On January 21st 2014, the Japan Foundation London held a training day for current and prospective volunteers of the Japanese Taster for Schools (JTS) Programme at Newcastle University for the first time. JTS volunteers are fluent Japanese speakers who deliver Japanese language taster sessions at UK primary and secondary schools, in order to inspire pupils to learn more about Japanese language and culture, and to encourage schools to start Japanese classes.
A total of 29 people attended the training day, which began with an overview of the Japan Foundation and the JTS Programme. This was followed by a workshop by Hiroko Tanaka (Japanese Language Advisor and co-ordinator of JTS at the Japan Foundation), who introduced a variety of games and enjoyable activities to teach Japanese in an effective and engaging manner. These included songs to teach Japanese greetings, gestures for learning the numbers 1-10 in Japanese, and “Samurai Rock, Paper, Scissors” which involves making and wearing origami samurai helmets!
The workshop was very well received by all participants. One participant, Kimie Tanaka, commented:「短期間のセッションなのに内容も充実していて面白かったです」
(“Although it was a short session, it was fun and managed to pack everything in.”)
Another participant, Sophie Kerr, said, “Activity suggestions were really interesting and useful. Demonstrations of songs and games were also useful. And fun!”
The Japan Foundation would like to thank all attendees for coming, as well as Kumi Casey and all the other staff at the School of Modern Languages for supporting this event.
Our next JTS Training Day will take place in London on February 21st – click here for more information and to book your place.
If you would like to find out more about the JTS Programme and how to become a member, please click here.