw the Chinese symbols and their English translations on index cards so that the children could copy them. We talked about the fact that the Chinese use picture writing rather than an alphabet, and discuss that the symbols look something like the real thing. Children in China must learn to make all of these symbols, not just 26 letters!
To make the symbols, the children used black pastel chalk. Then they went over it with colored chalk by dragging it on its side as shown to make stripes. After that, they would blend the whole thing together by painting it over the top of it with water, using a paint brush.
2. Eating White Rice with CHOPSTICKS!
One thing that I really LOVED to do with the children is to give them some freshly cooked white rice and some chopsticks and watch them try to eat it! To do this, I would bring my steamer to school, and make white rice. I mixed it with butter and a little salt, and then put it into Dixie cups, and sent the children OUTSIDE to try to eat the rice with the chopsticks! Most of the children really liked the rice! They said that it tasted like popcorn. I’m sure it was the butter and salt on it. If you make the rice kind of wet and sticky, they will be able to push it into their mouths with the chopsticks.
3. A GREAT Book for Chinese New Year: Cleversticks
A great book to go with this is Cleversticks, by Bernard Ashley, which is the story of a little boy that moves to the US and doesn’t know English, but he does know how to use chopsticks! When his teacher discovers his talent, she has him show the whole class how to do it, and he feels smart and special. I love this book because it shows the children that we each have a special talent to share.
4. Reading About Chinese New Year, and Coloring a Picture
I always like to read something informational to the children about each holiday, and it’s always nice to have a little picture for them to color! My Holidays Around the World book has a page in it about Chinese New Year that is short and simple, and just right for Kindergarten, if I do say so myself!
I hope you found this post helpful! How will you teach Chinese New Year to your students? Please share!
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