Bringing in Chinese New Year

Nicola Davison
04th January 2017
Chinese New Year, 2017 Chinese New Year, Year of the Rooster, Spring festival, EYFS, primary

Explore the traditions and customs of Chinese New Year with these hand-picked resources

The year of the rooster is nearly upon us! Chinese New Year, also known as Spring Festival, marks the first day of a brand new year in the Chinese calendar. The peak of the 15-day celebrations will take place on Saturday 28 January, when people traditionally celebrate with festival meals, dancing and the giving and receiving of hongbao (red money envelopes).

So why not get in the festive spirit and celebrate with your class? Here are some of our favourite Chinese New Year resources:

Resources for young learners

Introduce the story behind the 12 animals of the Chinese zodiac with this simple presentation, before playing this lotto game to help consolidate understanding.

Prepare pupils for their own Chinese New Year parade by getting them to decorate these full-face masks and learn this specially written song with adaptable lyrics.

For even more ideas, have a look at this themed day plan, which outlines a further six activities to try with your class.

Primary resources

Entertain and inform students about the customs of Chinese New Year and the story of Nian the dragon in this well-presented assembly presentation

Students can use this Chinese zodiac spinner to find out the characteristics of the animal that corresponds with their birthday and show their learning by completing this colouring sheet.

Alternatively, pupils can practise colouring halves and quarters on this adaptable fractions worksheet or finding the shapes in tangram images as part of this hands-on activity.

Secondary resources

From its ageing population to the tourist hotspots, this detailed workbook gives older students a useful introduction to the country and people of China. Learners can then get into the spirit of the festival by completing this web-based comprehension activity about the preparations leading up to New Year’s Day itself. 

Encourage your class to learn a little bit of Chinese to ensure a more authentic celebration with this vocabulary sheet. Then why not move on to a class discussion about the similarities and differences between your students’ characters and their zodiac animal using this festive presentation?    

This Chinese New Year murder mystery combines maths and logical thinking to make an engaging addition to any celebration.

Quick links

Have we forgotten your go-to Chinese New Year resource? Let us know and be sure to include a link to the resource.

This post was originally published on 27 January 2016, and was refreshed on 4 January 2017.

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