Glenwood Mandarin Dual-Language Students Celebrate Mid-Autumn Festival
The Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival traditionally falls on the fifteenth day of the eighth month in the Chinese lunar calendar. This year’s Festival was celebrated on October 1, and the Mandarin Dual-Language students at Glenwood STEAM Magnet Elementary School engaged in many activities to learn more about the holiday. Ted Yang, the FLES teacher for DL students in grades K-5, designed the lessons, with an exciting and time-intensive pen pal exchange between Glenwood fifth grade students and students in Yaoshan Elementary School, in Shannxi Province, China.
The Mid-Autumn Festival is a time for families to gather and celebrate their hard work and the summer’s harvest, much like American Thanksgiving. People in China honor the holiday by sharing meals, lighting paper lanterns, eating mooncakes and admiring the full moon.
Yang set up the pen pal exchange with a school in his hometown, Yaoshan Elementary School. The fifth grade students from both schools exchanged their impressions and observations about the Mid-Autumn Festival. They created posters and made Mid-Autumn cards.
Yang said, “At the end of the activity, I aim for both fifth graders to gain a better understanding of how Chinese students celebrate the Mid-Autumn festival and to understand the differences between Mid-Autumn Festival and Thanksgiving Day."
"By exchanging impressions, opinions and personal experiences, students also understood that participating in the celebration of traditional festivals is a method to learn a new language, and it is also a place that enables us to gain cultural awareness and build social interactions with others,” Yang said.