Nepal South Asia Culture Kit

South Asia
Culture Kit
1. Cotton Handloom Saris
Name in Nepali:
Phariyaas are hand-made colored fabric. They are to be wrapped around like a skirt from
underneath the waist. They differ from a sari in that there is no upper layer that comes out of
this phariyaa. They are usually worn with cholos.
2. Slate
Name in Nepali:
Silot is a blackboard that can fit in one’s hands and can be carried around. It is mostly used as a
subsitute for paper in classrooms in rural areas. A chalk is used to write on these silots.
3. Bamboo Flutes (4)
Name in Nepali:
Baasuri is made from bamboo and has 6-7 holes for fingers. This instrument has both cultural
and religious significance throughout South Asia. This is the same instrument that Lord Krishna
is shown playing in all of his depictions and during his lilas; therefore it has very significant
religious implications. Furthermore, it is the instruments used by herdsmen and shepherds in
pastoral environment.
Baasuri is used all over Nepal. It can be heard played and sold on the streets of Kathmandu or it
can be seen being used in a pastoral areas by farmers and shepherd to call back their animals or
simply for entertainment.
Wooden Newari Flutes (2)
Name in Nepali:
A Murali differs from baasuri in that it is made of wood and is more finely finished. This type of
flute exists primarily in Kathmandu and is played mostly by the Newari caste. It is one of the
figurines that represents the Newari culture and is used mostly for entertainment purposes.
5. Children’s Game (Tigers and Goats)
Name in Nepali:
Bagh-Chal is an original board game from Nepal. It is meant to be played by two players, and
each of them can either control the tigers or the goats (four tigers and twenty goats). In the
game, the tigers are trying to hunt the goats while the goats are trying to block the tiger’s path.
The game is won either when all four of the tigers are cornered by the goats or when the tiger
eats five goats.
Bagh-Chal is considered to be a very strategic game. It is played on a five by five point grid and
has lines across the board. The tigers and the goats are placed and can rest on the intersection
of these lines and can only move along the lines. The tigers eat the goats by jumping over them
and the goats block the tigers’ movement by blocking all their possible paths.
6. Children’s Songs Cassette
Name in Nepali:
(Geetko Chakka)
This is a three part series of songs for kids. It is used as a alphabet-learning tool for children.
Three old-style audio cassetes are included in the packs.
7. Book: On Top of the World
Name in Nepali:
This book describes the Sir Edmund Hillary’s and Tenzing Norkey’s journey to the Mount
Everest on May 29, 1953. It is written for audience in grades 3-6 and focuses on the final stages
of their successful journey to the top of the world. The book features both text and illustrations
and is also very brief to attract the younger audience. But it does convey the message about the
hardships that mountaineers have to face and talks about the type of support system they need
to be successful.
8. Dhaka Caps
Name in Nepali:
(Dhaka Topi)
Dhaka is a name for a type of fabric and topi means cap in Nepali. Therefore, Dhaka Topi is a
cap made out of Dhaka fabric. Dhaka topi is considered to be a big part of the Nepali culture
and is worn on a daily basis by important male figures of the country such as the politicians or
judges. It is considered to be a part of the national dress of Nepal and is often worn with daura
surwal and patuka, the official dress for men in Nepal.
9. Black Cap
Name in Nepali:
(Bhaad-gauley Topi)
Bhaad-gauley topi is a replica of the Dhaka Topi but made with a black fabric. It is made in
towns of Bhadgaon or Bhaktapur in Nepal. This type of cap is primarily worn by Newari males as
a part of their traditional clothes. The Topi can also be worn instead of a Dhaka Topi as part of
the national dress for Nepal.
10. Tamang Cap
Name in Nepali:
(Syode Topi)
Tamang caps are worn primarily by Tamangs who reside mostly in mountaineous region of
Nepal. Although Tamangs can also be found in other parts of South Asia, within Nepal, they are
primarily in northern and eastern regions. Tamang people have their own distinct traditions and
cultures, and part of their traditional clothing includes the Syode Topis. These caps are designed
to keep the head warm and come in various designs and colors. They can be worm by both
males and females.
11. Nepali National Flag
Name in Nepali:
(Nepali Zhanda)
The Nepali flag is the only flag in the world that is not rectangular in shape. The red part of the
flag comes from the color of rhododendron, the national flower of Nepal. The red color also
represents victory. The blue border around the flag represents the color of peace and also
symbolizes Nepal as being the birthplace of Buddha. The two triangles represents the Himalaya
mountains, as is specially significant due to Nepal being home to the highest peak in the world,
the Mount Everest. The two traingles also represents the two major religions within Nepal,
Hinduism and Buddhism. The flag also contains the moon and the sun, which represent the
hope that Nepal will last as long as these celestial bodies. Morever, the moon symbolizes the
calming and soothing nature of the Nepalis while the sun symbolizes their fierce resolve. The
moon can also be seen to represent the cooler weather in the Himalayas or the northern part
of Nepal while the sun represents the hot temperature in the southern, Terai region of the
12. Silk Kata (4)
Name in Nepali:
(Reshamko Khat)
These scarves are more well known as felicity scarves. It is used mostly by the Buddhist
community as a greeting. When given, it can also represent a congratulatory gesture. It is
meant to be a form of recognition or even respect.
13. Nepali Tea Pouch
Name in Nepali:
(Thailima Chiya)
Nepali tea is very similar to Darjeeling tea and can be seen as a cheap altenate to the Darjeeling
tea. In the lowlands of Nepal, tea is made with milk and spices. In the highlands, however, tea is
made with butter and sal to keep the drinker warm.
14. Prayer Flags
Name in Nepali:
These colorful rectangular flags can mostly be found in the Himlayan region of Nepal to send
blessings to the surrounding areas. They can also be seen used in bussinesses and homes for
the same purpose and to be used as a good luck. Each of the flags contain prayers and sutras on
them that is not particularly intended to be sent to the god. Instead these prayers are believed
to be blown by the wind to spread goodwill and compassion to the surrounding localities and
people. Since the flags are hung in open air and are sensitive to even the slightest movement of
the wind, it is believed that the winds are purified as well as they pass through the flags.
15. Newar Marionettes
Name in Nepali:
Two marionettes (male and female) dressed in versions of these Jyapu clothes: Jyapu people
are the traditional inhabitants of the Kathmandu valley; they are part of the larger Newar
people in Nepal, who are famous for populating the larger valleys and making them centers of
intense trade and agriculture. Newar merchants and crafts people are famous for their gold,
silver and bronze work—in jewelry and religious statutes; Jyapu farmers are famous for their
agricultural productivity.
16. 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Grade Textbooks
Name in Nepali:
(Schoolko Kitab)
The books depicted are the Social Studies, Math, and Nepali books for grades 1-3. These books
are used throughout the public schools in Nepal whereas the private schools have their set of
different books.
17. Book: Hero of the Land of Snow
Name in Nepali:
This book features the story about Tibetan hero Gesar who was destined to be the King of Ling.
It is a historic Tibetan epic and is meant to be read by all audiences. However, the colorful
drawing alongside the text is a great attention seeker for the younger audience as is the
message that the book sends.
18. Nepal Picture Book
Name in Nepali:
(Photoko Kitab)
This picture book of Nepal shows the picture along with detailed descriptions of many aspects
of life in Nepal. The main focus is on the various cultures and traditions of Nepal along with the
famous landmarks and locations that are present in Nepal.
19. Assorted Post Cards
This set of postcards shows the life and some of the hardships in Nepal. Farmers as well as
merchants are shown in two different postcards on the right hand side of the picture above. On
the top left corner, we can see the methods of cooking in rural areas of Nepal. On the bottom
left hand corner, the ‘Faces of Kathmandu’ are shown.
20. Folktales from Nepali
Name in Nepali:
(Nepalko Lok Katha)
This book features Nepali folktales. Many of the stories are the ones told to children in their
young age. The book features many short stories, all written in English.
21. Ink Pad and Double Dorje Stamp
Name in Nepali:
(Chapdani ra Masi)
This was the stamp and ink that was previously used in Nepal to stamp the passports of those
coming into Nepal. The double dorje which is the symbol on the stamp symbolizes love and
22. Forehead Stickers
Name in Nepali:
Tika is put on the forehead of women between the eyebrows. This tika is partly worn as a sign of
religion and partly as a sign of beauty mark. The real significance of the tika is as a third eye and it is
believed that the area between the eyebrows is where our sixth sense is located and the gateway to our
inner soul. Therefore, putting the tika in between the eyebrows strengthens one’s concentration and
also protects our soul from the devil.
23. Bracelet in Pouch
Name in Nepali:
This simple bracelet is a form of jewelry mostly for young and unmarried girls in Nepal. The married
women are required to wear the glass bangles. These type of bracelet are seen less often and usually
only on the wrists of unmarried women.
24. 1997 Calendar
Name in Nepali:
(Bhitte Patro)
This is the wall calendar that is used almost in every household in Nepal. Nepal follows a
different calendar system than the Anno Domino (AD) calendar system used in the majority of
the world. The calendar system that Nepal follows is knows as B.S. or Bikram Sambhat which
comes from emperor Vikramaditya in 56 BC. BS is the official calendar system in Nepal, and is
also associated with different months and different years completely (the year now in Nepal is
2069 BS). To go from Nepali date to English date, subract 56 years, 8 months, and 15 days.
25. Small Posters (2)
Two small posters featuring the scenic beauty of Nepal. The first poster shows the Himalayan
rage with Mount Everest in the center, specifying ‘Top of the World’. The second poster shows
the capital of Nepal, Kathmandu valley, with the backdrop of the Ganesh Himal (or Mt. Ganesh)
beyond the hills.
26. Teacher’s Manual: “An Imaginery Trip to Nepal”
This binder contains a sheet on basic Nepali language and greetings, along with a recipe for a
vegetable dish, a short story and large laminated sheets of information about various groups of
people, geography and history of Nepal.
27. VHS: Nepal – Where the Legends Live
This VHS tape presents a basic, visual guide to Nepal. It is a short film (20 mins long) and follows
around Australians as they see the Nepalese legends.
28. Book: Nepal – Insight Guide
This book features a full ‘Insight Guide’ to Nepal with full page pictures on almost every page. It
also contains detailed description that goes along with each of the pictures.
29. Hair Braid
Name in Nepali:
This is an ornament for girls while braiding their hair. The dhago goes along with the braided
hair and it is used to decorate and lengthen the girls’ hair. At the end of the dhago are various
ornaments which decorate the hair. The dhagos are now primarily used in religious festivities
(such as Teej which is a fasting festival for women) and with red saris.
30. Hand Plow
Name in Nepali:
This type of handplow is a very essential farming tool in Nepal. The actual plow is held in plac by
the wooden shaft that increases in size and the plow catches on at the bigger side of wooden
rod. Therefore, the handplow is adjustable as to where the plower actually goes. When in use,
the wooden shaft that is not covered by the plow is held by both hands and the plow is pulled
towards the farmer, almost in between the legs.
31. Brass Cups (2)
Name in Nepali:
These are the type of drinking glasses that are very common in Nepal. They are especially
favorite for drinking hot liquids (such as tea) and tend to keep the liquids warmer for a longer
period of time.
32. Brass Saucepan
Name in Nepali:
This tapkey, or a saucepan with handle, is made of brass and can be found in all the kitchens in
Nepal. It is used primarily to make dal and other curried vegetables.
33. Brass Plates (2)
Name in Nepali:
Types of plates used in Nepal which are made out of brass (like many of the other utensils).
These are used for serving dishes as a well as eating plates.
34. Lunch Box
Name in Nepali:
Tiphin is made of round stainless steel containers with lid that can be stacked together. These
come in various sizes, but the normal ones contain either two or three of the stainless steel
containers. School children can be seen using this tiphin to carry their lunches.
Name in Nepali:
Namlo features a plaited rope along with a flat surface that is decorated in many ways (in pink
and blue in this case). Namlo is used to carry baskets on the back by tying the baskets with the
plaited ropes and by placing the flat section on the back of your head. This method of carrying
baskets (dokos) utilizes one’s spine rather than the shoulders (as in regular backpacks) to carry
the load.
36. Spatula
Name in Nepali:
Panyau is a flat, round spatula which is made out of brass. It is used as a stirring device and also
used to service rice.
37. Silver Offering Plate
Name in Nepali:
Pujathali is used to carry offerings, such as flowers and incense, to the puja kotha (room
dedicated in each house as a worship room) and even to the temple. Often times these plates
are made of silver as it is considered to be the purest of the materials.
38. Coarse Cotton Vest
Name in Nepali:
Istakot is the type of vest worn by boys over their other clothing. It is part of the national dress
for the men in Nepal and is often worn above daura surwal (the national dress for men in
39. Carrying Basket
Name in Nepali:
Dalo is the type of carrying basket that is used in rural areas. Namlo is used to carry these
baskets on the head. They can be used to carry farming materials and farming products or any
other type of weight.
40. Grain Holding Basket
Special type of baskets that are made by the Sherpas in the highlands of Nepal. These baskets
are made from bamboo and are used to grains or any small objects.
41. Boy’s Long Shirt (Green)
Name in Nepali:
Daura is the boy’s shirt which is part of the national dress for men in Nepal. It is worn by first
tying the two inside ties and then the two outside ties. It can be made of woolen or cotton
fabrics depending on the cool or the warm weather. It is worn mostly by politicians and other
important figures in the nation at day-to-day basis.
42. Boy’s Long Shirt/Coat (Black)
Name in Nepali:
Chuba is the type of coat/shirt worn by boys and men in the highlands of Nepal (Sherpas and
Tibetans). They are designed to keep the person warm and comfortable.
43. Girl’s Long Shirt/Coat (Brown)
Name in Nepali:
Bakhu is the type of coat worn by females in the highland of Nepal (mostly Sherpas and
Tibetans). They are meant to keep the wearer warm and comfortable.
44. Boy’s Outfits (4 Sets – 3 White, 1 Grey, 1 Tan)
Name in Nepali:
(Daura Suruwal)
This is the national dress for male in Nepal. The outfit consists of a long shirt which has ties both on the
inside and the outside to tie it. This is known as the daura part of the oufit. The pants are called suruwal
and it is also tied on the waist using the tie that comes as a part of it. This outfit is only worn by
politicans and other important figures in the office area. It can also be seen being worn by boys in the
mid-hills and low mountains.
45.Boy’s Long Shirt with Vest (Blue)
Name in Nepali:
(Daura and Istakot)
A more decorated version of daura (boy’s shirt) paired along with an istakot (a vest). The
decorared daura makes this combination less formal and is typically not worn in an office
environment. However, it can be seen being worn by males in the mid and low mountain areas.
46. Boy’s Outfit with Vest (Red)
Name in Nepali:
(Daura-Suruwal and Istakot)
This outfit shows the full Nepali national dress for men (minus the Dhaka topi). The decorations
on both the daura-suruwal as well as the istakot makes this combination very informal. Formal
versions of this outfit would feature a plain lighter color of daura-suruwal paired with a plain,
darker colored isakot with a decorated dhaka topi.
47.Red and Black Vest (Bhutanese)
Name in Nepali:
Istakot is the vest that is worn by boys and men over their clothing (typically over daurasuruwal). This particular istakot is actually made from wool to keep the person warm. This
originated in Bhutan which is located on the North-East side of Nepal.
48. Girl’s Outfit: Rose Lined Cotton Top and Pants with Red Thin Cotton
Name in Nepali:
(Kurtha and Khasto)
This type of outfit is worn by girls in the mid and low mountainous regions. It is more popular
for the younger girls to wear this rather than the older girls as they tend to wear phariyaas
(skirts) and saris more often.
49. Highland Girl’s Outfit including Jumper, Apron, and Cream Silk Blouse
Name in Nepali:
This type of outfit is typically worn by girls in the high mountainous region. The outfit consists
of a silk blouse which is worn underneath bakhu (the jumper). The outfit also consists of a
decorated apron which is worn outside the bakhu.
50. Girl’s Traditional Blouses (3)
Name in Nepali:
These are the typical girl’s blouses that can be worn over phariyaas or over cholis. Younger girls
also wear the cholis with a matching suruwal (pants). These cholis can come in different
thickness, depending on the weather and the location. They can also be worn underneath
school uniform or other clothing to layer the clothing and avoid cold weather.
51. Red Petticoat
Name in Nepali:
Petikots are typically worn by girls under their clothing to keep warm and to provide extra
layers. They are always worn underneath saris but can also be worn under skirts.
52. Boy’s Outfit with Waistband Cloth
Name in Nepali:
Along with the daura and the suruwal, this outfit also features a waistband cloth which is worn
on the waist above the daura and suruwal. This particular outfit is also padded which is meant
to be worn in the cold season or in mountaineous locations.
53. White Cotton Shawl
Name in Nepali:
This is a type of cotton typically worn by women over their other clothing. It covers up the
entire top half of the body. It can be wrapped around the head and hands to keep warm.
54. Thin Cotton Waistband
Name in Nepali:
This over-clothing patuka can be worn both by males and females. Males typically wear it over
daura-suruwal while females wear it over their choli-phariyaa. It is meant to keep the outfit in
place and also as a decorative touch.
55. Bangles
Name in Nepali:
Churas are bangles made out of glass or plastic which come in various sizes and colors. They are
typically worn by married woman on a day-to-bay basis along with saris. However, on special
occasions such as during festivals or parties, they can be seen on wrists of girls of different ages.
56. “Flower” Earrings
Name in Nepali:
These earrings are round in shape and pounded into a rose-like shape. They are either made
out of real gold and rubies or painted the golden yellow color with colorful stones. Unlike
regular earrings which are worn on the earlobes, Dhungris are worn right in the middle of the
main part of the ear.
57. Combs (2)
Name in Nepali:
These combs are special combs made out of bamboo which are held together using the white
threads. These are especially used to comb out lice.
58. Necklace
Name in Nepali:
(Pothe Mala)
This special type of necklace is made of pothe (small seed beeds). Pothe malas are worn by all
married women in Nepal although they tend to be a simple, one layer and longer version of the
necklace without any ornament in between. This particular type of pothe mala which contains
many layers of a single pothe mala also has a single beaten cylinder as an ornament in the
middle of the necklace. This type of necklaces are worn during parties and formal events.
59. Miniature Open-Weave Carrying Basket
Name in Nepali:
This is a miniature version of the large carrying baskets known as dalo. Dalos are used to carry
objects like fodder and water jugs whereas the tight-weave of these baskets are used to carry
grains and crops.
60. Small Wooden Jug with Lid
This is a miniature version of the kind of jug in which yogurt is made. After the cattle are milked,
their milk is turned into yogurt using this jug. Later, the yogurt can also be churned into butter.
61. Mask of Sun God and Fierce Protector God
Name in Nepali:
(Surya ra Bhairav)
These masks are used during religious festivals while performing religious dances. Surya God
(Sun God) represents the sun and is an important figure for farmers and for people in
agriculture. Bhairav (Fierve Protector God) can be seen in many different avatars and he
protects temples, houses, and the Nepali way of life.