Grab your kid’s toy vehicles for an interactive matching game! Our DIY parking lot craft is a fun, hands-on way to learn Chinese vocabulary about vehicles!
Through this fun parking lot activity, my daughter learned how to say and read the Chinese names for taxi, ambulance, garbage truck, fire engine, police car, and school bus!
This activity was inspired by a name spelling activity from the website Frugal Fun for Boys and Girls!
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Important vehicle vocabulary
Since I’m learning Chinese with my children, I like to keep track of Chiense characters that we reviewed with each activity.
Here is a list of common vehicle terms in simplified Chinese, traditional Chinese, Hanyu Pinyin, and English!
I hope this can be a helpful reference for other parents who are learning along with their kids!
- 停车场 / 停車場 (Tíngchēchǎng / parking lot)
- 校车 / 校車 (Xiàochē / school bus)
- 救护车 / 救護車 (Jiùhù chē / ambulance)
- 消防车 / 消防車 (Xiāofáng chē / fire truck)
- 垃圾车 / 垃圾車 (Lājī chē [China}/ Lèsè chē [Taiwan] / Garbage truck)
- 出租车 / 出租車 (Chūzū chē / taxi cab)
- 警车 / 警車 (Jǐngchē / police car)
- 自行车 / 自行車 (Zìxíngchē / bicycle)
- 三轮车 / 三輪車 (Sānlúnchē / tricycle)
- 推土机 / 推土機 (Tuītǔjī / bulldozer)
- 挖掘机 / 挖掘機 (Wājué jī / excavator)
- 吊车 (Diàochē / crane)
- 摩托车 / 摩托車 (Mótuō chē / motorcycle)
What you need to make a cardboard parking lot
- Large piece of cardboard
- Black and white paint; I used this acrylic paint
- Optional: Strips of cardboard or craft sticks; I used these mini craft sticks, but I think it would be better to use something larger so the writing is more visible.
- Toy vehicles; my kids love this wooden vehicle set!
- Post-It notes
We try to work with the materials that we already have at home, especially recycled cardboard!
How to make the cardboard parking lot
- Paint the cardboard black
- Paint white lines to divide the parking spots
- Paint cardboard strips or craft sticks to give the curb dimension
- Let dry
- Glue curbs onto parking lot
- Write Chinese vehicle names onto curb
How to use the parking lot craft for Chinese teaching
- Introduce the parking lot in a playful way when your child is engaging in regular play
- Show that the parking lot curbs have the name of the vehicles for “assigned parking”.
- With Post-It notes, label each vehicle with its name.
- Have your child match the vehicle to parking spot using Post-It note for assistance.
- When your child is ready, remove the Post-It note and see if he/she remembers where to park each vehicle.
- When your child has mastered the Chinese vehicle names, you can have a race to see how quickly he/she can put the vehicles in their assigned spot. My daughter had a lot of fun with me timing her and seeing if she could beat her own time!
Have you tried this Parking Lot Car Matching Activity?
If you try this Parking Lot Car Matching Activity, please let us know!
My kids like to see what other kids are doing for Chinese learning!
More educational transportation activities
- Craft Stick Airplane Word-Matching Puzzle
- Make-A-Sentence Post-It Note Train Literacy Activity!
- Writing 车 (chē) and 車 (chē) with Road Tape
- DIY Cardboard Car Ramp – Play While Learning Chinese Vehicle Names!
- Paper Airplanes: Reading Practice Games for Kids!
As always, please let me know if you have any questions, and I’ll try my best to answer them! Please leave a note in the comments!
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Happy learning, friends!