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How to Make the Learning of Chinese Characters fun?

Updated: Jul 19, 2023

Fun and engaging learning activities provide opportunities for children to start building up experience in writing Chinese characters at a young age and prepare themselves for the increased amount of handwriting in their future study.

Learning to write Chinese characters can be interesting and fun to some children while daunting and boring to some others. Handwriting is often considered the biggest obstacle for Chinese learners (even the children in china!), and if not taught properly, many will give up their learning of the language as the practice seems nonstop and 'being successful' seems unachievable to them.

As foreign language teachers, we need to plan carefully and prepare our students for the amount of handwriting they'll be involved with in high school. Chinese handwriting needs to be taught in a staged form and the learning experience must offer a range of interesting and engaging activities when students are under the illusion of 'having fun' instead of working or practising.

There're so many ways to plant the seed of fun in teaching children to write Chinese characters, using objects, such as play dough, beans, lego bricks, etc, to create the shape of the character, illustrating the character to show its meaning, writing with a stick in a tray of sand/salt/rice, etc.

I'm going to share with you some fun in-class activities for K-6 students to learn/practise writing the Chinese character '兔'(rabbit), after all, this is still the Year of the Rabbit!

1. It's 兔 Cute! (Year 1-2)

It's 兔 Cute!

Chinese handwriting can often be considered challenging for learners of all ages, especially the little ones. This activity provides a great opportunity for younger students to dive in and have a fun experience of learning to write Chinese characters. To best scaffold our learners, have them rainbow write this character, which means they can use different coloured pencil to write each stroke.

2. The Magic 兔 (Year 3-4)

The Magic 兔

Challenge the children to write as many characters as they can. They can write in different sizes and in different colours. They must follow the correct stroke order. Ask they to first write with a lead pencil and then trace over with a marker or coloured pencils if they wish! This allows them to practise again without realising it!

3. The Easter 兔! (Year 5-6)

The Easter 兔

For older students, they love creating and designing their own bunny in celebration of Easter! Get students to practise writing the character first before writing on their Bunny. This also opens up opportunities to introduce or revisit the basic radicals, discuss and analyse the character with your students, invite background speakers to teach the rest of class to write this character, and challenge your students to memorise this character before the end of lesson! There is no doubt that their finished bunnies would make great bullet board or window display!


Don't forget to vote for your favourite activity!

My students would love

  • It's 兔 Cute!

  • The Magic 兔

  • The Easter 兔

You can vote for more than one answer.


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