Enter a magical place where modern day life in Viet Nam is interwoven with folktales passed down through generations of families.
Five “folktale theaters” serve as entry points for your journey; introducing visitors to daily experiences and the culture of the Vietnamese people. The folktales selected highlight the values and traditions of the Vietnamese people and the origins, geography and celebrations of Viet Nam. The folktales include:
The Story of One Hundred Eggs
The Legend of the Rice Cakes
The Story of the Betel and Areca Nut
The Legend of Chu Cuoi
An Tiem and the Watermelons
The facades of the theatres represent distinct geographic regions of Viet Nam. In one, visitors explore what life is like in rural areas of Viet Nam. In another, visitors experience the “streets” of a city and take part in preparations for Tet Trung Thu – the Mid-Autumn Lantern Festival. In a third, visitors may enter a houseboat and house like those found in Viet Nam’s urban and riverside regions and take part in preparations for Tet Nguyen Dan—the Lunar New Year Festival.
Visitors will have the opportunity to engage in hands-on activities that bring Vietnamese culture to life and explore the traits that they share with Vietnamese children and those that might be unique to this culture. During their visit, children will:
Discover the meanings of various Vietnamese names and choose one for themselves.
Try their hand at using chopsticks while learning about traditional Vietnamese food.
Create Zodiac Rubbingsusing replicas of traditional Vietnamese wood blocks.
Test their knowledge of Viet Nam’s geography, history and customs at the Info Café, a video kiosk placed in a traditional café setting.
Long Island Children’s Museum has planned a variety of themed activities and workshops to complement the key concepts introduced in this cultural exhibit. Among the special programs planned are:
One Hundred Eggs—Sept. 29, 30 and Oct. 8
The Pink Lotus—Nov. 20 and Dec. 3
LICM will recreate the Mid-Autumn Children’s Festival for museum visitors on November 5–6.
Throughout the weekend, visitors will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in traditional activities as they taste Vietnamese treats, craft lion masks and lanterns for a festival parade and view a new theatrical production, “Dragons & Fairies,” by acclaimed Vietnamese playwright Nguyen thi Minh Ngoc. Premiering at LICM, the play presents the five folktales that are central to the exhibit.
Festival activities are free with museum admission; tickets for the theater performance are required and are available on a first-come, first-served basis at the box office. The Festival is funded by a grant from the New York Council for the Humanities and with the support of the New York Vietnamese School and the Saigon Children’s Charity (USA).
Community Gallery and KaleidoZone My Country, My Village, My Story
Artwork by the Children from The Thang Long School in Viet Nam. Through January 8, 2012
Stop by and view original paintings and photographs created by students from The Thang Long School in Viet Nam. The students created the pieces using their everyday life as inspiration. The paintings and photographs in this exhibit may be purchased; proceeds will benefit SCC's children's programs.
Dragons & Fairies: Exploring Viet Nam Through Folktales is presented by the Freeman Foundation Asian Exhibit Initiative, administered by the Association of Children’s Museum and created by The Children’s Museum of Houston. Local exhibit support is provided by Astoria Federal Savings.
The Freeman Foundation is a private grant-making foundation based in Vermont. It was established in 1992 to support greater understanding between Asia and the United States.
The Association of Children’s Museums (ACM)
is the professional service organization that endeavors to expand the capacity and further the vision of children’s museums around the world. ACM’s vision is to bring children and families together in a new kind of Town Square where play inspires lifelong learning. Founded in 1962 as a support group for directors, ACM has broadened its services and purpose as an international association with over 400 members.