Chinese New Year Crafts & Ideas for Kids

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It is that time of the year again, where our super duper list of Best Chinese New Year Crafts for Kids comes in handy! 2023 is the Chinese New Year of the Rabbit!

We love Dragon Crafts for Kids and feature many here today plus a great range of other Chinese New Year ideas. Chinese New Year 2023 is on 22nd January and it is the Year of the Rabbit! You may also like our Animal Crafts for the Chinese Zodiac.

Great Chinese New Year's Ideas for Kids
Chinese New Year 2021 is the Year of the Ox!

Chinese New Year is the most important festival in China – a literal translation is that it is the Spring Festival and the start of a new Zodiac year.

Houses are cleaned out for a fresh start and entrances to the home decorated with red decorations that signify “good fortune” or “happiness”, “wealth”, and “longevity”. As general guide, Chinese New Year crafts are all about the auspicious colour Red, the colour of wealth Gold and Dragons – plus the 12 animals of the Zodiac.  

With 2023 Being the Year of the Rabbit, we thought our Rabbit Crafts round up may be of use:

This list of Year of the Rabbit crafts also includes a number of fantastic free Rabbit Printables!

Chinese New Year Crafts for Kids

Let’s begin with Chinese Dragon DIYs

Chinese New Year Crafts for Kids - Dragon Puppets
Classic Paper Dragon Puppet (free printable)

Chinese Dragon Puppet & Printable

Make your dragon craft super easy with this Chinese New Year Dragon puppet. We have created a simple print out for you to make the craft fun and easy! Also, if you visit Happy to Shelf you can see some lovely learning activities which include the use of our dragon printable!

Paper Plate Dragon Decorations – watch them twirl

Chinese Dragon Paper Plate Twirlers

Super cute and fun, complete with printables this Paper Plate Dragon Whirligigs look fabulous and are oh so easy to make. The perfect Chinese New Year decoration fort he classroom or at home!! Love. Great for preschoolers through to grown ups!

Origami Dargon – easy paper crafts for Lunar New Year

Have a go at this wonderful Origami Dragon – this is a simple origami pattern… then use some paper cut offs to cut basic shapes (we show you how!) and turn your basic origami project into this fabulous dragon craft. These would look fantastic as wall decor or combined into a garland for Lunar New Year decorations. Do watch the video on auto play too!

Gorgeous Dancing Dragon Card

Or how about this beautiful Dancing Dragon Card to print and colour? So pretty!

Fun Paper Dragon Corner Bookmark

Origami Dragon Bookmark Designs

We ADORE these fabulous Dragon Corner Bookmarks for Chinese New Year. Promise they re super easy and of course fun to make.

A great Dragon Paper Craft for Chinese New Year!

Chinese Dragon Masks (with Template)

Or turn your little one INTO a dragon with these fun Dragon Masks. How fabulous. Perfect for celebrating Chinese New Year! You can choose from this set – cut out the parts and make your own.. or:

Printable Dragon Coloring Pages Masks

Or have a go at the Printable Dragon Mask Coloring Pages!

Upcycled Egg Carton Dragon Craft

Egg Carton Dragon for preschoolers

We do love a good recycled craft.. and this adorable dragon made from egg carton is no exception. A fabulous Egg Carton Dragon from I Heart Crafty Things. Hop over and learn how to make it today!

Fantastic Cup Cake Liner Dragon Activity

Cupcake Liner Chinese Dragon Art

Or have a go at this gorgeously simple Dragon Art project. Use colourful cupcake liners to complete it.

Find out more about this Dragon Craft for kids from I Heart Crafty Things.

chinese new year craft dragon
Classic Egg Carton Dragon


Egg Carton Dragon 
Puppets for Chinese New Year

I featured this Dragon many moons ago, when I first started the round ups on Red Ted Art. I thought it was lovely then and think it is lovely now! So am sharing it with you again. Anything made from Egg Cartons is brilliant. Just a “to hand” house hold item. Add a little paint and look what you get. This one is from Activity Village. Love.Egg Carton Dragon Puppet

chinese new year craft puppet
Or Egg Craton Dragon Puppet

Or… step it up a notch and make a Puppet out of your egg carton dragon as per Family Disney! Simply gorgeous. Unfortunately the step by step guide and photos for this one are no longer available, but thought you would still like to see the photo!

chinese new year craft dragon
TP Roll Dragons are a must!

Cardboard Tube Chinese Dragon

Oh my. I am getting Cardboard Tube envy, as the self crowned Cardboard Tube Queen, I wish I had thought of this fabulous dragon puppet. I LOVE IT! Learning We Like came up with the idea. So cute!

chinese new year craft dragon
Handprints are a great addition to any Chinese Dragon

Chinese Dragon with Handprints

And another craft that makes my mummy heart melt… look at this adorable dragon’s body is made up of the children’s handprints. How cute is that. Certainly a new one for the “hand craft drawer”. Baabaabeep and her wonderful children enchant us! You can use our free dragon printable at the top of this page to combine it with the hands used here!

Paper Bag Chinese Dragon Puppet (with Printable)

I love this easy to make Chinese Dragon Paper Bag Puppet from Pink Stripey Socks!

Have a go at DIY Lion Masks instead of Dragons

Paper Bag Lion Masks for Chinese New Year

Or if you are looking for something a little different to the traditional Chinese Dragon Crafts, Pink Stripey Socks has these amazing Paper Bag Lion Masks to make. Wonderful!

Chinese Lantern Crafts

Dragons are super fun, especially for kids.. but lanterns.. well lanterns are just so pretty! Especially if you are able to light them up with fairy lights or tea lights. Here are some super fun DIY Chinese New Year Lantern Craft Ideas!

Simple Chinese Paper Lantern Craft for Kids
Classic Paper Lanterns are perfect for Chinese New Year

Red Chinese Lanterns made from paper

I remember making these as a child for “Carnival Day” (February). They are really easy to make and fun. And look great if you make lots to hang up together. These are super easy to make and great for practicing cutting skills. So make a Chinese Lantern today! You can either pop a tea light in glass in the middle or add a little handle to the top for hanging.

Chinese New Year - Lantern Fairy Lights via www.redtedart.com
Mini Paper Chinese Lanterns make great fairy lights!

Lantern Fair Lights

Or.. take the same humble lantern… and make them in smaller. Then attach to fairy lights. They look soooo lovely. Chinese Lantern Fairy Lights post. A super lovely twist on the traditional lantern craft. Whilst on the topic of “cutting”. Paper Cutting forms a traditional part of Chinese activities. Learn more about this with Miss Panda Chinese.

Chinese New Year Crafts - Lanterns (1)
Upcycle TP Rolls into mini Chinese Lanterns!

TP Roll Lanterns

Or back to our favourite TP Roll Crafts – make lanterns out of those! Again, fun and frugal. Check out our TP Roll Lantern post for how to.

Easy Chinese lantern craft for preschoolers
Easy Chinese Lantern Craft for Toddlers

Not only does this Chinese Lantern Suncatcher LOOK fabulous, it is also easy for preschoolers to make!!! Find out more over on The Gingerbread House!

Chinese Lantern Art Project

Love how sweet this Chinese Lantern Art Project is. Each child can make their own or they can collaborate and create one piece of art together. Visit Pink Stripey Socks for more!

Chinese Take Out Lantern

Ok.. not a “traditional” Chinese craft as such, but I just couldn’t resist  – don’t these lanterns made from “take out boxes” simply look fabulous? The idea is from Make Handmade. I love it!!

Other Chinese New Year Craft Activities and Themes

There is always an “ecclectic” section of crafts at the end? I guess I could have sorted some into “Paper Chinese New Year Crafts” or “Animal Chinese New Year crafts”.. but sometimes it is easier just just mixed them all up together.. so.. what do you think of these fun crafts?!

red envelope-001
Learn about Chinese New Year Red Envelopes

Chinese Money Red Envelopes

The Chinese like to give money in red envelopes for prosperity and good luck. Have a go at making your OWN red envelops, beautifully decorated with this Chinese New Year Red Money Envelope craft. Such a fabulous Paper Craft for kids!

Make some Chinese Paper Fans

Paper Plate Fans for Chinese New Year

A great idea is to combine paper plates with craft sticks to make these fabulous looking Chinese New Year fans! I love the combination of gold, red and black to give them that fabulous Chinese New Year look. More information and detailed photos on The Pinterested Parent!

Chinese Paper Fan

Nothing quite like a simple Chinese Fan! I thought the “materials needed” section make this sound terribly complicated.. I am sure you can make equally pretty fans with less “things”…. e.g. use a gold pen instead of stamps or cut out gold paper. The ideas is from originally from Craft Kaboose but the sight is no longer available. Here are great alternative instructions.

Chinese Drum – the prefect noise maker for preschoolers

Make your own drum to ward off the evil spirits – this one is made from an old CD (so you get a nice bit of noise) and beads. So easy and fun! From St Louise Public Library Parents (go the library!!).

Noise maker for Chinese New Year

Paper Plate Drums for Chinese New Year

Or alternatively try this Paper Plate Chinese New Year Drum for kids to make. Hop over to Gift of Curiosity for these easy instructions!

Goldfish Kite made from Toilet Paper Rolls

More Toilet Paper Roll Fun, with Lightly Enchanted who sure enchanted me, when they made these adorable Goldfish out of my favourite Cardboard Tubes! I think they look ADORABLE and I can just imagine these fluttering in the breeze. They are fabulous.

Goldfish Origami for Chinese New Year

Blending cultures with some Origami for kids. Start your children on their first origami animal with these adorable little cute goldfish. I always mean to try out more origami. These would look great as a mobile. And if you fancy some “fancy origami” paper and don’t have any, check out my free printables page with links to designs to print off at home! Crafty Crafted has a step by step guide!

Sand in My Toes shows us how to make thse cute Chinese Good Luck Ornaments for kids!

Kids will love this Chinese New Year Zodiac activity

Fingerprint Animal Zodiac Activity

Fingerprint Zodiac Animal Activity – from the fun handprint blog – this would complement our collection of Chinese Zodica Animals really well too!

Make Your Own Fortune Cookies

Did you know that Fortune Cookies are not really eaten in China?! They have more been “invented for the Wet”, never the less I think they make a fun addition to any Chinese New Year round up.

From the AllRecipes website.. a recipe sharing fortune cookies with you. I have never made these before, but really do want to give them a go. Maybe there is time to make them for Red Ted’s nursery… mmmh. Yes, I think I will!

Paper Fortune Cookies

If the “real” edible Fortune Cookies proove a little difficult.. why don’t you make this much easier Paper Fortune Cookie version instead. Super fun and easy. LOVE Paper Crafts!

Best Chinese New Year Picture Books for Kids:

Note: the following contains amazon affiliate links added for your convenience. SHould you choose to purchase via these links, I will earn a small commission that goes towards the upkeep of this site.

Books about Chinese New Year for Kids
Teach kids about Chinese New Years with this great collection of books!

Have a VERY HAPPY CHINESE NEW YEAR and do try out some crafts!

More great Dragon Crafts for Preschool and older here:

Dragon Crafts are perfect for Chinese New Year!

And for Year of the Rabbit Crafts:

chinese new year of the rabbit crafts
Lots of fun with Rabbit DIYs

You may also like our Animal Crafts for the Chinese Zodiac.

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