Chinese New Year is a celebration of the lunar new year and is one of the most important holidays in Chinese culture. Celebrated by millions all over the world, it is a time for families to come together, honor their ancestors, and welcome in good luck and fortune for the year ahead. The beautiful and unique traditions associated with this holiday are perfect for teaching children about different cultures in a way that’s educational and fun!
- Decorate your home with red and gold decorations - Red and gold are considered lucky colors in Chinese culture, and are often used to decorate homes and streets during the holiday. You can hang red lanterns, paper cuttings, and other decorations to bring good luck and prosperity to your home. Bonus points if you and your kids can make your own red and gold paper crafts!
- Cook and eat traditional Chinese New Year foods - Foods like dumplings, fish, and noodles are believed to bring good luck and prosperity in the new year. You can find recipes online or visit a Chinese restaurant to try some of these dishes. Don’t forget to eat a few oranges for good fortune!
- Watch a Chinese New Year parade - Many cities around the world hold parades to celebrate the holiday, complete with colorful floats, traditional dance performances, and fireworks. Check to see if there is a parade happening near you and go watch it with your family or friends.
- Learn about the Chinese zodiac - Each year is associated with one of 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac, and it is believed that a person's characteristics and fortune are influenced by the animal they are born under. Your children will get a kick out of discovering their sign and learning about the traits associated with their birth year.
- Make red envelopes - Red envelopes, also known as "hongbao," are a traditional gift during Chinese New Year. They are filled with small amounts of money and given to children and unmarried adults as a symbol of good luck. You can make your own red envelopes by cutting red paper into small rectangles and writing a wish for good luck on the inside.
- Research Chinese New Year customs and traditions - There are many more customs and traditions associated with Chinese New Year, such as lighting firecrackers to ward off evil spirits and cleaning the house to sweep away bad luck. Take your little ones to the library to discover a few more fascinating customs your family can incorporate into your celebration this year. There are plenty of children’s books packed with information and beautiful illustrations that are sure to peak your little one’s interest!