In the Classroom: Chinese Fireworks

This week we're talking about fireworks. Fireworks have been used for centuries in China. Invented around 200 BC, they began from humble origins when bamboo was thrown into fire and exploded. Later, after the invention of gunpowder, they evolved to the fireworks that we know today. The Chinese were also the first to produce colorful fireworks by combining different minerals into the gunpowder. Fireworks are an integral part of Chinese festivals because they are thought to scare away evil spirits and bring good luck.

We were inspired by this blog post on ART PROJECTS FOR KIDS to create our own Chinese fireworks. We can't make the real deal, but this is the next best thing.   
Black, navy, purple (Note: Teachers, for younger students use a smaller piece of paper.)
Oil pastels or brightly colored crayons
Spray to set oil pastels (optional)
Brightly colored paper for mating (optional)

1. Draw three or four large dots on your paper. 

2. Begin making radial lines (squiggly or zigzag lines) around one of the dots. Choose another color and continue drawing squiggly lines around in a circle. Continue drawing lines with multiple colors until you reach the edge of the paper. 

3. Move to another dot and continue with process until the entire paper is covered.
4. Optional: Mat on brightly colored paper to really make your fireworks pop!

Have you been inspired by "In the Classroom?"  If you'd like this series to continue, send us an email at or post a message on our Facebook page and let us know. We want to hear from you!

- Laura Touhey


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