Happy Chinese New Year! The year of the Dragon

January 24th, 2012

by Katrina Brooke

Mei Li: A Vintage Chinese New Year Story

Burgin Streetman January 23, 2012

Hurray for January, the month of New Years! According to this book’s jacket, the author and etcher, Thomas Handforth, visited the Far East on a Guggenheim Fellowship and published Mei Li in 1938 based on his experiences. The Caldecott Medal-winning story follows a young girl on the eve of the Chinese New Year as she ventures out to the streets of Peiping to enjoy all the mysteries the holiday has to offer. The black and white etchings are divine, and the story has a great flow to it, each sentence giving a nod back to the one that preceded it.

In North China, near the Great Wall, is a city shut in by the Wall. Not far from the city in the snow-covered country is a house with a wall around it, too. Inside the house on the morning before New Year’s Day, everyone was busy. Mei Li, the little girl with a candle-top pigtail, was scrubbing and sweeping and dusting. Her mother, Mrs. Wang, was baking and frying and chopping. Her brother, San Yu, was fixing and tasting and mixing. A fine feast prepared for the Kitchen God, who would come at midnight to every family in China to tell them what they must do during the coming year.

Packed full of Chinese tradition, it’s wonderful to experience another culture from a child’s point of view. The girl herself is extremely charming, and wins your heart by how she deals with each adventure as it arises. Pictured here is “the good luck bell under the Bridge of Wealth”, and I’ve been racking my brain trying to figure out how to incorporate this tradition into an American holiday. So fun! As the Chinese New Year falls on February 3 this year, we might all break out our good luck bells and celebrate.


Comments Closed

About The Shyne School
 
facebook
Message Board
Coming Events
Download the Annual Calendar 2019 2020

*We follow the NSD calendar for breaks. We make accommodations for LWSD families.

**Parent/Teacher conferences Nov to Jan. screenings Complete

March 2020

17 & 18   Class Photo Day, RESCHEDULED for April 30 and May …

Read more
Important Information

We are planning to open for regular hours Thursday, January 16, 2020.  Due to possible changes overnight this will be updated by 6:15 AM. PLEASE DRESS THE CHILDREN TO PLAY OUTSIDE.❄⛄

We are happy to be engaging Tri Landscape &

Read more
Tour Our School

We are currently full and will only offer tours for classrooms with openings until Open Tours in  January & February 2020 when we begin enrollment for the following summer and fall.

Tours are offered Monday to Friday at 9:30 or …

Read more