A month passed since the new semester started in April, and our new students seem to be getting used to life in Japan.
On May 2nd, we held the springs semester orienteering event as part of our social studies field trip program. Tokyo Galaxy Japanese Language School is located in an area with many popular places of interest. At this event, students took a walk around the school with their classmates and experienced Japanese culture while engaging in communication activities in Japanese.
Before the orienteering event, there was a class activity in which Advanced Class students delivered presentations about the places to explore to the Basic and the Intermediate-first half Class students in Japanese. They explained the history, characteristics, and famous foods of locations such as Nihonbashi, Tsukishima, Ningyocho, Monzen-Nakacho, and Tsukiji.
It is not easy to explain history and culture in Japanese, but the Advanced Class students achieved the task in fluent Japanese and with easy-to-understand gestures. Those who participated in the orienteering event were able to deepen their understanding based on this prior learning activity by actually visiting the places they have heard about.
The orienteering event was not just walking around; various tasks were included in the program, such as taking pictures holding the assigned pose at the historical site and writing a senryu (short poem) associated with the places they have visited. The event was an opportunity to have a conversation with classmates that they didn’t have a chance to talk with in the classroom, and to deepen exchanges with their friends while practicing their Japanese.