Monday, November 29, 2010

Our Continent Bags - Asia

Here's our Asia continent bag. As with each of our continent bags, I do my best to find a variety of things to represent the continent as a whole. This was tricky with our Asia bag, though, because we have family and friends from China and Japan and so most of our souvenirs are from those countries.

Here's what's inside:

Books. Some of the books are from China, gifts to us from my brother-in-law's girlfriend. She was so excited to find out about James being able to count to 10 in Mandarin (here's the language program we use) and so she sent us these books. I think she hopes James will continue to learn Chinese and that he'll someday learn to read these books. The blue book is kind of unintentionally humorous - it's a dictionary of American idioms... talk about getting lost in translation. :)

Japanese souvenirs: a Mangekyou (kaleidoscope), a Daruma doll, and a San Kai Koma (3 layered spinning top). These items were gifts from our friend, Kana, who recently visited her family in Japan.

Miscellaneous souvenirs: Tibetan prayer flags, a mask from Papua New Guinea*, chopsticks from Bali, and a Japanese hand fan - all of these were purchased at a local fair trade store. The silk scarf is from China and was a gift to me from my brother-in-law's girlfriend. *I can't seem to find a definite answer as to which continent Papua New Guinea belongs to. I've read mixed opinions all over the web and the majority seem to align it with Asia. Feel free to add your two cents. :)

Music and artwork. I purchased the drum CD years ago at the World Showcase area in Disney's Epcot Center and you can buy the Putumayo CD here. I wrote more about the artwork here. I chose artwork to represent India, Japan, China and Thailand.

Pictures and postcards. The pictures are from the continent kit from Montessori For Everyone. The postcards are from Singapore and Japan.

Papers, cards, and stamps. The papers can be used for Origami - this site has some easy models for kids. The rubber stamps are from my scrapbooking stash.

Chinese flashcards. I found these beautiful cards here and I cut and laminated them. I think James will enjoy looking at these and, someday, I hope he'll be interested in trying to write the characters on our Buddha Board.

Animals. I've had those two stone carved animals since I was a child!

Money, flags, and stamps. The stamps and most of the currency is fake and are simply images I found on Google. Here again I tried to represent a variety of countries. The Iraqi Dinar is real and was given to us by a friend of ours who was in Iraq during the war. The tiny coin is a real Hong Kong penny, but the other coins are fake - I think I found them in a craft store years ago. The flags (China & Japan) were purchased here.

This is a great cookbook with simple, yet authentic recipes from around the world. For each recipe there's a bit of history, too. I'd love to know if you have an authentic and kid-friendly recipe that represents Asia. If you'd like to share it please email me at countingcoconuts(at)gmail(dot)com. Thanks!

And speaking of food, one thing I think would be really fun to add to a continent bag is some felt food - in the case of Asia, something like sushi would be cute!

I hope you've enjoyed this photo tour of our Asia Continent Bag! You might also enjoy these other posts from my Continent Bag Series:
Our Continent Bags
Our Continent Bags - Storage
Our Continent Bags - North America
Our Continent Bags - Antarctica
Our Continent Bags - Europe
Our Continent Bags - Africa
Our Continent Bags - South America
Our Continent Bags - Australia

Also check out my Continent Bags photo album on the Counting Coconuts Facebook page.

I'm linking this post up to The Preschool Corner and Montessori Monday.

~Thank you for your comments!~


Sippy Cup Central said...

Mari-Ann, I love it! Thanks for the flash card link...I printed them off. I don't know if you remember, but my girls took a few mandarin lesson. We also purchased hooked on Chinese and Baby loves Chinese DVD. Thanks, Karen

Natalie PlanetSmarty said...

Wow - you definitely have a treasure trove of Asian things. Anna loved Indian box that I put together for her - we happen to have a lot of friends from India :)

Maureensk said...

Wow! You are incredible! Another great inspiration!

Catherine said...

I think it's such a neat idea to have these collections of things from different continents to help children understand more about them.
As for Papua New Guinea, from my knowledge I would say it is in Oceania/Australia. Culturally it is more aligned with Pacific Islands than Asia. As for similarities in plants and animals, it is linked to Australia.

Anonymous said...

These bags look like so much fun! When can I come play with them? ;-)

Homeschool @ sg said...

very nice collection of asia stuff! cant help notice the postcard from Singapore (i think its featuring the Singapore zoo?). *big waves from Singapore!*

Jen said...

OH I love it ALL!!! Great job!

Homeschool @ sg said...

just to add- papua new guinea is in Asia. :)

Fiona said...

Hi! I love your continent bags ;) I'm from Australia and I'm pretty sure Papua New Guinea is in Oceania, especially as CatWay wrote, it's culturally linked to the Pacific Islands rather than Asia. Wikipedia and the CIA factbook also list it as being part of Oceania. Hope this is helpful!

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure if you ever found felt sushi, but Melissa & Doug have an awesome wooden food set for sushi! I've seen it for around $15, which I think is affordable.

I teach a high school Regional and International Foods class and I am looking forward to checking out all your resources!


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