Appreciating Chinese Culture

Matthew, Year 11, Century Park Campus

There are many aspects of Chinese culture that I enjoy. One of my favourite parts are the Chinese holidays. I always celebrate Chinese New Year with my family when we go to visit our relatives in Singapore or Malaysia. We spend time together, and usually the younger kids play with toys while my older relatives play cards or talk. I like to do both, and I spend time with both my younger and older cousins. There are always delicious goodies like pineapple tarts and bak kwa (dried pork). We have a large family meal where all of the kids sit together. During this period, younger kids give oranges to their elders, and in return are given a red packet with money inside. At night in Malaysia, we enjoy the fireworks outside.

Another holiday I enjoy is the Mid-Autumn Festival, which is when we eat mooncakes and other delicious snacks, and we have the chance to enjoy nature. These Chinese holidays emphasise family and spending time together which I like a lot.

Another aspect of Chinese culture that I enjoy is the food. Chinese food is very special and I like it a lot. My favourite foods are bak kut teh (pork rib soup), beef noodles, carrot cake, Hainanese chicken rice, and mee pok (flat yellow noodles). I like these dishes even more than other foods like pizza or pasta. It reminds me of Singapore whenever I eat them.

In Chinese culture class at YCIS, I have learned about Chinese cultural traditions and what they signify. For example, people set off firecrackers on Chinese New Year because in the past it was believed that this scared off a creature known as Nian (in the story, Nian terrorised people on the first day of the year). Chinese New Year is all about bringing families together to celebrate.

Another aspect of Chinese culture I enjoy is the arts. There are many sculptures and paintings that depict spiritual figures of Buddhism. Eastern-style martial arts and kung fu were developed by the Chinese, too.

Overall, I find learning more about Chinese culture very interesting.

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