Lanterns and Mooncakes: How to Explain Mid-Autumn Festival to Your Kids

In multi-cultural Malaysia, we celebrate a variety of colourful and interesting festivals. Our children are lucky enough to enjoy the festivities and mirth, but do they know what it’s all about? Teaching children about world cultures helps them appreciate the differences in people and their traditions. We get all cultural in here as makchic and the Sunway Putra Mall explain the Mid-Autumn Festival, so you’ll know what all those mooncakes are all about.

 

Mid-Autumn Means: Gathering and Family Reunions

Do you know the Mid-Autumn Festival has been celebrated for over 3,000 years? Second only to the Chinese New Year, this festival is meaningful to the Chinese because it means family reunions and peace. Ask your child if they know what reunions mean, and how they make them feel? Do they remember a reunion dinner or meal they have had with their family?

A big dinner with the extended family can also be an opportunity for a lesson. Ask them why they think coming together is important for people? Can the children describe what feelings they have when they experience people cooking, collaborating or playing together?

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Another possible activity is one organised by Sunway Putra Mall during the Mid-Autumn Festival – creating the largest lantern collage made out of fabric. This is also an attempt to enter into the Malaysia Book of Records for the record of “Tallest Lantern Made Of Recycled Fabrics” under Human Achievement category! Art college students and members of the public will come together to create this unique art-piece, so kids can have a taste of what it means to work together on a project. As this piece will be using recycled clothes donated by the public, this could be another mini lesson on topics like the environment.

 

Mid-Autumn Means: Post-Harvest and Thanksgiving

It was the ancient Chinese who observed that the movement of the moon was connected to the changes of the seasons and their agricultural harvests. You can ask your child if they know where their food comes from? Who is responsible for producing the food? If your children understand seasonal changes, ask them how they feel when spring comes after a long winter. Explain the idea of gratitude and thanksgiving, and how the Chinese expressed their thanks to the moon for their harvest.

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There is nothing better than social work to teach children about concepts like gratitude and appreciation. Kids can grasp the spirit of helping others better than you think!

For an introduction into charity or social work, children can attend a special get-together with kids from two charitable organisations – Touching Lives Club KL & Selangor and Yayasan Chow Kit. Organised by Sunway Putra Mall on Saturday, 23 September 2017 from 2pm onwards, kids will be entertained with fun-filled activities, as well as performances by Juice Juice, a Japanese pop group!

 

Mid-Autumn Means: All About the Moon

Now for the fun bits – everyone loves some mooncakes and lanterns! Moon worship in China was also a nod to new beginnings, and this was how the tradition of mooncakes started. The cake’s round shape represented the moon and also symbolised unity, perfect for sharing with the family. This would be a good time to savour a delicious mooncake with your child, and ask them what they notice. If they ask about the salted duck egg, tell them that represents the moon. As for lanterns, they came to represent the festival itself as they were lit up in the evenings to allow people to indulge in a little moon gazing.

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You can still partake in the ancient lantern tradition – writing riddles on the lanterns and having others guess the answers. If you’d like your kids to enjoy those colourful lanterns, you can join the Lantern Parade organised by Sunway Putra Mall on 23 September 2017 at 7pm. The parade led by a dragon troupe and moon fairies will begin at Sunway Putra Mall and end at Kenny Hills. There will also be a best dressed competition for kids aged 10 and below, and the winner will go home with two (2) pairs of Parenthood tickets!

Vibrant lanterns are available at Pro A Lantern, and the mall is also organising themed workshops for members of the public during the weekends. On 30th September (Saturday), there will be the Mooncake Making Workshop at 3pm and Lantern Making Workshop at 5pm. On 1st October (Sunday), the Lantern Making Workshop starts at 3pm and the Mooncake Making Workshop will be held at 5pm. Come for lanterns and mooncakes galore!

 

Mid-Autumn Means: Food and Fun

From feasting on delectable dishes during reunion dinner to enjoying mooncakes, the festival has always been about food and games! In the past, mothers would cook delicious food at home and families would spend some happy time together. People would also play games like dice to have fun, and kids would concentrate on all those wonderful lanterns.

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Have a blast with your child partaking in the yummy mooncakes or other delicacies that will be available at the Sunway Putra Mall during the festival. There will be an array of offerings associated with the Mid-Autumn Festival from Cold Storage, Haagen-Dazs, BreadStory, D’King, Aihana, Lolili’s Delights, Wing Heong BBQ Meat, Fai Fong Bakery and Two Pineapples. Kids from charitable homes will also be able to get their hands on goodie bags sponsored by Good2U, Cold Storage and BreadStory.

And there you have it, a way to truly learn and experience a cultural festival with your children!

 

By Nellie Liang

 

This is a sponsored post presented by Sunway Putra Mall.

+ The first 250 participants who register on Sunway Putra Mall’s Facebook page for the Lantern Parade, will receive a free mooncake and lantern (while stocks last).

+ Tourists can enjoy shopping benefits with Sunway Putra Mall Privilege Card, and those with the new HSBC Credit Card are entitled to receive a mooncake and lantern.

+ Any TGV movie ticket purchase will be entitled to free parking at Sunway Putra Mall (while stocks last).

 

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See also: Activities to Look Out for in September and October 2017

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