Chinese New Year 2023

Lesson plan overview

This FREE pre-intermediate lesson plan is about Chinese New Year. Students will learn about customs and traditions related to Chinese New Year or Lunar New Year, Chinese Zodiac, how to say dates, years and centuries in English as well as a lot of personality adjectives.
After an initial discussion about Chinese New Year, students learn key vocabulary by matching 6 words to the photos given (envelope, firecrackers, dumplings, New Moon, Full Moon).
Grammar: Students learn how to say years, dates and centuries in English. There are 2 speaking activities so that students can practise: First, they are asked to write down dates and years that are important to them and have their partner guess what each one means and then they answer a few questions given.
Video: Students watch a video “How we got our Holidays: Lunar New Year 2023”, which is divided into 4 parts, and complete 4 different tasks. After that they discuss what they have learned from the video and a few other questions related to Chinese New Year.
Vocabulary: Students learn about the Chinese Zodiac, the animals included in the zodiac and many personality adjectives. First they match the animals to the correct picture, then they look at a word cloud containing a few personality adjectives and say which adjectives they associate with each animal. After that they are given a more detailed description about the personality traits related to each year of the Chinese Zodiac. Students look at the adjectives and divide them into strengths and weaknesses. After that they complete a gap-fill practice exercise. Lastly, they complete 4 sentences with their own ideas and share them with a àrtner.
The conversation cards provide further speaking opportunities.

Teacher’s lesson plan

Student’s worksheet

Student’s interactive PDF

Conversation cards PDF

Pre-class activities

To send the pre-class activities to your students, copy the link below.

Vocabulary matching


The first time you watch the video, pay special attention to the correct pronunciation of the following words:

The Rat is the first animal signin the Chinese Zodiac.
They are quick-witted, resourceful and smart, but lack courage.
Rabbits tend to be gentle, quiet, and elegant, but they might be superficial, stubborn, melancholic and overly cautious.
People born in the year of the Snake are thought to be the most intuitive, while also private and reticent.
However, they sometimes can be irresponsible, moody and opportunistic.
Those born in the year of the Goat are gentle and kind-hearted, but they can be disorganised, impulsive or lazy.

Comprehension questions

In-class activities

Teacher’s lesson plan
Student’s worksheet

Conversation cards PDF

Student’s interactive PDF

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