Chinese New Year . . . Prompt #767

Chinese New Year

2024 Year of the Dragon

According to legend, Chinese New Year started with a mythical beast called the Nian (a beast that lives under the sea or in the mountains) during the annual Spring Festival.

One year, the villagers decided to hide from the beast.

An older man appeared before the villagers and said that he would stay the night and get revenge on the Nian.

The old man put red papers up and set off firecrackers.

The next day, the villagers returned and saw that nothing had been destroyed.

They assumed that the old man was a deity who came to save them.

The villagers learned that the old man discovered that the Nian was afraid of the color red and loud noises.

The tradition grew as New Year approached.

The villagers wore red clothes, hung red lanterns and red scrolls on windows and doors.

They used firecrackers and drums to frighten away the Nian.

From then on, Nian never came to the village again.

Look at the chart below. Find your birth year. Discover your Chinese animal.

The writing prompt is after the list of animals.

Chinese New Year animals

Rat            1948, 1960, 1972, 1984

Ox             1949, 1961, 1973, 1985

Tiger         1950, 1962, 1974, 1986

Rabbit      1951, 1963, 1975, 1987

Dragon     1952, 1964, 1976

Snake        1953, 1965, 1977

Horse        1954, 1966, 1978

Sheep/goat  1955, 1967, 1979

Monkey    1956, 1968, 1980

Rooster     1957, 1969, 1981

Dog           1958, 1970, 1982

Boar/Pig   1947, 1959, 1971

Prompt 1:

Write something that intrigued you with the Nian legend.

Or: Write about a new year, a new beginning.

Write about what scares you. Then, write about what calms you.

Thinking about your Chinese animal . . .

Does that animal’s behavior and characteristics match how you go through life?


If not, how are you different?

How do you go through life?

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