About the Lunar New Year
The Lunar Calendar
The Lunar New Year 4720 will be celebrated on 1 February 2022, the first day after the new (dark) moon. It celebrates Xin Nian, the Chinese New Year, Solnal, the Korean New Year, Tết, the Vietnamese New Year and also Losar, the New Year celebrations for Tibet, Nepal and Bhutan. Traditionally Shōgatsu, the Japanese New Year was also celebrated on this date but since 1873, the official Japanese New Year has been celebrated according to the Gregorian calendar, on January 1 of each year. In most of these nations the Gregorian calendar is used for civil purposes but the lunar calendar is used to determine festivals and auspicious dates such as weddings and moving house.
This lunar new year is based on the traditional Chinese Agricultural Calendar which is lunisolar, primarily lunar but partially solar, guided by the movement of the moon as well as the sun. It is commonly called the lunar calendar.
The Chinese lunar calendar is associated with the Chinese zodiac, which has 12 animal signs: rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog, and pig. Each animal represents a year in a 12 year cycle, beginning on Lunar New Year's Day. There are many legends concerning the choice and order of the animals and their characteristics which are said to be imparted to people born in their year.
Year of the Tiger and the Tasmanian Tiger
2022 is the Year of the Tiger.
The Australian Chinese Zodiac was developed to promote understanding between Chinese and Australian cultures by the Chinese Precinct Chamber of Commerce in Australia. Animals from the traditional zodiac have been matched to native animals according to their perceived similar characteristics. This year the Tiger is matched to the Tasmanian Tiger.
The tiger is noted for its sensitive and deep thinking personality. It is also capable of great empathy.
Tasmanian Tiger 塔斯 曼尼亚虎
The Tasmanian tiger, a dearly missed mammal, was thought to be cunning, highly intelligent and quite empathetic.
How schools can be involved
- Explore the history of the Chinese on the goldfields via Sydney Living Museums.
- Use the Harvest of Endurance scroll at Making Multicultural Australia to create a short story about one of the characters in Chinese-Australian history.
- Research the establishment of the Vietnamese communities in Australia via the National Museum of Australia.
- Research well-known people born in a Year of the Tiger.
- Map the countries where lunar New Year is traditionally celebrated.