Chinese New Year is a time of coming together, being with your family and celebrating togetherness in the past and the future. This helps keep traditions alive, families together and pulls children back to the ancestral homes from all around China and the world. It has been described as the largest migration of humanity in the world and the purpose is to bring our loved ones together.
Students make connections with relatives who have different backgrounds, they get to share what they have learnt and found the happiness and support that creates a feeling of safety that carries on into their school. Students also connect with their personal culture, languages and love that makes one want to succeed in school and life.
We are a bilingual school that celebrates what it means to be Chinese and it gives teachers a common topic that can cross curriculum. English, Science, Chinese and Maths can all find themes that bring together the experiences of this beautiful celebration and it connects the academic ideas and practices to their everyday life. We encourage our students to share what they have learnt and experienced with their family and learn from them as well. It is important for our community of teachers and parents to be a team celebrating our children’s learning and establish a strong moral and cultural identity that will ensure success far into the future.
When I first came to China many years ago, during the Chinese New Year celebration we had more fireworks than I had seen in my entire life. We ate dumplings and some of them had coins, getting the coins was considered extremely lucky. My friend’s family treated me as their own, sharing their home, meals and traditions throughout the festival. Now as a Chinese son-in-law, I am welcomed by my Chinese family with open arms every year. There are feasts and celebrations going on everywhere. Red packets are being given to children and adults alike, these packets are full of money and the spirit of giving is similar to our gift giving around Christmas. For me I find great happiness and a sense of belonging in the traditions, celebrations, and especially the sharing of love that connects the past with our present. Given how everyone puts forth so much effort in getting the extended families together tells me the close relationships will go on well into our promising future.
——By Mr. Jeffrey Reed
Deputy Head of Bilingual School
Head of Science International School