Vietnam shares the same Lunar calendar as China, which usually celebrates New Year after January 1st. Last week, our primary class celebrated the Lunar New Year, or Tet New Year in Vietnam with the help of the Kayden’s and Kayla’s parents. New Year is actually the most important holiday in Vietnam and the Nguyens were very happy to be able to celebrate it with the class.
Nhat Khai spoke of Vietnam first: its location and people. She explained the Lunar calendar and how each year is represented by an animal zodiac sign. There are 12 animal zodiac signs and 2015 is the Year of the Goat or the Sheep. Some children soon started asking the animals that represent the year of when they were born.
She showed lots of pictures of the fruits and flowers each family must have during the celebrations, the traditional dragon dance and the fireworks! Kayden and Kayla even wore the traditional Vietnamese clothes they wear during special occasions and their mom brought Mut, a mix of candied fruits and seeds (coconut, pineapple, mango, pineapple, pumpkin and watermelon) kept in beautiful boxes and placed in the living room to welcome guests who visit during this special occasion. The children enjoyed the candied fruits very much and kept asking for more. At the end of the presentation, we took lots of pictures and they gave each child a red envelope containing $1, which is a gift the elders give to the children on Tet. It was fun having the Nguyens in our class to share about their culture on this important time of the year!
Happy New Year! Or in Vietnamese, Chúc mừng năm mới!