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Early years and Y1 pupils celebrate Chinese New Year

Published on 02/02/17

As Chinese New Year approached, children in the Early Years learned all about the Great Wall of China, Chinese cuisine, the Mandarin language and more.

After learning about the Great Wall of China, children built their own walls using blocks and construction bricks. They also learnt about how Chinese families celebrate their new year.

Reception also took a trip over to the city Pre-Prep with their Madingley and City friends to celebrate the festival and in Kindergarten, children helped to set up and decorate their own Chinese restaurants in their role play area with lanterns, chopsticks and delicious Chinese food.

The focus on China has led to making lanterns and dragons and having our very own New Year Parade. Kindergarten have linked the Great Wall of China to Humpty Dumpty's wall and have built walls for Humpty Dumpty to balance on both indoors and at Forest School, while Reception reenacted the role of a bricklayer using real bricks, wet sand, cement and real bricklayers' tools.

We really enjoyed our session with Qingqing our Mandarin teacher, and recited numbers to 10 in Mandarin, as well as learning how to say hello, goodbye and Happy New Year.

Year 1 children also learnt all about the Great Wall of China, and China itself.

As well as our exciting launch day at the start of the term, where children were immersed in activities relating to Chinese culture and walls , we also had a visit from Qingqing and she taught the children to write using Chinese characters, told traditional Chinese stories, taught some basic Mandarin and made Chinese dragon crafts with them.

The children have been listening to stories from China and using them as inspiration for artwork and for their own story writing. They have been comparing and contrasting their own lives and localities with those of Chinese children.

Using a range of information sources, the children have used different iPad apps to present what they have found out about China. For Chinese New Year, the children will be using digital resources to retell the legend associated with this celebration.

The children made up their own dragon and lion dances and enjoyed 'loose parts play' activities this term where they will be working in teams on a weekly challenge linked to our topic.

Over the last couple of weeks the children have been building their own dragon sculptures and walls and constructing bridges and mazes. This links to our science work this term on forces and materials.