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Having Chinese New Years being known to my kids is something I will start working hard on because in the last few years, we haven’t done enough or nearly as much as I had experienced growing up. Therefore, I have purchased books about Chinese New Years from stories to pop up books. In this review, I wanted to review four pop up / 3D books:
- 中国年, 中国传统节日 (简体)
- 過年啦! (繁體) purchase link : 過年啦!
- 欢乐中国年 (简体) there’s 繁體 version coming out in Jan. Stay tuned.
The four above are leveled from easy to hard. Technically 1&2 are the same level. The first one is probably the least exciting of the four books so really, I don’t really “need” it but the best part in there is when they made dumplings and it shows the steps on making dumplings. We do the same things at home so my girls love that and can relate. Please note that the first book is year specific. It has stuff for year of the Pig. It’s nice if you want to emphasize the year of the Pig. However, if you want to use it year after year, you may have to make your own stickers inside to replace the stickers that have the year of the Pig on there.
The second book is the book that everyone really pretty much goes for first and has. The one I showed is in traditional Chinese but it also comes in simplified. It’s probably the one that has the most activity to do for the child from opening doors, changing clothes, etc. Words are rather big and really covers everything from about 4 days leading up to New Years Day until the day New Years ends. The quality is super high on this book and definitely worth every penny. I would say kids 6 and under would enjoy this book.
The third book (recommended by Hands On Chinese Fun) is very similar to the second book but covers a bit more topics (like cleaning the house, doing rice cakes, how to make tofu, etc.) than the first book (only slightly). I really like the quality of this one as well. Language is slightly harder. Details are superb and I think it’s a nice next step for the child to know even more about New Years. There are stickers inside to have the child play with but I would really stick these on cardboard first and cut them out to preserve so that it makes the activities reusable. That would make it a lot better. They have other stuff you can make at the end of the book but keep in mind once you make it, you can never put it back “into” the book since one of them is about making your own lantern. Please note it says it’s compatible with a “reading pen”!!! However, mine didn’t come with one and I have no clue what name it would be under.
The fourth book is very very very different from the rest. It goes into the tales behind New Years more in depth. It has longer stories and passages in front (for the advanced reader) but at the same time, it doesn’t forget to incorporate 3D. At the end of the book, you can really make the book 3D where you open up the entire book, tie the front and back covers together (with the attached stretchy band) and you’ll see a 360 degree book/structure that you can display on your shelves right at New Years. It shows all the things that happen during New Years and the details are SUPERB. Quality is great. The box also comes with the other items that you may want to tape up with your children at home. This one is probably one I’ll keep out on the shelves for display. How pretty!
All four are great depending on your needs. I just wanted more so my kids can get the ideas ingrained in their heads!