Year of the Pig celebrated at Confucius Institute Samoa

China’s Year of the Pig was heralded at the newly opened Confucius Institute (CI) at the National University of Samoa (NUS), by vice-chancellor Fui Dr. Asofou So’o and CI director Dr. Liang Guojie, yesterday.

China’s Spring Festival, or Chinese New Year marks a new lunar year, and a change of zodiac which runs a 12 year cycle. This year is the year of the pig, the 12th zodiac in the cycle and a symbol of luck, wealth, honesty and hard work.

It is celebrated by gifting children with hong bao, or red packets of money or treats, singing and dancing, and of course eating Chinese food. The NUS community and even a group of children from Magiagi Primary School were invited to share in the festivities.

NUS Vice Chancellor Fui said the NUS was happy to host the celebration.

“The Confucius Institute here at NUS hopes to have this celebration every year, to not only bring together our Samoan community to appreciate another culture but also learn their way of life,” he said.

Spring Festival is the most important traditional festival in China, Dr. Liang Guojie said. 

“We are so happy to communicate our traditions with the Samoan people,” he said. “That is the mission of the Confucius Institute, to teach our language, and our culture.”

He said the festivities were a “huge success.”

Volunteer teachers installed in five schools around Samoa to teach Chinese performed songs, taught the art of making jiao zi, or dumplings, and even gave a martial arts demonstration.

Children of the Chinese community performed singing and dancing, and Dr Liang’s nine-year-old son performed on the traditional Chinese gourd flute called a hulusi.

One of the six new Chinese language teachers in Samoa, Yutang Liu said he was happy to be teaching in Samoa. He has just begun teaching at Avele College, and already loves his students, he said.

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