Free Lesson Plan: Meshing Valentine’s Day and Chinese Culture with the Qixi Bridge

Qixi Bridge Lesson – used for the meshing of Valentine’s day and the Chinese equivalent

Goals/Objectives: To have students show the bringing together of loved ones accomplished by bridging the gap between them

Background information: The Qixi bridge is a Chinese story about the cowherd and the weaver girl in Chinese mythology. Their love was forbidden, so they were banished to opposite sides of the silver river (which is a symbol of the milky way). Once a year, on the 7th day of the 7th lunar month, a flock of magpies would form a bridge to reunite the lovers for one day.

In China, this story inspires the Qixi festival. While the festival is not held close to Valentine’s day, it touches on similar themes and can be used around that time as well.

Materials: White computer paper, pencils, colored pencils/crayons, the story of Qixi

Demo:

  1. Hold a sheet of white paper in a landscape manner. Fold the paper by touching the right end to the left end.
  2. Cut two horizontal lines in the center of the paper.
  3. Unfold the paper to reveal a 3D bridge.
  4. Decorate to reflect the story of Qixi. Have the weaver girl on one side and the cowherd on the other.

Steps:

  1. Introduce the idea of Valentine’s day to the class. Bring up the idea of loved ones coming together.
  2. Recite the story of Qixi. This can be done by presenting a video, a PowerPoint, an illustrated book, or by simply reciting it to the class
  3. Show the demo of the cowherd and the weaver girl. Explain that this is the goal of today’s class.
  4. Hand out one sheet of white paper to each student.
  5. Demonstrate folding the paper in half and cutting two horizontal lines to unfold and reveal a bridge.
  6. Have kids draw a person on each side of the bridge, either mirroring the story or having them create their own version. Encourage them to add as much detail as possible.
  7. If there are any kids who finish early have them fold the paper and decorate the outside to make it into a card.

See also: Chinese New Year Group Dragon

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