Learn to Read and Write Chinese Character 子 with Seeds (Music VIDEO)

Teaching Chinese characters in real life context is the best way to learn and understand new words. When my daughter was 3, she learned to read and write Chinese character 子 with real seeds. However, I think this activity would be effective for a wide age range, and I hope it can help your child, too!

At the end of the post, I have included a multilingual music video about seeds that would make a fun supplement to learning this word!

Learn to Read and Write Chinese Character 子 with Seeds

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Common Chinese words with 子

子 is the same in simplified and traditional Chinese!

We used various seeds to learn the following important words with Chinese character 子:

  • 种子 / 種子 (Zhǒngzi / seed)
  • 孩子 (Háizi / child)
  • 儿子 / 兒子 (Érzi / son)
  • 孙子 / 孫子 (Sūnzi / grandson)

Since I’m learning Chinese with my children, I included Pinyin and English translations above for my own review. I hope they can also help other parents who are learning Chinese with their children!

I love the fact that the Chinese word for child and seeds are the same 子. Children are truly seeds that need nourishment and care for growth!

Pepper seeds fine motor skills activity for young children - Montessori inspired activity

Learn Chinese Character 子 with Seeds

If your child liked the writing-with-food activity in yesterday’s post, he or she will like this 子 (zǐ) activity!

You can use any seed with this activity, such as watermelon seeds, apple seeds, and orange seeds.

We usually have bell peppers in our fridge, and picking off the pepper seeds is a sensory activity that keeps her focused while improving fine motor skills!

If you aren’t fond of picking seeds out of fresh fruit and vegetables, see if your kitchen pantry has sunflower seeds, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, or sesame seeds!

Chinese Character 子 Seed Activity: What you need

  1. Seeds
  2. Magnifying glass
  3. Paper or card stock
  4. Laminator and laminating pouches (consider for durability but skip if avoiding plastic due to environmental concerns)
  5. block Chinese character template (free download)
Learn to Write Chinese Character 子 with Seeds

Chinese 子 Character Seed Activity: What to do

  1. Put seeds in bowl
  2. Put seeds inside block character
  3. Inspect seeds under magnifying glass
  4. Count and sort seeds by color, shape, and size!
Learn to Write Chinese Character 子 with Seeds

Tips for teaching Chinese character 子

If your child has trouble memorizing Chinese characters, don’t use the block character template.

Instead, show them the solid Chinese character 子 so that they get more visual input.

The block character only shows the outline of the Chinese character, which might not be enough visual input for some students.

Related: Pretend Play Food {Free Printable in English, Chinese, and Korean}

Strengthening fine motor skills while learning to write Chinese Character 子

My daughter has done this seed activity numerous times!!!

Sensory play is always a big hit. When I need to prepare dinner or take care of baby brother, this fine motor activity entertains her and stretches out her attention span.

Even though she’s not using a pencil and paper, she’s improving pre-writing skills. When she picking up the seeds, she’s using the same muscles involved in pencil grip.

To teach stroke order, you can also have your child arrange the seeds on the Chinese character in the correct order.

Exploring seeds with a magnifying glass

After writing the Chinese character 子 with the seeds, another fun idea is to compare a variety of seeds and look at it closely under a magnifying glass.

As you can see, the meaning of Chinese character 子 will be easily remembered through this multi-sensory activity.

Pepper seeds mixed with chia seeds under magnifying glass

An open-ended Chinese activity such as this has the potential for many learning opportunities beyond the initial plan!

Apple Tree, Orangier, 樱桃树: Ginalina trilingual music video

A lovely Chalk Academy reader shared this adorable trilingual song by Ginalina about fruit seeds!

Check out the music video! Printable in English, French, and Chinese/Pinyin are below!

Apple Tree, Orangier, 樱桃树 Lyrics

I’m an apple, an apple seed

I’ll grow up if you water me

Apple apple apple seed

I will be a tree

Je suis une graine, une graine d’orange (I am an orange seed)

Je vais pousser avec de l’eau (I’ll grow up if you water me)

Graine, graine, graine d’orange (Orange, orange, orange seed)

Je serai un orangier (I will be an orange tree)

我是一个樱桃子 / 我是一個櫻桃子 (Wǒ shì yīgè yīngtáo zi / I am a cherry seed)

加加水,我会长大 / 加加水,我會長大 (Jiājiā shuǐ, wǒ huì zhǎng dà / I’ll grow up if you water me)

樱桃,樱桃,樱桃子 / 櫻桃,櫻桃,櫻桃子 (Yīngtáo, yīngtáo, yīngtáozǐ / Cherry, cherry, cherry seed)

我会变成树 / 我會變成樹 (Wǒ huì biàn chéng shù / I will be a tree)

I’m an apple, an apple seed

I’ll grow up if you water me

Apple apple apple seed

I will be a tree

Apple apple apple seed

I will be a tree

Download Apple Tree, Orangier, 樱桃树 Lyrics

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Click here to download Apple Tree, Orangier, 樱桃树 pdf file.

Have you tried teaching Chinese character 子 with seeds?

If you try this activity, let us know! We love to hear about how other families are learning Chinese!


Happy learning, friends!

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