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Chinese classes create lanterns, inform students about Lunar New Year

Newton North’s Chinese classes display paper lanterns with riddles attached to them on Main Street and in the Cafeteria to celebrate Chinese New Year.

(Photo by Joelle Sugianto)

Chinese language students and teachers aimed to inform students about Chinese and Asian culture by setting out traditional Chinese lanterns with riddles at lunch tables on Wednesday in celebration of the Lunar New Year on Feb. 16.
Chinese teacher Ming Lu said that he wanted to spread awareness of China’s growing economy and importance in the world as well as show people the different traditions in Asia as the Lunar New Year approaches.  
“There are 15 days to celebrate Lunar New Year,” Lu explained.  “On the fifteenth day we have lanterns set up so people can get together and hang out and guess riddles,” he added.
Ten Chinese classes helped to create the lanterns and riddles that Lu said he hopes will encourage kids to join the Chinese class.
“It was very traditional and lit up the spirit of the school,” sophomore Johnny Poon, a Chinese language student who worked on the lanterns said, “It gave color to the room.”  
Although learning a new language can be daunting, Lu said he believes Chinese is a much simpler language to learn than English and he encourages students to take a chance. “Chinese grammar is very easy and there are not that many characters like English,” Lu said. “At the beginning it is hard but soon you understand it.”
Students during lunch spent the time filling out the riddles and guessing the answers with their friends. “It was a mix of team building and educating us,” freshman Olivia Prince said, “I had fun guessing the riddles and it was good to mix up lunch a little.”  
Lu explained that he hopes students will make an effort to learn about Asian culture. “We want people to join the class and learn about it, but this was also to just celebrate the new year.”

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