Planning Lunar New Year

The Lunar Calendar

The Lunar New Year 4716 is on 16 February 2018 and celebrates the beginning of Xin Nian, the Chinese New Year or Spring Festival, Solnal, the Korean New Year, and Tết, the Vietnamese New Year. This date is based on the traditional Chinese Agricultural Calendar. The calendar is lunisolar (primarily lunar and partially solar) guided by the movement of the moon as well as the sun and 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 Dog and the Dingo

2018 is the Year of the Dog.

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 Dog is matched to the Dingo.

Dogs are considered to be the epitome of loyalty and companionship. They are also good at keeping secrets.


澳洲野狗 When Dingos are domesticated, they establish relationships and demonstrate loyalty to humans. They are also quite reserved.


How schools can be involved

  • Explore the history of the Chinese in Australia and some of the significant events which have contributed to the shaping of Australia as a nation.
  • Use the Harvest of Endurance scroll at Multicultural Australia to create a short story about one of the characters in Chinese-Australian history.
  • Research the establishment of the Vietnamese community in Australia.
  • Research well-known people born in a year of the dog.
  • Consider a Year of the Dog dance workshop with E G Incursions.
  • Map the countries where lunar New Year is traditionally celebrated.
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