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Sunday, February 7, 2010

Chinese New Year Activities to do with your toddler/ preschooler

While working in Asia for 3 years I was able to celebrate Chinese New year with my students in Korea and Thailand. I even rang in the new year in Hanoi, Vietnam a few years ago. I've been spending so much time thinking about Valentines day crafts that I forgot that the 2 holidays coincide. Last week K and I spent a lot of time on Valentines crafts & activities but this week we will work on Chinese New Year. I am excited about it and would like to give you a few ideas to do the same:

Activities to do with your toddler/ preschooler:

Ribbon Dancing
-Give your child a long piece of ribbon, put on some music and practice dancing
-You'll probably have to show them how to move the ribbon up & down & around

Red clothing game
-select red clothing to wear
-play an "Eye spy" game in search of red objects
-Go for a "red walk"

New Years Animals
-Print out the 12 animals of the chinese zodiak from DLTK
-Cut them out and put them all in a container
-Let your child pick an animal from the container and practice making the animal sounds and saying their names
-Why not hide the animals around your house and go on an animal hunt as well

Matching Memory Game
-Print out 2 copies of the animals of the chinese Zodiak from DLTK
-Place them right side down
-Take turns trying to make a pair

Lucky Money Game
-Have your child paint 5 envelopes red
-Label the envelopes 1-5
-Cut out 15 yellow circles for coins
-Take turns filling the numbered envelopes with the appropriate number of coins 

Songs to sing with your toddler 
(Taken from Preschool Express)

Gung Hay Fat Choy
(Tune:  “Happy Birthday”)
Happy Gung Hay Fat Choy.
Happy Gung Hay Fat Choy
Happy New Year, everyone!
Happy Gung Hay Fat Choy.
      -Jean Warren

Lantern Parade
(Tune:  “When Johnny Come Marching Home Again”)
The children are marching into town, hooray! hooray!
They all have lanterns as they come our way.
Some are big with lots of light.
Some are small but just as bright.
Oh, we’re oh so glad the children could come today.
The children are marching into town, hooray! hooray!
To celebrate the New Year and it’s brighter days.
Spring has come, with all that’s new.
The old year’s gone and bad luck, too.
Oh, we’re oh so glad the children could come today.
     -Jean Warren

Dragon, Dragon

(Tune:  “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”)

Dragon, dragon, dance around.
Dragon, dragon, touch the ground.
Dragon, dragon, shake your head.
Dragon, dragon, tongue so red.
Dragon, dragon, stamp your feet.
Dragon, dragon, coming down the street!
    -Heather McPhail

Hope this gives you a few ideas to get started. Make sure to check back here over the next few days for crafts and recipes for Chinese New Year as well.

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