DIY Red Envelope Lantern | 紅包燈籠 | Linterna de Sobre Rojo

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With the lantern festival coming up, you can turn your red envelopes into cute little lanterns!

You will need a red envelope, double sided tape (or glue), art knife, straight edge, a cutting mat, and pencil (optional).

Here’s a quick how-to video:

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BEST Children’s Illustrated Chinese-English Dictionaries

So I have been meaning to rave a little bit about these well-illustrated Chinese-English Dictionaries that we have. We are learning Traditional Chinese rather than Simplified and getting quality resources is not as easy to come by. So I love sharing about the good stuff I find and even making free Traditional Chinese with pinyin resources to share. Read on for a quick overview and where to buy.

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Our Disney World Experience (Covid-19 Edition)

So we did a thing and survived to tell the tale. I am so glad we went to Disney World and helped the kiddos make some magical memories while back in the US. Virtual schooling them on an intense schedule has not been easy. I’m very thankful we got to take a nice family vacation in the middle of it all. If you’re on the fence about whether to take the trip in these unusual times and whether it’s worth it, read on for an objective recounting of the real situation. If you’re planning your first trip to Disney World, read on and click on anything that can be clicked on to check out the best attractions, etc. This is not a sponsored post and all opinions are mine alone. 🙂

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Youdao Chinese-English Translator/Dictionary Pen 2.0

This post has some affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I earn a small commission when you click an affiliate link and make a purchase.

Here’s a first glance overview of the Youdao Chinese-English Translator/Dictionary Pen 2.0.

As heritage Chinese speakers, we are primarily using this Chinese-English translator/dictionary pen for its most basic function of reading Traditional Chinese text aloud and that is already a game changer us. It helps a decently-fluent but functionally illiterate Chinese-American mom like me do the near impossible of teaching my kids a little more Chinese than I thought would be possible. Actually now any English-speaking parent can let this pen do all the reading aloud and translating that Siri, Alexa, and Google never could get quite right. The Google Translate app with scanning function has long been my go to when trying to read Chinese characters that I’m not familiar with, but the process is not as efficient and quick as I would like. Imagine fumbling around with it while trying to read to a squirmy toddler. Tell me I’m not the only one!

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感恩節快樂 (gǎn’ēn jié kuàilè) Happy Thanksgiving!

Free Chinese “craftivity” printable alert! My kids and I had a lot of fun crafting our Thanksgiving Wreath and learning to recognize a few new Chinese characters. (I’ll take any progress on this front—even if it’s slow!) So much hands on learning can be done with crafting, but busy schedules leave us less time to enjoy it. These days I gravitate towards low prep, little clean up crafts and process art learning activities that can engage all of my kids in some way. My printables aim to provide a fundamental base for the language learning component and and inspirational springboard for the art component–so you can make these as elaborate or as simple as you’d like (or have time for). I find it difficult to find free Traditional Chinese learning resources, so I’m on a mission to create more to share. I’ll also post the Spanish and English versions soon, where you will see that we simply used our Thanksgiving icons page as a coloring sheet and that was GeGe’s Spanish Thanksgiving activity of the day.

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Garden-Themed Chinese Ten Frame Printable + Activities

Now that we are back stateside for the time being, the kids have enjoyed surprising me with the treasures they find outdoors. Little scavengers they are—I love it. They are usually pleasant surprises like leaves and flowers, with the occasional item that causes me to say, “umm that’s nice, but let’s put that back outside”. 

Today’s surprise was especially nice though—they found that the tomato vine in the back yard has yielded a lot of fruit! What?!!?? When was the last time we even watered back there? 

The little tomatoes were so cute that I was inspired to create a garden themed Chinese number recognition and counting activity for the 3 and 5 year olds.

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Mulan & Mooncakes Activity

Mulan & Mooncakes Activity

(*Before you scroll down any further, know that there’s a bit of a Disney Mulan 2020 spoiler alert below!*) There is a folk tale about the overthrow of Mongol rule where mooncakes were used by the Ming revolutionaries. Cool, right? Mulan’s legend takes place in another dynasty. But isn’t it more fun to do a meaningful mashup of our two true loves of the season: mooncakes AND Mulan?

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Top 7 Mandarin Audio Educational/Reality Netflix Series for Tweens (Netflix Rated TV-G/Y/PG)

These.shows.are.great! They are all so well produced and were thrilled to have found that they have Mandarin audio. We may or may not have already binged all of them.

#1 You vs. Wild (This one is INTERACTIVE! SO COOL.)

#2 Emily’s Wonder Lab (Highly engaging, your kids will be asking to do all the fun experiments.)

#3 The Who Was (Bizarrely addictive to watch.)

#4 Brain Child (Very interesting, but could do without some of the pre-teen social references. May want to pre-screen a couple of episodes, like Dreams and Motivation due to intensity level.)

#5 Izzy’s Koala World (Adorable.koalas.everywhere!!!! Need I say more?)

#6 J-Style Trip (Technically TV-14, but it’s pretty harmless)

#7 Flavorful Origins (Honestly a little bit boring, but the production value is top notch. Makes me want to eat the food so badly.)