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Today is Chinese New Year

Thursday 3rd February 2011

In 2011, Chinese New Year is celebrated on February 3. In the Chinese calendar, it is now the year 4708, and the year of the Rabbit. The Chinese lunar calendar names each year after an animal and the Chinese believe the year in which a person is born has a profound influence on personality, saying "This is the animal that hides in your heart."

Of all the traditional Chinese festivals, the Chinese New Year is the oldest, the most important and the most elaborate. It’s also known as the spring festival and celebrates the start of new life and the coming season of ploughing and sowing. You can find plenty of free Chinese New Year teaching resources online to help teach pupils about the traditions and history of the celebrations.

The Chinese New year is celebrated on the first day of the first moon of the lunar calendar. The corresponding date in the solar calendar varies from as early as January 21st, to as late as February 19th.  Social and family gatherings are held at Chinese New Year, and it’s a period for family reunions, visiting friends, and spending time with relatives.

Chinese New Year is marked in many schools around the UK in order to teach pupils more about annual traditions that originate in countries other than their own. Children can take part in the celebrations by making Chinese lanterns decorated in with bright traditional colours. They can also learn about Chinese food, games, folklore, crafts, stories, and all about the traditional Chinese dragon dance performed by groups of dancers carrying a dragon made from paper, silk and bamboo.


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