7 Key Chinese New Year Etiquette For Kids

7 Key Chinese New Year Etiquette For Kids

By ILK Post

   February 1, 2021

During Chinese New Year, parents will bring along children for New Year’s Eve feast and visit elders and families to celebrate joyfully together. Chinese New Year is a traditional festival that Chinese attaches great importance to and there are a lot of etiquettes and taboos that children do not understand. Furthermore, children will meet relatives and family friends that they don’t see often, so it is normal for them to appear extra shy and embarrassed. Parents can prepare and practice beforehand with their children to avoid any etiquette issues! So, ILK Learning prepares 7 key Chinese New Year etiquette for children to make them more sociable!

  1. Greet Host When you visit others, “Greeting the host” is the most basic etiquette to show respect to the host. Before arriving at the house, parents should remind the children to take the initiative to greet the host and all relatives before heading off to play with other children. Before meeting elders and relatives who they have not seen for a while, parents should introduce them to children beforehand to make them feel less anxious. Parents can show them photos of their relatives and remind them of their names. If children really don’t remember their names during gatherings, parents should immediately introduce them to avoid embarrassing children.
  2. Active Self-Introduction Chinese New Year visit is a great chance to train children’s social etiquette. Elders all like well-behaved children, parents can teach their children to take initiative to introduce themselves to the elders, so they can leave an awesome impression on elders, relatives and friends. However, parents must remember to explain the reason behind and rehearse for a few times to prevent children from staying silent. Parents can explain to their children, “Grandma and all the relatives feel happy that they can see you, they want to know how you are doing lately, remember to introduce yourself later when you see them!”. Parents can rehearse with their children at home, and teach them to briefly introduce their name, age, school grade and interests. Children might feel nervous facing a lot of people, parents can encourage them on the side to boost their self-confidence.
  3. Happily Say New Year’s Greetings When it comes to Chinese New Year, a lot of children’s first impression is getting a red envelope after greetings. But the true meaning behind getting red envelopes is receiving genuine blessings. Children might not understand why they need to meet their relatives during the holiday. Parents should explain to children the meaning of Chinese New Year, so that children treat this festival with joy and respect. In addition, parents should teach children new year greetings so that they know what they can say. For example saying “Happy New Year Of Tiger”, “May Everything Goes Well” to relatives, “All My Best Wishes For Your Perfect Health” to elders, and “May Your Academic Progress Goes Well” to cousins!
  4. Politely Receive Red Envelope during Chinese New Year Children are still young and their impression of the red envelope might only be “money”. Parents should instill the right attitude of the red envelope, explaining that it is a sincere blessing from the elders, so that the meaning does not depend on the amount of money, but a pure blessing on a great year to the receiver. Parents can prepare red envelopes with their children at home, and share interesting Chinese New Year experiences from the past to enhance the festivity at home. Parents can rehearse the red envelope receiving process with children at home, reminding them that they should receive the red envelope using both hands and thank the giver immediately with New Year’s greeting. Then, let parents keep the red envelopes first and open them on 15th of the first lunar month.
  5. Basic Table Manners especially during Chinese New Year Parents need to let children know that eating with elders and relatives is different from eating at home. Parents should teach children how to show respect through table manners, for example letting elders sit down first. After everyone settles down, wait for the elders or the host to start first and say “Let’s start having dinner!” before starting your meal. During meals, refrain from digging through dishes using your chopsticks, and to not only have the food you like, but also leave some for everyone. If you can’t reach your food, politely ask someone for help, instead of travelling across the table with your chopstick. If you finish your meal first, you should inform others before leaving your seat. Recommended Blog: 3 reasons why your children keep losing temper
  6. Sparingly Eat Snacks Chinese New Year candy box has a great variety of snacks, like nuts and candies, so most children love the candy box very much. Parents should remind children that when the host offers the candy box, children should politely thank the host and have some snacks. Children should not dig through the candy box, and should eat too much to prevent feeling upset.
  7. Bring Your Own Toys during Chinese New Year During visits, parents will catch up with other relatives and elders, but there might not be other children of similar age to play together. To prevent children from getting fussy, parents should prepare their toys, books or other objects for them to play with during spare time. If there are other children, parents should remind their children to first politely ask for permission, then play their toys together. Recommended Blog : Tips to prevent your child from having a gaming addiction problem


Chinese New Year is a traditional festival that places immense emphasis on etiquette and traditional practices. For parents, these etiquettes are all well-remembered, so Chinese New Year is only a happy time for reunion. However, children still do not understand these etiquettes and have very little social occasions. So these gatherings might make them feel nervous. If they don’t practice beforehand, they might be caught off guard by the elders’ questions and all the etiquettes they have to follow. Parents should instill the correct concept of Chinese New Year etiquette, wear suitable clothing, prepare New Year’s food, rehearse New Year’s greetings to minimize children’s nervousness. Do you want your kids to acquire different skills and knowledge even at home? Check out ILK Learning’s Course Catalog to find THE course for your kids! Feel free to reach out for more information on WhatsApp, Facebook and Instagram! We look forward to seeing your messages!

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