Year 4, 5 and 6 in Senior Japanese have had a very exciting focus this term as we have linked the Japanese language with literacy. I have been so pleased with how much interest and enjoyment that the students have shown with these Japanese texts. In Year 4, we are learning to read a Japanese text called, “Ekiben Shinkansen.” ‘Eki’ means train and ‘ben’ refers to a bento box, therefore it refers to a bento box meal that we eat on a train.
We have learnt the word for ‘bullet train’ which is a ‘shinkansen’ and we are learning to write this word in hiragana (しんかんせん). All students loved seeing Miller Sensei’s videos of the five shinkansen’s that she travelled on in the recent school holidays within Japan!
In Years 5 and 6, we are learning to read an old Japanese folk tale called, “Omusubi Kororin.” ‘Omosubi’ is an old fashioned Japanese word for onigiri. ‘Kororin’ means rolling so it is translated as, “The Rolling Rice Ball.” Our learning intention is to retell the story with Japanese words, phrases and Japanese sign language. Students have been encouraged to read and write the title of our story in hiragana. They are also learning how to read and write three kanji characters representing three keywords from our story. They include tree (ki), river (kawa) and mountain (yama). Please see examples of the Japanese writing forms below –
“Omusubi Kororin” (おむすび ころりん) tree 木 river 川 mountain 山
Please notice the link above with the Year 3 Junior students learning the kanji for Thursday (木) and the Senior students learning ‘ki’ for tree (木). This is purposeful as the Senior Japanese program compliments and builds upon prior learning in the Junior Japanese program at St. Paul’s. Walker Sensei and I are meeting on Monday, Week 3 to ensure that seamless planning and programming occurs for all students in 2020.
“Onigiri Action” is a social justice action program that attempts to ‘change the world with onigiri.’ It is a wonderful initiative that the students and are supporting from the 7th October – 20th November 2019. Senior students are encouraged to bring in an ‘omusubi’ rice ball every Thursday to Senior Japanese Club. Miller Sensei will then take a photo of the omusubi (food photos only) and upload it to the website. For every photo posted with the hashtag #OnigiriAction, their partner organisations will provide 5 school meals to children in need (Africa and South East Asia). Let’s make ‘onigiri with love’ for children in need all around the world! A $1.00 colouring competition has also begun to raise much needed funds for this great cause. Prizes will be awarded to each year level from Prep – Year 6. Please donate $1.00 and receive your colouring entry outside the Japanese classroom for the first 10 minutes of every lunchtime for the next three weeks.
Ganbatte kudasai, (Good luck)
Miller Sensei J