On Friday 22 July through to Wednesday 27 July, Fahan School Year 6 students hosted 21 girls from Tokyo Jogakkan School in Japan.
Arriving on Friday, the Japanese students along with their Principal and teachers were officially welcomed by Fahan staff and students at an assembly in the TM Hall. During this special welcome, Fahan School Year 6 students introduced themselves in Japanese and also sang a Japanese pop song for the visitors as well as presenting special gifts to the visiting students. Jogakkan students then gave personal introductions in English and presented their names in Chinese symbols explaining the meaning behind them. Jogakkan students then spoke about their school and popular Japanese culture before presenting gifts to the School.
Fahan School Japanese and ESL Teacher, Clare Enright believes the relationship with Tokyo Jogakkan Exchange brings numerous benefits to both Fahan School and Jogakkan students. “It's such a unique experience for the Year 6 Girls to be treated to such a hands-on cultural experience. It's the closest we can get to Japanese culture without leaving the country and we are so lucky to have such generous friends in our Sister School relationship with Tokyo Jogakkan."
Over the course of the week, Fahan School and Jogakkan students participated in cultural exchanges including Kimono dressing, Japanese dancing, a Tea Ceremony, calligraphy and a trip to the Bonorong Wildlife Park. The Jogakkan Primary School girls concluded their stay in Tasmania with a special farewell BBQ and certificate presentation by Fahan Principal, Tony Freeman.
“It has been wonderful to see such strong relationships develop among the girls in such a short time. The manner in which they were able to inform each other of their different cultures was amazing,” said Tony Freeman.
The following are some thoughts from Year 6 girls:
“I have enjoyed spending time with the TJK girls. We dressed up in kimonos and learnt how to do a Tea Ceremony and try green tea. I also enjoyed writing in Japanese and learning how to use chop sticks. It was awesome meeting them. I had a great time!” said Samantha Tomes-Park.
“I really liked dressing up in kimonos and learning the dance was great fun. I really enjoyed spending time with the TJK girls. Even though it was a small amount of time I will never forget this experience. I will miss them all a lot,” said Stella Bale.
“I loved having the TJK girls here I really enjoyed learning about their culture. I hope we can stay in touch,” said Grace Smyth.
“I really enjoyed experiencing a different culture. I learnt more Japanese and discovered the magic of origami. It was great trying Japanese food and watching my Japanese exchange student (Yukine ) try Australian food. We had a blast that weekend!” said Isla Wilson.