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Happy Spring Festival! Where else can one experience the celebration of Chinese New Year with such extreme fun other than SWIS, which dresses itself in a merry mood with a reflecting and charming atmosphere? This years festive celebration was held at the SWIS campus on the 25th of the twelfth month based on the lunar calendar. Red lanterns, couplets, red decorations, Chinese Folk Music and traditional costumes celebrated, the most important traditional Chinese festival in China and around the world.
In the morning, artists told traditional stories from the Shenzhen Speech Artists Association (SZSAA). The stories pulled people into a dialogue. It's about engagement and interaction. Gathering from the audience's reaction, the traditional storytelling event was a huge success. This event allowed students to learn more about the Chinese festival and culture in anticipation for the upcoming Spring Festival. At the end of the Chinese storytelling event Mr. Gong wrote some traditional Chinese calligraphy, to wish everyone a Happy Year of the Pig.
In addition to the storytelling event, there were performances, a garden market and fun activities throughout SWIS. With great cooperation among parents, students and school faculty, performances attracted a large number of visitors. Expat and Chinese teachers presented Tai chi with a combined hardness, softness and a natural flow. It was in perfect harmony and marked the culmination of the celebration, which recalled the school motto, School-Family-Paradise.
Students were big fans of the festive market and fun activities such as clay figures, shadow puppets and puppet show, sugar-figure blowing, dragon dancing and walking on stilts which was prevalent among the younger children. Students were also introduced to famous mountains throughout China. By scanning the QR Code posted on posters throughout the campus, a factual brochure could be downloaded. I really enjoyed the celebration of the Year of the Pig, it was fun and I also learned something about the many beautiful mountains of China. My family also decided to go to Mount Tai this summer. I am a very excited and enthusiastic to take this trip.
Today, parents also prepared traditional Chinese food for the community. Speaking of which, Chinese New Years eve dinner is the most luxurious meal of the entire year within the Chinese culture. During the New Year Celebration, a vast amount of traditional food is prepared for families and friends as well as the family's ancestors, in honor of both past and present relatives. Dishes eaten during the New Year celebration symbolize good wishes, such as good luck, good fortune, and a long abundant life.
- Lotus - Signifies having a male offspring.
- Dried Oysters – Signifies good business.
- Dried Bean Curd – Signifies good wealth.
- Chinese Black Mushrooms – Signifies granted wishes.
- Bamboo Shoots - Is a term, which sounds like "wishing everything too be well".
- Lily Buds - Symbolize 100 years of blissful union.
- Ginkgo Nut - Represents silver ingots or in other words silver blocks or bars.
- Snow Peas- Brings prosperity.
- A Whole Duck or Chicken with head and feet, symbolize unity or wholeness.
- Fish - With the head and tail still intact, symbolize togetherness and abundance.
- Noodles - Should be uncut as they symbolize living a long life.
- Dumplings - Brings prosperity and luck into the New Year.
After a day of celebration, it's time to bring the curtain down. Hope the days ahead are filled with immense joy and prosperity. Hope the rising sun will bring with it bundles of joy, happiness and luck for all. Happy Year of the Pig! Oink Oink!
Ms. Eve Huang
PYP Chinese Team lead
SZSAA Traditional Storytelling Event @ SWIS Gallery
SWIS CNY Festive Concert and Market Gallery