Great Wall of China

What's Up, World? China

Take a peek at life in this faraway country.

Are you ready to learn about “The Red Dragon”? That’s one of China’s many nicknames. To many Chinese people, the dragon is a symbol of strength and good luck.

China is a country in Asia, and it has the world’s largest population. Around 1.4 billion people live there. That’s about four times the number of people in the United States!

Civilization in China goes back thousands of years. Festivals help keep the country’s old—and new—traditions alive. One event is the Harbin Ice Festival. The festival began in 1963 and has grown every year since. Today visitors can see life-sized castles, six-story towers, and sculptures of creatures like dragons—all made of snow and ice!

Keep reading to learn more about this incredible nation.

Creature Feature

Giant pandas live in mountain forests where they eat bamboo and climb trees. They can weigh more than 200 pounds.

Pandas used to be endangered. People hunted them and destroyed their forest habitats. But now China protects pandas, so their numbers are rising.

Danita Delimont on Offset


The Chinese Lantern Festival is held 15 days after the Lunar New Year. People welcome good fortune with bright lanterns, or hanging lights. To celebrate, they dance, march in parades, and watch fireworks.

Yang Huafeng/China News Service via Getty Images

Let’s Eat!

Hot pot is a stew that cooks while you eat it. Family and friends gather around this bubbling pot of soup. They add meat, vegetables, and other ingredients and wait while it cooks. Sauces like chili garlic oil are used for dipping. Yum!

Look at This!

The Great Wall of China is the world’s biggest structure. It was originally more than 13,000 miles long. That’s about 5 times the distance between Los Angeles and New York City. The wall was built over thousands of years to protect China from attacks.

Fun and Games

A popular game in China is jianzi (jeeahn-zeuh). Players use feet and knees to pass a light object called a jianzi, or shuttlecock, back and forth. The jianzi can be made with a coin, paper, and colorful feathers.

BJI/Blue Jean Images/Getty Images

  1. What can you infer about Harbin’s climate from the article’s description of the Harbin Ice Festival?
  2. According to the article, what was the purpose of the Great Wall of China?
  3. List three facts about China that you can learn from the map.
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