Japanese School in Japan,Fukuoka - NILS

School Activity Report

Dazaifu

Our students enjoyed the shrine area. Some asked the staff of the shrine to write the memory on a book with brush. He took some photos while the staff was writing.
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There is a pond with the pedestrian bridge over it. It was a hot summer day, but they looked happy to be over the water.
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There is another atraction close to the shrine. You can go to the Kyushu Kokuritsu Hakubutsukan meaning Kyushu National Museum through a tunnel from the shrine. There are a lot of historical things you can see. At the entrance hall, huge decorated portable shrine called Yamakasa is displayed. A lot of different designed Yamakasa are carried at a festival in July.
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You can visit these historical enjoyable places in Dazaifu.
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Here is another comment from our student;
“Thank you for organising the trip to Dazaifu. I enjoyed going to Tenmangu shrine and visiting Kyushu National museum. We also got to try the famous umegae mochi (typical ricecake in Dazaifu) and matcha (Green tea) – it was delicious!

It was a great outing ?”

Dazaifu Shrine

Dazaifu is one of the well-known shrines in Japan. About 7 million people visit this place in a year. Students often visit here for their entrance exams to academic institutions such as high school, university, college, etc. The reason why so many students come to Dazaifu shrine is the study of God has been there. On the way to the shrine, a gate, paths, bridges, and the main gate welcome visiters.

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Alongside the paths are the shops, restaurants, and cafeterias, and so on. The people who visit this place can enjoy souvenirs, gifts, foods, or even charms for many things!

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After the paths and the bridges, you go through the final gate to the main shrine.

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Finally, you pray for your future (esapecially for the study here), and draw an oracle.

Anyway, here is an impressions from our student;

“Our teacher brought us all out to a famous shrine/ temple in Fukuoka called ‘Dazaifu’. We get to enjoy the local delicacy of dazaifu called ume mochi. It is a dessert made from Mochi and filled with azuki. We also went to the Kyushu National Musuem. Overall it was a good experience for me!”

Writing Japanese with a brush!

One of the most popular Japanese culture is the calligraphy. All our students are interested in it and excited to write (maybe to draw for them) Japanese language with a brush. After practicing basic lines, they began to write Kanji.

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Then, some of them started to try much more difficult Kanji. One wrote a kanji which even we Japanese people don’t write in daily life. You can choose one(s) you would like to write, and the teacher gives them examples. They are also interested in writeing their names in Japanese at the corner of the paper.

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Finnally, they finished writing on a special paper and we put them on the wall. They keep the paper for themselves.
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A student kindly gave us a comment for this activity;

“I really enjoyed this calligraphy activity!! It was really fun and the video was really good at explaining all the essentials of calligraphy. It would’ve been better if we paused after each stroke to practice writing different strokes but I was still able to write the character I wanted to write. I think everyone should try calligraphy because it not only helps with improving your handwriting but also is a nice, calming activity. Moreover, you can pretty much do calligraphy anywhere as long as you have some paper, ink, and a brush!”

A trip to Yanagawa

We visited Yanagawa this time. This city is well-known with a lot of cannals. You can get on a boat and enjoy the changing scenes from the water.

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We have extreme hot days every day this summer. Our students found an ice cream shop. They tried green tea ice cream and they enjoyed the taste. When we are on the boat, we felt the time passing slowly and the environment relaxing. There are some cafes and restaurants. So we went into one of them and ate the famous grilled-eel (the eel called ‘Unagi’ in Japanese.) with thw special source.

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All of us were refreshed for the next day.

Theis is the impression of Yanagawa trip by our student.

“The trip to Yanagawa was a beautiful experience with my classmate and my teacher. We took a river cruise down the famous yanagawa river to enjoy the scenary yanagawa has to offer. We even got to enjoy buying ice cream from a stall right beside the river. Then we went for a course dinner in a restaurant. We got to have a taste of the famous cuisine in Yanagawa which is the grilled unagi.

Overall, it was a really good experience.”

Yusentei

We visited a Japanese traditional house called ‘Yusen-tei.’ This is a pure old house with a huge Japanese style garden. At the entrance gate, a couple with traditional clothes welcomed us. The pond is also big and there are some Koi carps swimming in the water. You are allowed to feed them.

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You are served typical Japanese green tea and you can learn how to drink in a formal way. This is called ‘Sa-doh’. ‘sa’means tea and ‘doh’ means the way which is also used in some Japanese sports such as ‘Ju-doh’ and ‘Ken-doh’. So the way of specialist in each category. You have an opportunity to experience the way of traditional tea drink in formal style.


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The house is extended over the pond so that you can enjoy watching the gerden and the pond together as if you are in the air.
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Comments from our students:
“The Japanese Beautiful Garden excursion showed me a peaceful and serene side of Fukuoka. Our teacher got us 2 packs of fish food to feed the Koi fishes in the ponds in the park. Then, we had a traditional tea experience where we had to sit in a traditional Japanese way and enjoyed green tea with sweets.”

“The garden that we visited was truly a beautiful place. After seeing the bustling parts of Fukuoka it was nice to see such a quiet place filled with nature. I especially enjoyed drinking tea with everyone and looking out over the koi pond.”

A Summer Festival

Summer is the season of festivals in Japan. One of the big events is the firework shows. You can enjoy watching (or feeling) ones here and there. We joined the one at Ohori Park in Fukuoka City. Before we visit the park, our students changed their clothes to Japanese traditional ones called, “Yukata” which is especially used in summer and much lighter than the “Kimono”. Girls also can change their hair-style in Japanese one.

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They are getting to be ready to go out to the city!
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They were very happy to wear Yukata, so whereever we go, we took some photos such as alongside the road, at a train station, and in the undergraound shopping area.

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When the evening was coming, there were a lot of stores mainly selling typical festival food.
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Finally, the fireworks opened their flowers in the dark sky.
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Here are comments from other students;

“You cannot say you’ve been to Japan in summer if you never been to a fireworks display in Japan. It was such a great experience: you get to enjoy Japanese street foods while watching spectacularly beautiful fireworks. Can summer ever be better than that?? The fireworks display at Oohori park lasted an entire hour and a half. Every part of the show was grand and exciting even though the show was really long. The fireworks are so big that you think they would actually hit you.

It was especially fun to attend the fireworks show dressed in yukata because you really feel like you’re getting the full experience. You shouldn’t be embarrassed because a lot of other people are also dressed in yukata. Furthermore, it’s a great photo-taking opportunity because the yukatas definitely make you 100 times more good-looking than you already are!

Although it was really hot and the subway was really crowded, I would definitely attend the fireworks display every year if I happen to be in Fukuoka in August!!”

“The fireworks was my highlight for the week. I havent seen a fireworks display like that in such a long time. The wearing of the Yukawa was a first for me and it was a great experience. It was an unforgettable experience. I will carry this experience with me for the rest of my life. I would like to thank NILS staff and all the sensei for making this possible. What a wonderful experience.”

A Summer Festival

Summer is the season of festivals in Japan. One of the big events is the firework shows. You can enjoy watching (or feeling) ones here and there. We joined the one at Ohori Park in Fukuoka City. Before we visit the park, our students changed their clothes to Japanese traditional ones called, “Yukata” which is especially used in summer and much lighter than the “Kimono”. Girls also can change their hair-style in Japanese style.
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Now, we are ready to go out to the city!
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They were very happy to wear Yukata, so whereever we go, we took some photos such as alongside the road, at a train station, and in the undergraound shopping area.

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When the evening was coming, there were a lot of stores mainly selling typical festival food.
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Finally, the fireworks opened their flowers in the dark sky.
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Here are comments from our students.;
“Going to see fireworks in Ohori park with the school was an amazing and unique experience. It was especially interesting to see how a traditional yukata is put on and how to walk in it. I had no idea that the fireworks would be as big as they were and had a lot of fun with the whole experience.”

“There were nearly half a million people in attendance I have never seen that many people in one spot before. The fireworks started at 8:00 and lasted until 9:30 the fireworks were truly amazing. There were lots of food and drink stalls selling delicious foods. I got to wear a yukata and geta a yukata is a traditional Japanese garment a casual summer kimono and geta are a kind of wooden sandal. I had a great time and would love to do it again next year.”

Making sweets

Our students visited ‘the Kingdom of Kompeitoh.’

Kompeitoh is a colorful sugar candy which was imported from Portugal before the Edo era. Many Japanese children like it because it is sweet, tiny, and colourful!

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In this kingdom, you can make your own Kompeitoh.
First, you learn how to make it.

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Then, you can start making it. It is not so difficult to make it for visitors.
The shape of Kompeitoh is already there in sugar white. You put them in the machine which is rolling slowly. You have a choice of colour. While the machine is rolling, you stir the Konpeitoh and add the colour with a hose like the one from the fire engine.

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When the candy gets enough colour, that’s it! You can enjoy eating the Konpeitoh you’ve just made.

Here is a comment from our students;

“I’ve always thought Konpeito is a candy made by the Japanese but I learned today that it was actually made by the Portuguese. It was really fun to learn about the procedures of making Konpeito. I always wondered how the candy becomes so prickly and was very surprised to learn how long it takes to make this seemingly simple candy. I definitely think everyone should come to the konpeito museum because you not only learn about the history of the candy, but also can buy different flavored konpeito that you can’t buy anywhere else.”

Making Food Display Samples

We have more students joined our course this time. We visited a place where you can make typical Japanese Food Display Samples. Here is the comment from one of our students.

Japan is known for fooling people with the amazingly realistic and beautiful food samples. This food sample activity is a must-do when in Japan. The classroom is full of different food samples from spaghetti to steak to desserts. Everything looks pretty and have the flexible silicon texture.

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It’s really fun to take photos of and with the food samples. The activity itself is very fun because you get to pick what you want to put on y our cake and parfait. You also get to make the cream for your dessert.
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The staff at the classroom are super nice and explains the process of making food samples very throughly.


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Hakata Dolls

We visited a Hakata Dolls store this time. The name of this shop is Shogetsudo. Hakata is one of the traditional city in Fukuoka. Hakata Doll was founded back in 1601. They keep producing characteristic dolls such as beautiful ladies, samurais, “Noh” play charactors, children, etc. You can see those dolls, purchase ones, or even experience painting them in the store!

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They give you example photos and you just paint on the doll with some colours as you like! So it’s up to you what kind of charactor you would like to put on your doll.
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Now, you made it! That’s the only Hakata Doll you have in the world! (You can see the colour differences between these two dolls.)
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Here are the comments from these students;

“It was very eye-opening to see all the delicate Hakata dolls. The store is beautifully decorated and all the dolls are exquisite. The painting area is really spacious with a wide selection of colors. I really enjoyed the painting session because it was fun and relaxing. It was really helpful that we learned a little bit about the dolls before going to the store. It was also fun to learn about the fun types of Japanese dolls and what festivals they are used for! I would definitely recommend all students to paint their own Hakata doll because it not only makes for a pretty decoration but also is a fun and relaxing activity.”

“First our teacher told us a little about traditional Japanese dolls. Then we walked to the store and got to pick the dolls we wanted to paint. There were many different ones, it was hard to decide! After that we got to start painting them right away. It was nice and surprisingly relaxing, although a bit hard. I definitely have respect for the makers and painters of these beautiful dolls! We even got to keep the dolls we painted. All in all it was a good cultural learning experience.”

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