"KAKEHASHI Project" Invitation: Northern Valley Regional High School District (New Jersey)

Invitation in July 2013

Short-term stay in Japan: Group 3 (High School Students)
Northern Valley Regional High School District, New Jersey

Period: July 8 – 18, 2013
Local Visit Destination: Shimonoseki City, Yamaguchi Prefecture
Number of Participants: 25

Tour Photo Album

Photo of Orientation
Orientation

Photo taken at Tokyo National Museum (Studying Japanese history and culture)
Studying Japanese history and culture
(Tokyo National Museum)

Photo taken at Senso-ji/Nakamise in Asakusa 1 (Learning about Japanese traditional culture)
Visit to Senso-ji/Nakamise in Asakusa
(Learning about Japanese traditional culture)

Photo taken at Senso-ji/Nakamise in Asakusa 2 (Learning about Japanese traditional culture)
Visit to Senso-ji/Nakamise in Asakusa
(Learning about Japanese traditional culture)

Photo taken at Kaikyo Yume Tower in Yamaguchi International Trade and Cultural Center
Visit to Kaikyo Yume Tower in Yamaguchi International Trade and Cultural Center

Photo taken at Akama Jingu Shrine (Learning about Japanese local traditional culture)
Visit to Akama Jingu Shrine
(Learning about Japanese local traditional culture)

Photo of courtesy call at Shimonoseki City Hall (Greeting speech in Japanese)
Courtesy call at Shimonoseki City Hall
(Greeting speech in Japanese)

Photo of courtesy call on Governor of Shimonoseki City, Tomoaki Nakao
Courtesy call on Governor of Shimonoseki City, Tomoaki Nakao

Photo taken at Shimonoseki Marine Science Museum ‘Kaikyokan’(Experiencing Japanese local marine nature)
Visit to Shimonoseki Marine Science Museum ‘Kaikyokan’
(Experiencing Japanese local marine nature)

Photo of school exchange at Shimonoseki Minami High School 1
School exchange at Shimonoseki Minami High School

Photo of school exchange at Shimonoseki Minami High School 2
School exchange at Shimonoseki Minami High School

Photo of homestay experience (The first meeting)
Homestay experience
(The first meeting)

Photo of homestay experience
Homestay experience

Photo taken at Kanmon Pedestrian Tunnel
Visit to Kanmon Pedestrian Tunnel

Photo taken at Hinoyama Park (Experiencing Japanese local nature and culture)
Visit to Hinoyama Park
(Experiencing Japanese local nature and culture)

Photo taken at Chofu Mori Residence (Experiencing Japanese local culture and history)
Visit to Chofu Mori Residence
(Experiencing Japanese local culture and history)

Group photo taken at Meiji Shrine (Learning about Japanese traditional culture)
Visit to the Meiji Shrine
(Learning about Japanese traditional culture)

Photo taken at Meiji Shrine (Learning about Japanese traditional culture)
Visit to the Meiji Shrine
(Learning about Japanese traditional culture)

Photo of Okonomiyaki experience (Learning about Japanese food culture)
Okonomiyaki experience
(Learning about Japanese food culture)

Photo taken at Tokyo Toy Museum (Japanese cultural experience)
Visit to Tokyo Toy Museum
(Japanese cultural experience)

Photo taken in Akihabara (Learning about ‘Cool Japan’)
Visit to Akihabara
(Learning about ‘Cool Japan’)

Photo of “Cheers” at dinner time (Learning about Japanese food culture)
“Cheers!” at dinner time
(Learning about Japanese food culture)

Group photo taken at the National Diet Building (Understanding Japanese society )
Visit to the National Diet Building
(Understanding Japanese society)

Photo taken at Mega Web, Toyota City Showcase
Visit to Mega Web, Toyota City Showcase
(Learning about cutting-edge technologies of Japan)

Photo taken at Miraikan, The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Learning about cutting-edge technologies of Japan)
Visit to Miraikan, The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation
(Learning about cutting-edge technologies of Japan)

Photo of debriefing
Debriefing Session

Voices from Participants

1.Having participated in the KAKEHASHI Project, what do you think are Japan’s strengths and attractiveness?

  • Japan shows a lot of unity among the people. Everyone works together like how in the school all the students clean the rooms together. The onsen bath houses also show unity with everyone relaxing together. With that unity makes the strong trust that Japanese people have with one another. For example, they leave their umbrellas outside of the stores when they enter or they don’t use locks on their bicycles.
  • The strengths would be their national character and technology, and their attractiveness would be culture and history. During homestay, my host family showed me their greatest credibility of hospitality which highly exceeded my expectations. The attractiveness in culture such as games, anime, food, economy and fashion highly attracted me as well as the history.

2.How do you change your perspective of Japan through the project?

  • I only thought of Japan as a country which modernizes point of view along with the anime and media float follows it. Seeing the countryside really made me appreciate the country even more. Seeing just everything Japan has to offer; museums, observatories, shrines and temples, and other attractions made me realized how amazing Japan is as a whole.
  • Japan seemed to be very westernized at first. It quickly became cultural and stunning throughout the trip and I dreaded leaving.

3.After returning to the U.S., what aspect(s) of Japan do you want to learn more?

  • I will continue to study the Japanese language at a high level of education. In addition, I want to explore the cultural aspects of Japan.
  • I would like to learn more about the language. While I was here, I could only understand bits and pieces of Japanese. When I return home, I would like to educate myself so I can understand more when I ever return to this country.

4.It is hoped that you will promote further mutual understanding between our two countries, serving as bridges in the Japan-U.S. relationship. What will you do to deepen understanding of Japan’s strengths and attractiveness?

  • I plan on continuing my studies of Japanese to enter college with a Japanese studying abroad program and pursue a career with Japanese. I hope to be able to work in a field that connects US culture with Japanese culture. I’m not sure what it will be, but I’ll figure out how I will interact with Japan further.
  • I will most likely join Japanese class or club to strengthen my knowledge of Japan. I will also bring my family to Japan later in my life.

5.Please freely describe your experience in the KAKEHASHI Project.

  • The KAKEHASHI Project is one of the greatest things that I’ve ever done. Not only did it give me the chance to go to the place I’ve wanted to go ever since I was a child. I want to thank the Japanese government for coming up with this program. I also want to thank my host family for their hospitality and Shimonoseki Minami High School for hosting us at their school. I loved their activities. It feels like I’ve been to heaven by going here and I would love to come back here. EVEN LIVE HERE! No other words can describe my experience. Thank you everyone for this KAKEHASHI journey.
  • Since we stepped into the airport, I’ve felt welcomed in Japan. Everywhere I went, everyone greeted us with warm hearts and made me feel at home. Especially during my home stay, my opinion of the Japanese people has greatly improved. My host mother welcomed me with open arms and treated me as if I were her real son. She tried her best to make me feel comfortable whenever I was. Her children were also respectful to me and treated me like an older brother. When we parted, my home stay mother cried for me and she loved me. I had an amazing experience here. I will forever remember this trip, my host family and all of my friends I�ve made here. Thank you for allowing me on this trip!

[Contact Us]

TEL: +81-(0)3-5369-6022
FAX: +81-(0)3-5369-6042
E-mail: infokakehashi@jpf.go.jp
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