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Dragon Boat Festival 端午 resources

  • CalendarAvailable on request
  • Clock outlineFlexible

Image by melaniko from Pixabay.

The Dragon Boat Festival

The Dragon Boat Festival, ‘Duanwu’ or 端午, is an important traditional festival in China and many other Asian countries.

The festival is actually a celebration of the ancient Chinese poet Qu Yuan who, according to legend, drowned in a river during the ‘Warring States’ period (c. 475 to 221 BCE). It is said that after discovering what had happened, local people frantically raced their boats to search for him, dropping lumps of rice into the river in the process so that fish would not feast on his body.

This is the reason that so many boat races are held at this time, and why families make and eat ‘zongzi’ - a kind of sticky rice dumpling wrapped in bamboo leaves.

As Qu Yuan is said to have drowned on the fifth day of the fifth month of the lunar calendar, then the festival is held every year on this day. The date changes for those of us who use other calendars however so in 2023, the festival lands on 22 June.

Activities for schools

Online resources

To get access to Cardiff Confucius Institute’s resources for you to use independently with pupils in class please email

China Days and China Half Days

For our China Days / China Half Days, two Cardiff Confucius Institute tutors will design and deliver tailor-made sessions for your pupils based around the Dragon Boat Festival. Activities might include a talk on how this event is celebrated in China; teaching pupils how to make their own little paper dragon boats; or holding a special Dragon Boat Festival assembly.

China Days and China Half Days:

  • may be held in person or online
  • are available in person for schools no more than 45 minutes by public transport from Cardiff
  • last approximately 4-5 hours (China Days) and or 2.5 hours (China Half Days)

Please note that these events are based on staff availability, and we will be asking for a contribution to cover our costs.

Please email to discuss your options with the subject line: Dragon Boat Festival China Day.

Other resources

Videos from Dragon Boat Festival Activities Day

On 27 May 2022, pupils enjoyed live interactive online sessions with Cardiff Confucius Institute tutors at our Dragon Boat Festival Activities Day.

At special sessions, children discovered the origins of the event; learnt some Mandarin words & phrases related to the festival; found out what Chinese people eat; and even made paper zongzi!

Videos of the sessions:

Years 1-2Years 3-6Years 7-11
Traditions & customs of the Dragon Boat FestivalIntroduction to the Dragon Boat FestivalCustoms & traditions of the Dragon Boat Festival
Basic Mandarin classBasic Mandarin classBasic Mandarin class
Traditional Chinese paper-cuttingMaking paper dragon boats & zongziMaking 'zongzi' using the art of Chinese paper folding

To find all videos visit our YouTube Dragon Boat Festival 2022 playlist.

Further resources

Find out more

For more information about the activity, please visit our website.

About the organiser

This activity is organised by Cardiff Confucius Institute. Contact Victoria Ucele at for more details.

How to book

These online Dragon Boat Festival activities can be used by school pupils either in class, with their families or by themselves.

TicketThis activity is free

GlobeAccess the activity resources online


  • TickTeachers
  • TickFamilies
  • TickFoundation - ages 3-7, foundation year and years 1 and 2
  • TickKey stage two - ages 7-11, years 3-6
  • TickKey stage three - ages 11-14, years 7-9
  • TickKey stage four - ages 14-16, years 10-11
  • TickKey stage five - ages 16-18, years 12-13

Teacher supervision is required.

Curriculum themes

  • TickExpressive arts
  • TickHealth and wellbeing
  • TickHumanities
  • TickLanguages, literacy and communication
  • TickSocial sciences
  • TickExtracurricular

Activity type

  • TickActivity
  • TickOnline resource


  • TickExtracurricular or independent learning
  • TickSupporting curriculum themes
  • TickWidening university participation

Share this event


  • British Council Wales
  • Hanban
  • Welsh Government