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GNS Celebrates the Year of the Rabbit

GNSGNS photo
On January 20, parent volunteers organized a community Lunar New Year celebration in the Pemberton Woods Dining Hall. Families from the Junior, Middle and Senior Schools gathered to celebrate the Year of the Rabbit with a variety of activities, food and performances.  Watch highlights from the Lunar New Year celebration below:

For 2023, the official first day of the Lunar New Year is January 22 and many of our students celebrate this special day in different ways. 

“To celebrate the New Year, my family and I put red envelopes on a golden flower tree, “ said Ylinn Wang ’26 “Then each child can go up and pick their own envelope. In general, the money in each varies which makes it fun. We normally visit family, and clean the house and put up decorations for the family dinner that will, no doubt, be happening.” 

Senior School students held a Lunar New Year assembly on Wednesday, January 25, which featured performances including traditional dances and Peking opera. The Grade 11 SL Mandarin class contributed with a fun video listing the superstitions people observe in the days leading up to New Year including not cutting one’s hair as it is believed to be cutting away luck. The story of Sun Wukong, the monkey king, was shared through a short stop-motion video created by three sisters: Alexis ‘24, Ayden (me!) ‘26, and Averi Kuo ‘28. The traditional dances were performed by Lily Kang ‘23 and Jo-An Chia ‘23 while the Peking opera was led by Kate Roed ‘24. 

After the assembly, students and teachers headed down to Lower Gudewill for a Culture Fair. There were two tables set up for the game of Mahjong and multiple stands featuring a variety of food from around the world including sweet coconut jelly and challah. 

“The main goal of the Culture Fair is to celebrate the beautiful cultural diversity of the GNS community, and give people a chance to represent and express their culture and traditions through running stands and wearing cultural dress, while also being a great community-building opportunity,” explained Advocacy Prefect, Solomon Yi-Kieran ‘23, “I noticed a lot of people who were Canadian, or people who didn’t have traditional clothing, chose not to wear anything special on Culture Day. I want people to get inspired by others, and to think outside the box. Representing your culture doesn’t just have to be traditional clothes, it could be something as simple as a shirt with your country’s name on it, a sports jersey from your country, or a trendy style in your country. I want people to expand their idea of what their own culture is, taking inspiration from tradition, the modern world, and other cultures.”

In the future, Solomon hopes that the next Advocacy Prefect will continue this tradition while also making some improvements to further highlight each culture, “Celebrating culture and our school’s diversity is incredibly important, and the Culture Fair is a great way to do this while also being an opportunity for community building. I plan on encouraging the next Advocacy Prefect to work on making the Culture Fair a separate event to the Lunar New Year assembly so as to give it more time and equally encourage all cultures, while also giving the Lunar New Year assembly its importance.”  


The Culture Fair and Lunar New Year assembly turned out to be a great success as it provided many students with the opportunity to showcase their talents as well as share aspects of their own cultures through food and cultural dress. Watch the Lunar New Year Assembly below: