Lunar New Activities for the Music Room

Red lanterns, with the text "Lunar New Year Activities for the Music Room"

Are you looking for activities for Lunar New Year? In this blog post, I'm detailing five activities which could work well when celebrating Lunar New Year in the music room!

Note: Although I've done research for this blog post, I am not a culture bearer. See this helpful article for information about Lunar New Year, written by a culture bearer.

First, let's discuss the difference between Chinese New Year and Lunar New Year. Lunar New Year typically has the same dates as Chinese New Year, but is celebrated in other Asian countries, like Vietnam and Korea. In Vietnam, the Lunar New Year is called “Tet.” In China, Lunar New Year and Chinese New Year both refer to the same holiday. In China , their holiday lasts for 7 days, but in other countries, like Korea and Singapore, it is 3 days. For more information about the difference between the two, see this article. For information about specific customs for each country's Lunar New Year, check out this article.

By using the term “Lunar New Year,” we can be more inclusive. In 2022, Lunar New Year will be celebrated starting on February 1. Here are five activities that could work well when celebrating Lunar New Year in the music room:

Dragon Dancing

This is a wonderful book for celebrating Lunar New Year, and also for vocal exploration! For each page in which there is a ribbon or dragon, students could follow the path to explore their voices.

Lunar New Year Rhythm Reading

This is a fun video for having students read rhythm patterns with ta, ti-ti, tika-tika, rest, and half note!

Check out this video for an easier version, with ta, ti-ti, and rest.

Scarf activity

This video would be a great way to get students moving with scarves, and responding to a piece of music!

Gong Xi

This is a Chinese New Year song; the chorus speaks of wishing good wishes to others.

Bringing in the New Year

This is a wonderful book to give Lunar New Year some cultural context. The book is about a Chinese American family, and details Lunar New Year traditions through a story. Near the end of the book, students play instruments, so you could discuss which instruments they see (and maybe have your students do a dragon dance of their own!) Click this link to see the book on Amazon; it is an affiliate link.

If you are looking for more Lunar New Year activities, check out this set, which I co-authored with my friend Chiung-Lien Liu. I've updated the set so it is more inclusive; it now includes a bulletin board detailing Lunar New Year customs from several countries, and has more universal language about Lunar New Year. If you've already purchased, click “my purchases” on TpT to re-download the revised set.

I hope this is helpful, as you consider what to plan for Lunar New Year. Happy teaching!

One Response

  1. Thanks so much! Love the playa-longs!
    Appreciate your posts and the time you devote to helping music teachers 🙂

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