Create your very own Dancing Dragon in time for Chinese New Year!


The Dragon Dance is one of the most anticipated events of the Chinese New Year celebrations. The dance is only performed on special occasions and is believed to ward off evil spirits and at the same time brings good fortune. The dragon has long been valued in Chinese culture as a caring creature, despite its fierce looks.

The Chinese New Year will be celebrated on 8th February 2016. Be ready to hold your very own dragon dance with this step by step guide to making a dragon provided by educational resources specialists, TTS*. You could use the dragon to help raise funds for your schools - he'd make a great raffle prize! Alternatively you could raise funds to buy this for your school, providing pupils with an opportunity to create a fantastic piece of artwork which could be displayed for many visitors to enjoy for years to come.

Step 1 - Making the Dragon's Head

Firstly, paint the head with a couple of layers of white acrylic paint or Gesso. This will make the other acrylic colours or Deco patch paper you use to decorate the head much brighter. Paint chosen areas with acrylic paint to add detail and colour e.g. eyes, mouth, horns etc. Highlight features and detail using beautiful Deco patch patterned papers.

Next, use a selection of collage materials e.g. feathers, sequins, glitter glue and dazzle dots to finish off!

Step 2 - Making the Dragon's Costume

Decide the length you want the body to be and cut the gold foil to size. Fold the foil in two as this creates the main ‘body’ of the costume. Choose a colour of holographic foil to make the scalloped ‘spine’ of the costume, fold over and over it into a ‘concertina’ to help cut a uniformed scalloped shape. Cut a length for each side of the costume and use double sided tape to attach the holographic foil ‘spine’.

Make the spiked ridges along the back using the self-adhesive foil. For each spike use the grid on the back as a size guide and cut 2 rectangles the same size (we used 8 squares). Cut both to a ‘V’ shape on the lower half, peel off the backing and stick halfway down one side of the scalloped spine. Stick the other on top to match. Cut the top half into a ‘spike’. Repeat process down the spine.

Cut scales from holographic self-adhesive foil and stick randomly over the ‘body’. Add extra colour and texture by sticking feathers and sequins along the edge of the costume.

"Kung Hei Fat Choi" (Happy New Year!) and happy making.

*TTS is a leading supplier of innovative, high quality education resources for early years, primary and secondary schools. Our products range from curriculum resources, ICT and sports equipment through to furniture and outdoor statement pieces that create a real wow and that children will love to play on every day. From humble beginnings in a garage in the Midlands, to supplying over 64 countries across the globe, we have been talking to educators and inventing new reasons for children to love learning for over 30 years. With the help of teachers and practitioners we have created thousands of reasons for children to love learning and each year around 400 new resources are invented.

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