Celebrate Chinese New Year with this Chinese New Year Activity Bundle and learn about this important Chinese celebration.

Chinese New Year Activity Bundle.

Today, I’m excited to share this free Chinese New Year Activity Bundle. I hope this bundle is a fun way to learn about Chinese culture and gets the whole family involved in learning about the Chinese New Year. So let’s learn about Chinese New Year!

Introduction to Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year, also known as Lunar New Year or Spring Festival, has a history stretching back over 3,500 years, making it one of the world’s oldest holidays. It’s exact origin is debated, but it is believed to have originated during the Shang Dynasty in China to celebrate the new year and new beginnings based on the lunar-solar calendar.

The dates of Chinese New Year celebrations change every year but always fall between January 21st and February 20th. In 2024, the Chinese New Year begins on February 10th and lasts for 16 days until February 26th. This holiday is filled with deep-rooted traditions and customs.

Some of the most common practices include:

  • Giving red envelopes filled with money to children and unmarried adults
  • Having elaborate family feasts with symbolic foods
  • Doing a thorough house cleaning to sweep away any ill-fortune
  • Hanging red lanterns and decorations
  • Setting off firecrackers and fireworks
  • Performing dragon and lion dances in costumes

Chinese New Year is considered the most important holiday in Chinese culture. It’s a time for families to gather, celebrate, and welcome the opportunities of a new year.

The Story of the Chinese Zodiac

Chinese Zodiac Animals

The Chinese zodiac’s 12 animal signs originated from a legend about the Jade Emperor calling on animals to be his guards. The order arrival would determine the zodiac order of the 12 animals.

There are many stories on how each animal received their zodiac ranking, so you may read something different. According to one version of the myth, as told on the China Highlights website, the rat ranks first because he was an early riser and hitched a ride on the ox’s ear to get to the palace. When the ox was near the Jade Emperor, the rat jumped off the ox’s ear and was the first to reach the emperor. Thus the rat is ranked first and the ox is second. The order of all the animals is as follows: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig

In Chinese astrology, each zodiac year is associated with certain personality traits. 2024 is the Year of the Dragon. Those born under this sign a said to be charismatic, confident, and intelligent. They tend to be naturally gifted and lucky.

Traditions and Customs

Chinese Lion Dance

Chinese New Year is filled with meaningful traditions and customs that bring families together and usher in luck and prosperity for the year ahead.

Red envelopes, known as hongbao, containing money are given to children by elders. The red color symbolizes good fortune and wards against evil spirits. New clothes are worn on New Year’s Day to signify a fresh new start. Families also thoroughly clean their homes in the days leading up to the new year to sweep away ill fortune. This tradition is called “sweeping of the grounds.”

Large extended family gatherings with feasts are a central part of the celebrations. Dumplings, fish, chicken and pork dishes are common fare. These meals reflect togetherness and close family ties.

Lion dances are performed in front of homes and businesses to ward off evil spirits and summon good luck. The dances incorporate noisy drumming and symbolic coordinated moves. Firecrackers and fireworks are set off for a similar purpose of scaring away bad luck to make way for the new year’s fortune.


Chinese New Year Decorations

Homes are decorated with red paper cutouts, lanterns, and Chinese knots. Common lucky symbols and the Chinese character ‘Fu’, meaning blessing or fortune, can be found on many decorations along with images of the zodiac animal from that year.

Food and Cooking

Chinese New Year Food

Food plays a central role in Chinese New Year celebrations. Families gather together on New Year’s Eve for a big reunion feast. Traditional foods like various dumplings, fish, spring rolls, steamed buns (baozi), and rice cakes are cooked because of their symbolic meanings of good luck, prosperity, and health for the coming year.

Chinese New Year Activity Bundle

Now that we’ve learned the basics of Chinese New Year, download this FREE Chinese New Year Activity Bundle (zip file) to celebrate. Note: These printables are for personal use and should not be copied or sold. I also have a dropbox zip file you can use too >> Chinese New Year Activity Bundle in Dropbox.

Chinese New Year Activity Bundle.

Click on the image to download the zip file. The Chinese New Year Activity Bundle file includes 8 pages: a Chinese New Year I Spy, Word Search, Picture Crossword, Maze, Shape Tracing, Coloring Pages, and a Dragon mask cut-out.

Enjoy this printable and have a wonderful Chinese New Year!

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