Chinese New Year Displays

Chinese New Year is a great topic for classroom displays and always popular with readers. One of the most popular posts on this site is this Chinese New Year Dragon (with full instructions – see the comments section)That one produces a hanging dragon display but what else might you do? Here are a few ideas and resources to inspire you.

2012 is the Year of the Dragon so I thought we’d concentrate on dragons for these displays. The New Year falls early this year (Monday, 23 January 2012) so you haven’t much time. Any of these ideas from the Classroom Displays Flickr Group will give a good result in quite a short time.


 Dragon Mask


First up comes this dragon mask from Avon Grove Charter School.This gives an impressive effect that  is fairly easy to achieve. The main part of the dragon is just assembled from construction paper. Children could be encouraged to research and design their own version. There are ready-made patterns for dragon masks available but this is so simple I think it could be a good opportunity for some interaction and creative input. Once you have the main mask done it is a simple matter to add some red streamers and there you are, one dragon to add to a display.

Individual Dragons

Next even more dragons from Dogboneart. This time children have made individual dragons using just a concertina folded piece of A3 and some folded streamers.

These are fun and if you wanted to make them look a little more appropriate for New Year I would suggest limiting the colour palette to dark red and yellow. Some gold metallic paper or sequin waste would also work well. If I had enough space I might be tempted to put these on a black background with red borders.

Happy New Year

Thirdly we have more dragons from Aolife (poppiesandlilies), this time a little more formal. The children have coloured in a template dragon head and then added a concertina folded body made from construction paper. I like the choice of red backing paper here though I might have added some black areas to provide some more contrast.

Chinese New Year Display Resources and Activities

Key colours to work with for Chinese New Year are red, black and gold. This can be tricky if the whole school is competing for scarce display materials and resources so you might have to get creative.Much of your red and black paper might have been used at either Halloween or Christmas so you might be a little limited. Making use of red card and black and gold marker pens can be one way round it. Also consider using a yellow or orange border for either a black or red board. Of course if you have already got a board that was backed in red then sprucing it up with new borders and labels might be all that is needed. Chinese New Year displays are quite short-lived and will need to come down at half term so keeping it simple and recycling where possible is probably a good idea.
Teacher’s Pet have really gone to town on these this year with some fantastic Chinese New Year display resources. In the role play section they have everything you need to set up a Chinese Take-away. There are also banners and other items for Chinese New Year displays. As usual their display resources are free, though they do ask for a donation. Some of the activities are on their members site and that does cost to join, though it is very reasonable for such high quality resources.

Draw A Dragon

This  great tutorial with step by step instruction for helping children to draw a Chinese dragon can be found on Miss Julie’s Art School blog

Quick and Easy Dragon

If you have some coloured plastic cups that you don’t need then this  idea from Jellyish Jelly might be just what you need. You can do something similar with cut up painted egg boxes if you want a smaller dragon.






A New Year Banner

Finally Early Learning HQ has a lovely multi-language Happy New Year display banner  (great if you have plenty of red and yellow ink for printing it out!) and lots of other ideas and activities.

Have I missed anyone’s favourites? Do let me know in the comments section.

Remembrance Day Displays Poppies


I love this display for Remembrance Day. The colours work so well together. The black backing paper provides a perfect neutral background for the red of the children’s work and the lettering. The use of a bright green accent as thin border on the board is then repeated as a mount for the work.
Usually I don’t like ‘fussy cutting’ children’s drawings but on this occasion it has worked well. I know I always tell people to position work using guidelines but on this occasion the angles have been carefully balanced. It’s a great visual skill if you can do this but it is hard to get it right. This does.

You can find some really good Remembrance resources including editable poppies, crosses and writing frames at Teachers Pet

IMGP3696, originally uploaded by Emu582

January hallway display: “We’ll frolic and play, the Eskimo way” 1

winter display

Classroom Displays reader Michaele has more about this lovely January display over at her blog Kindergarten’s 3 R’s:. Her kindergarten students were curious about her ethnic origins and spent some time over November and December exploring Eskimo culture. I think this display is a wonderful example of using positive images and information to undermine stereotyping. It’s exactly the sort of thing my NCFE2 teaching assistant students have just been looking for examples of for their Unit 2 assignment. It also shows that even the youngest pupils can benefit from this sort of project work.
“Walking in a winter wonderland…”

My students learned about parkas, mukluks, mittens, and fur ruffs, then colored their own characters, decorating the parka’s qupaks (fancy trim or embellishments), and gluing cotton balls around the coat hood. I left the trees up from December’s display as background, and added white streamer runs of “snow” upon which the Eskimos could play..

She adds that the kindergarten children enjoyed making their own Eskimos and adding them to the display.

Spanish Spring Display – La Primavera 1

La Primavera

La Primavera

La Primavera, originally uploaded by lisibo.

Here’s a lovely Key Stage 2 Spanish display for Spring based on the the QCA Spanish KS2 Unit La Primavera.
Lisa says:
The pupils were given an extract of the poem La Primavera by Antonio Machado and rewrote it, giving the daisy a different role.
The extract from the poem was adapted by the pupils, replacing the words highlighted with their own place and role for the daisy (la margarita)

La Primavera
Pupils replaced the word for place, une escuella (a school), with their own choices such as una piscina (a pool), un parque (a park) un supermarcado (a supermarket)

Then una maestra ( a teacher) was changed to la salvavidas-the lifeguard, la dependienta – the shopassistant, la recepcionista – the receptionist etc

The children’s work is really delightful and they’ve obviously taken a lot of pride in producing it.


Spring Classroom Displays – Kites 1

kites in KS1

Simple instructions for ‘bagged’ backgrounds

Here’s a lovely classroom display idea for a windy March afternoon in Keystage 1:
The background was done onto sheets of A3 white paper with a technique called “bagging”. It’s messy 🙂

You need

  • Shallow containers, Plastic paint roller trays work well
  • Blue and white paint (the kind that comes in squeezy bottles) Water it down a little if it seems thick.
  • Crumpled up plastic carrier bags.
  • Lots of newspaper
  • Aprons for the kids
  • 3 helpers – or to be very fast on your feet!
  • Space to put the paper to dry flat. You don’t want drips.
  • Music – optional but fun 🙂


  • Set up 3 trays of paint.
  • Dark blue
  • Light blue (mix some white with it)
  • White
  • 3 tables with a small group of children at each and one tray.

Crumple up a carrier bag to make a ball, dip it in the dark blue paint, push it down on the flat bit of the paint tray (if you’ve used one) or onto some newspaper to remove some of the paint and then print onto the paper by dabbing it quickly. You want the bag fairly dry, not overloaded with paint.

  • Remove and replace with the next bit of paper.

I said it was messy!

  • The paper is then moved to the light blue table and the process repeated.
  • Finally it moves to the white table and repeat.
  • Paper is removed to flat surface to dry.
  • When all done and dry select best ones for background. Lettering can either be cut from spare sheets or clouds can be cut to show background through.The same technique can be used with shades of grey to make clouds.

    Cloud made with the same technique

    Or even surf 🙂