Students create a rebus using Chinese symbols, and in the manner of Chinese new year traditions, decorate a red envelope to send good fortune to another classmate.
Materials: Red envelopes, metallic pens, scissors, glue, pencils, pens, magazines; See "Related Resources" (below) for the following: Handout: Rebus Key; Video: The Dragon’s Pearl; Images/Artworks: Spherical jar with dragon chasing a pearl; Rug; A pair of rectangular blue flags depicting a dragon chasing a black pearl; and Chinese New Year Parade.
- Compare images: spherical jar with dragon chasing a pearl; Rug; A pair of rectangular blue flags depicting a dragon chasing a black pearl; and Chinese New Year Parade. Why do you think that showing a dragon chasing a pearl is such a common picture in art? Flags and banners with dragons were also common images that brought good luck.
- Watch the video: The Dragon’s Pearl. Now that you’ve heard the story, why do you think this was a common theme in art?
- Brainstorm symbols that send a good message, such as good job or good luck (evil eye, star, smiley face, crossing our fingers).
- Using the Rebus Key, introduce some of the good luck symbols and their meanings in Chinese art and find these different symbols in artwork (see "Related Resources/Artworks/More+" below).
- Create a rebus for a classmate using the Rebus Key and decorate a red envelope with metallic pens, drawings, art images, or pictures from magazines.
- Insert a gift (gold coin, chocolate, a little drawing, note, or play money).
- Exchange envelopes with a classmate with wishes for a prosperous new year.