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Happy New Year!

© 2013 Nickel City Studios

Chinese New Year, that is! I’ve been doing a lot of upcoming lesson planning, so sadly, photos went out the window this week as Murph was doing a lot of independent work while I researched. However, we took a break from our usual routine to do a mini unit study on China and Chinese New Year! One of our epic local homeschool moms planned a Chinese New Year party to start the week off. We got together at a local restaurant, and she had crafts (the black scratch lantern and horse craft, above) and treats for the kids, and we continued the study at home. There was a lot we did this week that didn’t get photographed, but some of the things we did were:

Chinese Inspired Art

Chinese Lantern

Paper Fan

Wood Scroll

Watercolor Landscape Scroll

Learned Our Names in Chinese

Learned Chinese Folktales

Made Magic Scratch Vases

Sticker Scenes

Country Study Worksheet

Brush Painting

Evan-Moor History Pockets Ancient China

Coloring Pages

Made Noodles

Made Pork Buns

 

Chinese Inspired Art

This was one of my favorite things we did this week, a potato print/watercolor based on this art.

© 2013 Nickel City Studios

 

Chinese Lantern

The Chinese paper lantern (see image at the top of the page) has instructions pretty much everywhere on the internet, as it’s a pretty common craft project when working on China with younger grades. But it’s super easy, fold a red piece of construction paper in half, lengthwise, cut in 1″ increments from the fold to 1″ below the top of the paper, unfold, wrap, tape, decorate!

 

Paper Fan

Another super easy project (see image at the top of the page) we didn’t photograph as it’s another pretty common one – take an 18″ piece of construction paper, draw a picture on the top third, flip it over and continue the artwork on the (now that you’ve flipped it) top third. Accordion fold, bend in half and tape.

 

Wood Scroll

We learned all about inventions and contributions from China, as well as a bit of calligraphy. Murph built a wooden scroll and tried his hands at the boys’ names (google). I notched each of the craft sticks with scissors so the string would have a place to hold and tied knots between each stick, and it’s held together pretty well through a decent amount of handling.

© 2013 Nickel City Studios

 

Watercolor Landscape Scroll

We used our fantastic watercolor crayons to do this lovely project from Art is Basic.

© 2013 Nickel City Studios

 

Learned Our Names in Chinese

I suppose this is a bit out of order, since Murph was signing his art at the top of the page with his name in Chinese, but a quick google search found a ton of English names written in Chinese. Even though Arlo, Dexter and Murph were all represented, I have no idea what the characters mean, so ideally, I’m not posting a blog of Murph writing something obscene all over his art:)But I printed out the names, and Murph practiced writing his (see image at the top of the page). He’s got whatever name he’s writing down pat (seriously, though, please don’t let it be something horribly offensive!).

 

Learned Chinese Folktales

At the beginning of the year, Scholastic does a 50 books for $50 deal, which is a fun grab box of books. We got this small book of three folktales from China (see image at the top of the page) in our box this year, so we read them and reviewed folktales and fairytales.

 

Made Magic Scratch Vases

This was another lesson borrowed from the internet from arte a scuola. This probably took the most time out of any of our projects this week (aside from our pork buns), as it took a really long time to solidly color our paper, but then we needed a good four or five coats of paint before the crayon was remotely hidden. But Murph was pretty stoked to discover we could create our own Magic Scratch paper.

© 2013 Nickel City Studios

 

Sticker Scenes

(see image at the top of the page) I got these off Oriental Trading – nothing terribly exciting or educational, but it was something the babies could participate in, as well.

 

Country Study Worksheet

(see image at the top of the page) I have a country study worksheet I created for independent research. Which is pretty handy for those moments when the babies can’t go without my attention any longer:)

 

Brush Painting

So, I’ve had this brush painting kit for a good seven years, and it was finally the time to bust it out! Murphy really took to it, and I thought pretty much killed this project!

© 2013 Nickel City Studios

© 2013 Nickel City Studios

 

Evan-Moor History Pockets Ancient China

The puppets, series of lanterns, postcard and folding dragon puppet (see image at the top of the page) all came from our Ancient China pocket. Not my favorite book, but I had it so we did it:)

 

Coloring Pages

(see image at the top of the page)

 

Made Noodles

We used this recipe to make our own noodles. They were kind of terrible (I’m pretty confident it was my error – it was our first attempt at noodles), but Murph loved them. I think mostly because he made them.

© 2013 Nickel City Studios

© 2013 Nickel City Studios

 

Made Pork Buns

Aaaand, I can’t find the recipe again anywhere, but these were amazing and are definitely going in our rotation. They were off the counter so fast there’s no photographic evidence they existed at all, but Murph made them and did fantastic.

 

Of course, we couldn’t let actual Chinese New Year go by without another mini-party, so we ate our noodles, shot off some poppers left over from non-Chinese New Year and watched Kung Fu Panda. And next year, we’re definitely getting our friends together and making a full-sized dragon costume!

© 2013 Nickel City Studios

miriam paternoster - Hi! Thanks for sharing my experience about the Ming vases on my web site! You are doing an amazing work! :)

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