Thursday, February 7, 2013

Celebrating Diversity With Chinese New Year Activities

Hello again and Gung Hay Fat Choy, or Happy Chinese New Year! It's Ayn from little illuminations

If you know me or read my blog, little illuminations, you know that we celebrate diversity in my pre-k classroom. I try to include a variety of cultural celebrations throughout the year, especially those celebrated by my students. Sometimes it seems hard to present information on holidays that you personally don't celebrate, but even a few small activities can help every student feel included, special and important.

I usually touch on Chinese New Year in my class, but since we have a couple of Asian students in our Pre-K group this year, I'm giving it a little more attention. I had planned on several activities, but the children have really been interested in learning more so we keep finding fun ways to learn about this holiday!

Chinese New Year begins on February 10th this year and lasts for 15 days. Each year is named for one of the 12 animals of the Chinese zodiac. 2013 is the Year of the Snake.

Today I'm sharing some of the fun things we've done so far. There is still so much more fun ahead! On Friday, one of our class moms will bring the traditional costumes for both boys and girls for us to see, share some of the traditional holiday customs and also make Chinese dumplings for us to taste! We are very excited!

These Chinese lanterns are fun to make, great practice for cutting skills and make lovely decorations!

We are using kabob skewers as improvised chopsticks and practicing our chopstick skills by picking up pom poms. I thought the children would tire of this quickly, but even after a few days, it remains a popular free choice activity!

I was making one or two of these firecrackers to decorate a bulletin board and the kids jumped right in and started making tons of these! We just used small rectangles of red paper and made designs with markers and added a little white pipe cleaner for a fuse.

I made this little snake as a prop for one of our class discussions.

Later, some of the kids made some of their own snakes in art center.

They have also made a few dragons.

We've also been reading some great books about celebrating Chinese New Year. Here are a few of our favorites:


Be sure to stop by little illuminations next week for more of our Chinese New Year Activities! We will be making dragon puppets, paper fortune cookies (and writing our own fortunes!) and having a dragon parade! See you there!

Gung Hay Fat Choy!!!  

Stop by and visit me anytime at or visit the little illuminations fanpage on facebook! And be sure to check out PreK+K Sharing EEE!



  1. GREAT IDEAS, Ayn! Once children make your crafts, they could check out my January 16 blog here at PreKandK Sharing for movement activities! I spent a lot of yesterday making dragon heads!
    Carole (Peterson) Stephens

  2. Such nice ideas! Thank you! How lucky your kiddos are to experience these activities
    in your classroom! Brigid Finucane

  3. I can see that you are putting a lots of efforts into your blog. Keep posting the good work. Some really helpful information in there. Nice to see your site. Thank

    Chinese Lessons for Kids


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