Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Chinese New Year Must-Know Lucky Phrases

Happy Chinese New Year! Happy Year of the Dragon!

The most important thing during the Chinese New Year is to keep a positive spirit and to say the traditional Chinese lucky phrases when greeting family and friends. Here are the TOP three lucky phrases you will hear during Chinese New Year. Now you can try them out yourself and see the magic reaction you get! Watch the video and say them with Miss Panda's little cubs!

1. Gōng xǐ - Congratulations!
Most of the time, you will hear people say this phrase twice in a row as
"Gōng xǐ, gōng xǐ!"

2. Xīn nián kuài lè - Happy New Year.
Xīn = new
nián = year
kuài lè = happy

3. Wàn shì rú yì - May everything go as you wish.
Wàn = ten thousand
shì = things
rú yì = as you wish

Miss Panda's little cubs helped out with this video - I hope you enjoy it!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Chinese Character Fun: Dragon = 龍 = "Lóng"!

Writing Chinese characters is a lot of fun! The rule of thumb when writing Chinese characters is to start writing the strokes from top to bottom and from left to right. The most important thing to remember is to follow the stroke order so the character comes out looking right. Follow me and you will see what I mean!

Today we will learn how to say and write the Chinese character for the word "dragon" in order to to get ready for the upcoming Chinese "Year of the Dragon!"

Click below to hear how to properly pronounce this Chinese word:

Check this out on Chirbit

And click below to see how to write it with the proper stroke order:


*Click to generate your own vocabulary.

Special Thanks to Chinese Digger & Kleanthes Koniaris

Thursday, January 5, 2012

2012 Year of the DRAGON - Chinese New Year Calendar of Events in U.S., Canada, Australia

The best way to learn is to see, to hear, to feel, to touch, and to taste. This definitely applies to learning a language and its culture.

Do you know I still remember my very first bite of the authentic McDonald's Big Mac in L.A. when I visited the U.S. the very first time many many years ago? It might sound silly but it was quite an experience after hearing about the Big Mac and looking at the pictures of a Big Mac for a while in Taiwan. Food always motivates me and you know the rest of the story I tried all kinds of fast food restaurants and learned many names and words about hamburgers, fried chicken, and seafood. That was very yummy and fun.

My cousin came to the States for a visit from China and took a summer English program in a college a few year ago. He had his first real American hamburger one day and he was thrilled as well. He learned how to order everything on his own in English on his field trip.

When we visit Taiwan, my children would go to the convenience stores to buy snacks and chat with the staff about the snacks they have never seen before in Mandarin Chinese. They also go to the tea house to order their favorite bubble tea on their own. Power of language is so delicious!

Here is a great opportunity for the whole family to enjoy and to explore the Chinese language and Chinese culture during the Chinese New Year celebration this year. The list is arranged by location and each entry is linked to its official event website. Find one event near you. Go out and have some fun! Why not try out the Chinese words, phrases, sentences you know? And make sure you taste some traditional Chinese New Year food.

If you would like to add event location(s) to the CALENDAR OF EVENTS list I put together please feel free to do so in the comment area.

Happy New Year of the Dragon! - lóng nían kuài lè - 龍年快樂! - 龙年快乐!

2012 Year of the DRAGON - Chinese New Year Calendar of Events
in U.S., Canada, Australia



San Francisco - Chinatown

San Francisco - Chinese New Year Flower Market Fair

San Francisco - Chinese New Year events

San Diego

Los Angeles, California - The Golden Dragon Parade

Los Angeles, California - Asian American Expo Celebrating the Lunar New Year Festivities

Monterey Park, California - Chinese New Year Festival

San Marino, Califonia


Honolulu Chinatown Chinese New Year Festivities


Rockville, Maryland-2012 Lunar New Year Celebration


Massachusetts - Quincy Asian Resources Annual Lunar New Year Festival

New York

New York

Flushing, New York


Austin, Texas - Chinatown Center Year of the Dragon Celebration

Houston, Texas - Lunar New Year Houston


Falls Church - Chinese New Year Festival

Washington DC

Washington DC area


Brisbane - Chinese New Year @ Sunnybank

Sydney - Chinese New Year Festival

Chinese New Year in Australia - Resource website


Vancouver, Canada - Chinese New Year Parade and Festival

Picture source: huan tian xi di by zheng xiang

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Reading Time: Chinese New Year

Let's get ready for the Chinese New Year! This year is the year of the DRAGON and the Chinese New Year is on January 23rd. Dragon year only comes once every twelve years so it is very special. Dragon means power, wealth, and good fortune for Chinese. Do you know the ancient Chinese emperors wore lóng páo 龍袍, Dragon robe?

Chinese New Year is my favorite Chinese celebration and there are many interesting traditions about it. Do you know the Chinese families start preparing for the arrival of Chinese New Year on the 23rd day of December on the lunar calendar? The traditional celebration goes from the 1st day of the New Year to the 15th day. The Lantern Festival marks the completion of the Chinese New Year celebration.

Let's have fun reading about the Chinese New Year and get ready for the year of the Dragon!

This is Miss Panda's monthly book selection and each image of the book is linked directly to Amazon. I am able to find most of the books listed here in the library as well.

Bring In the New Year
by Grace Lin

Happy Chinese New Year, Kai-lan!
Simon Spotlight

Happy New Year! / Kung-Hsi Fa-Ts'ai!

The Dancing Dragon
by Marcia K. Vaughan

Moonbeams, Dumplings & Dragon Boats: A Treasury of Chinese Holiday Tales, Activities & Recipes