As you can see from the title, this is the second part of my KAKEHASHI Project reflection. If you missed part one you can check it out here –> Japan: KAKEHASHI Project Reflections
After returning to the U.S. and sharing my stories with friends and family (shout out to everyone who put up with that for a while lol), I began planning the lessons I would share at local elementary schools. After several weeks of contacting teachers I was scheduled to give my presentations in December. I think the teachers wanted me to be an end of year treat for their students? I’m not sure, but either way this gave me plenty of time to prepare a powerpoint and an activity related to daruma. Fast forward to December and I conducted several lessons at a public elementary school and a private elementary school. I was surprised with how much the students actually knew about Japan. I mentioned Pokémon a few times and I had their full attention lol.
The final portion of the KAKEHASHI Project involved welcoming Shizuoka University students visiting Kansas. I was looking forward to this in part because I knew I would be able to see my KAKEHASHI cohort and have a mini-reunion! We met at their hosting venue in Lawrence, Kansas, the day they arrived and simply socialized. The cross-cultural experience was really rewarding. I enjoyed sharing my experiences in their home prefecture and seeing their reactions. Before our meetup ended, we went out and had ice cream because, why not? No, actually it was the only thing open at that time of night….but still lol
Walking away from this experience, the most interesting, and educational aspect, in my opinion, was seeing how people interpret new places and people.
Ad astra per aspera,