We celebrate three festivals with much aplomb every year – Chinese New Year, Diwali and Christmas! The first two are to honor our individual race. The third (Christmas) is because of the fun and festive feel of it.
As an inter-racial family, my hubby and I want the children to have these festivities as part of their upbringing and to be able to feel a connection to their roots via these festivities. I try to use these festivals to my advantage by reinforcing their Chinese language and getting them to pitch in with DIY decorations! Of course, as they aged they wise up to mom’s antics and especially for my son, DIY activities are not as appealing.
If you are up to it, here are some very easy, no-fuss DIY decorations to try. All you need are lots of angpow (red packets).
1. DIY Streamers
Connect the ends of one angpow and staple it. The place another angpow through the hole and again staple the two ends. Keep repeating until you have a length you are satisfied with. Then hang them up in the hall or the kids’ room to give it a festive feel. This exercise is so easy that your 4-year old can attempt independently and with ease. Perfect to teach ownership of a task while enhancing their focus and concentration skills. Quick tip: alternate the colors or angpow packets to give it variety.
2. CNY Greetings In Chinese
Ok, so I am being a bit sneaky about getting the kids to memorize the Chinese greetings AND learning to write them as well. This is a great exercise if you have a child whose primary learning style is kinesthetic. Every child has a different way of presenting it. My son could visualize the formation of the words and put it up without laying out. Unlike her brother, my daughter likes to lay it out on the floor, then move them up to the wall.
I think the kids have as much fun decorating our family home as collecting ang pows on two separate occasions.
Hop on over to our Festive Celebrations: DIY Ideas for Diwali Rangoli to see how we decorate our home on this occasion.