Chinese culture

By Lily

Building the candian pacific railroad

The CP rail

The CP railroad was started on February 16 1881. The chinese built the CP rail.

Canada needed a railway that stretched from port moody to eagle Pass, near Revelstoke, British Columbia. It was very mountainous and rocky, the chinese cleared and graded the roadbed. There were many landslides and dynamite explosions that killed many workers. The chinese played a big role in building the railroad and they were paid $1.00 or $2.50 a day, it was not the worst amount of money but the chinese workers had to buy food, pay for transportation to the work sites, mail, and medical care. All this left barely enough money to send home. If a worker died his family will probably never know. The workers lived in poor conditions, often living tents or boxcars. They had to cook their own food over open fire, the workers had a diet of rice, dried salmon and tea. Because they could not afford fresh fruit and vegetables they sometimes died from diseases. No Vitamins and poor living conditions meant the workers often fell ill, they used herbs to cure themselves because they didn't have any medicine.

In the cold winters in BC often the only thing to keep them warm were open fires. When the workers had moved farther away from their camp they would take down their tents and walk to the next campsite, sometimes they would have to carry their belongings for 40 Kilometers. In 1923 Canada imposed a suspension of Chinese immigration but not before employing approximately 15,000 Chinese to complete the Canadian Pacific Railway

Chinese traditions

1. Traditional guardian lions, statues of guardian lions have stood in front of temples, government offices and homes of the rich since 2006 BC. It is believed they have protective powers. The lions are always found in pairs (Yin and Yang). The male lion has its right front paw on a ball representing universal power and the female has her paw over a cub that is on its back, representing the life cycle. The lions are traditionally carved from stone such as marble and granite

2. The lion dance is one of the most famous chinese traditions, they are held during festivals, chinese new year and the opening of new businesses and buildings. The dance is believed to bring good luck and wealth and drive away evil. The dance begins with the lion waking up and opening his eyes. Lettuce, celery and money are hung on a doorway which representants success. The lion dance usually has 2 lions, a drummer and a cymbal player. The better the dancers the more money they earn,

traditional chinese medicines

Chinese medicine

Traditional chinese medicine has been used to treat disease and illness for more than 2,500 years it includes herbal medicine, acupuncture, massage and exercise


Acupuncture involves pricking the skin with needles to help with pain and mental and physical conditions. Chinese doctors insert very thin needles into the skin to restore the energy flow (qi) through the patient's body

Herbal medicine

Chinese doctors have found thousands of plants and herbs that can help treat disease and illness they mix cold and hot herbs to make a broth which the patient drinks 2 or 3 times a day. They use roots, leaves, flowers ,seeds, grass and vines. The mixing of the herbs has to be done very carefully by a professional doctor because they are very powerful ( the herbs)

chinese superstitions

1. The chinese believe that if a dog howls for a few hours at night, someone has died

2. Another superstition is that if you clip your toenails or fingernails at night ghosts will appear.

3. Superstitious Chinese people believe if you sweep your house during Chinese New Year you risk sweeping away good luck .


The Chinese Zodiac is a cycle of twelve years and twelve animals that repeats itself. The animals are: rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog and pig. It is believed that if your birth year is the same as the lunar animal you will offend the God Of Age and bad luck will find you. The twelve animals were chosen carefully as they are either closely related to chinese lives or are thought to bring good luck. Each animal is either yin or yang depending on how many claws, toes, or hooves it has. The animals have different personalities, strengths and weaknesses.

Chinese sports

Stilt Racing

Stilt Racing is a very serious sport in china going back thousands of years, competitors are on 3 foot stilts made of 2 bamboo sticks tied to their feet. It was inspired by people who lived on the Liao river and would get around on stilts after the river flooded the town.

Bamboo Kayaking

Bamboo Kayaking is a fun and exciting sport to watch. Competitors dress up in traditional clothing and use 1 stick of bamboo as an oar and another to balance on. They have to have great balance to compete.

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