This week, we had a number of activities to mark Korean New Year. While we regularly celebrate the Chinese New Year festival, it is also good to recognise that lunar new year is part of the cultural identify for many other nationalities, so this was an excellent opportunity for our Korean community to share some of their traditions.
Monday started with a Korean food event, which many of our parents supported by bringing in delicious dishes including spicy chicken, rice cakes and Korean cookies. This was all washed down by some tasty rice soda, which proved especially popular with our students. The proceeds of the food sale went towards the Nekoshelter, an organisation which cares for vulnerable animals in the city. Later that day, more of our parents and students ran a calligraphy activity which enabled our students to learn how to write using the Korean alphabet.
Many of our Year 9 students have also been involved in leading assemblies this week, sharing some of the cultural elements of Seollal, the Korean New Year festival. We also made a change to our traditional dress-up day – in addition to the Chinese themed costumes or red clothing, we have also encouraged our students to wear either Korean costume or the colours of the Korean flag.
Building a deeper understanding of each other’s cultures and traditions is an important part of one of our Five Pillars: internationalism. It is part of fostering a sense of mutual respect which ultimately can lead to our future generations adopting a more international mindset. This event has also been a wonderful opportunity for many of our students to take the lead in organising a successful event, developing important skills in the process. In particular, Lisa in Year 9 has taken the leading role in initiating and delivering the Seollal activities and deserves enormous credit.