The King’s Academy community celebrated the Chinese and Korean New Year, also known as the Lunar New Year, last weekend. An important holiday celebrated by more than 20 percent of the world, the Lunar New Year marks the end of the coldest days of the year and welcomes spring, new beginnings and fresh starts.
As an international boarding school with a diverse student body, King’s celebrates a number of different cultures and traditions throughout the year. Currently home to 53 students from Asian countries, including China, Korea, Japan and Indonesia, King’s annual Lunar New Year celebrations are eagerly awaited by the whole community.
This year, students and faculty got into the new year spirit by decorating the Hess Family Dining Hall with traditional red Chinese lanterns before gathering to watch a screening of a Chinese New Year’s Eve show. Students spent hours creating over 200 hóng bāo, small red envelopes traditionally filled with lucky money, while Duanduan Lin ’20 led a workshop to teach students the art of Chinese calligraphy.
Sharing meals is an important part of the holiday, and the community enjoyed getting together to make dumplings and other Asian dishes, as well as local and international dishes that were served at the school’s international potluck dinner on Friday. At the dinner, students impressed with beautiful performances of a traditional Chinese folkdance and contemporary Kpop dance. Chinese language students also performed a Chinese song that they learned in class. Some additional light fun was had with a chopsticks competition and the lighting of red sky lanterns that students had written their wishes on for the new year, before releasing them into the sky.
“I very much enjoyed how much of our celebration this year was student driven,” said faculty member Ryuji Yamaguchi. “Chinese and Korean students rehearsed dances and various other activities that everyone was welcome to join. Other students wholeheartedly embraced the celebration and joined in to cook meals, learn calligraphy and make our Chinese and Korean students feel at home. I think it was a wonderful exercise of empathy on all sides!”
- Chinese New Year
- Korean New Year