Learning culture through celebrations

I have tried to teach my children through experiential learning. This is quite ironic since my hope for graduate school was to find a program that required only book learning, no hands-on.

Ha! God laughs at my best laid plans.

Although we cannot join the masses in a major China-town or Korea-town for Lunar New Year, we have developed our own Asian New Year celebration.

We decorated the house in dragons, paper crafts, and lanterns.



We all dressed in our finest Asian attire (we bought The Flash’s outfit when we were in Korea bringing him home at 7 months of age).


We invited guests over and all children at the party made Handprint Dragons.

Professor X played a “drum” and the children danced their creations around the house in a festive Dragon Parade.


We played “games”. Such as sweeping out all the bad luck.


And practicing fine motor skills with beginner chopsticks… The kids raced transferring the most fish from one bowl to another in 30 seconds time.


and of course we ate and ate.

We made lots and lots of dumplings (about 150 of them!) and “sushi” dessert.



Next time you want to learn about a culture… try celebrating.

A party fosters memories, knowledge, and lots of great pictures. πŸ˜‰

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  1. Can I come next time? Oh please oh please invite me! πŸ˜€ I can’t wait until the kids are just a wee little bit older. I want them each to pick a country a month for us to celebrate at dinner. I’ll make a dish from that country and we’ll learn and talk all about it. WOOHoo! Your party looks like a TON of fun!

  2. What FUN! Can I come too? I can’t wait until Daniel would care enough to do some of these activities! They look fantastic!!

  3. That looks so much fun! I think we need to try this…as far as we get to chinese is take-out (which we did last night!)
    This is a great idea!
    Off to catch up on your blog πŸ™‚

  4. You guys have so much fun! Really, where do you get your inspiration?

  5. Your party looked fantastic!! The food, the decorations, and the games…..all terrific!! Great pics too!


  6. That is such great advice. My oldest would love this as she is really into dragons and asian cultures. Both of my girls use chop sticks on a regular basis! πŸ™‚

  7. Wow! That is great! I am so impressed!

  8. You guys really know how to celebrate an occasion. I’ll bet the kids just loved it.

  9. That looks like so much fun. mmm…dessert sushi.

  10. Oh my goodness … look at the decorations, the food, the activities … you truly DO have super powers!!!!

  11. What fun! You are the coolest mom.

  12. I love the chopsticks game idea! And I’m sure the Tongginator would, too … especially because she’d probably win. I have no idea where she comes by her overly competitive spirit (cough, cough). I’ll have to show you pictures of our dragon costume. It is great!

  13. What a wonderful celebration! Love the dessert sushi. Gonna check out the recipe for it.

  14. I think this is a fabulous way to get kids excited about learning – I hope I’m as cool (and super) a mom as you are when mine are a bit older and can do things like this!

  15. Sweeping out the bad luck ey?!? I’ll have to remember that one πŸ˜‰

    You have the most funnest parties. Need a new neighbor?

  16. Wow! I wish we lived closer! You’re so clever. That looks like an awesome celebration πŸ™‚ What fun activities and games. I’m definitely peeking at the dumpling recipe πŸ™‚

    Happy New Year!

  17. Your blog is great i loved your Celebration the food looked so yummy and the party wow my kids would be jealous. I loved your photograph too.

  18. SO fun!!! :)Love the pictures!

  19. What a blast! Experiential learning . . . fine motor skills.

    Art. Culture . . . WOW. I am so impressed and in awe. I can’t wait to do this with J!

    All I can say is that my fine motor skills still need some work when it comes to mastering chopsticks.

    For now, I’ll all fork . . .

  20. This looks like the perfect way to learn – I wish I had this while I was growing up!

  21. AWESOME! That sounds and looks like so much fun! Those dragons are amazing and that sushi looks so yummy!

  22. What a great idea! I love how you make learning fun for your kids and students ~ you’re so creative. Looks like a wonderful time and a great learning experience!

  23. Oh the dumplings look delicious! And the papercraft looks fun.

  24. Those dragon hands are my favorite…very cool! And, I LOVE potstickers…so thanks for the recipe!

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