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Friday, May 6th 2016

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Japanese Tour 2016 Highlights

In Week Nine of Term 1, students in the Year 10 and 11 Japanese classes visited Japan in a cultural learning tour as part of the Languages Department Program at the College. The tour itself lasted for two weeks.
We began our tour, landing in the city of Osaka. That night, the two classes travelled by coach to Kyoto. In Kyoto, we stayed in a youth hostel and we visited many temples, shrines and made traditional Japanese sweets. After Kyoto, we travelled by train to Osaka, the hometown of Sumiko Ranjitkumar, our Japanese teacher. Here, we visited Osaka Castle, the town of Nara (where deers are very abundant), the famous Osaka Aquarium and participated in the traditional Japanese art of karaoke!
After Osaka, we visited Hiroshima. Visiting Hiroshima was a very moving experience and allowed all students who attended the tour to see (as we visited the Hiroshima Peace Museum) the true horrors of the American’s bombing of Hiroshima towards the end of World War II. It was surreal to think that everything in Hiroshima was under 70 years old, as the entire city (all but one building) was destroyed by the atomic bomb. Whilst in Hiroshima, we visited a small island called Miyajima. Miyajima is (like the town of Nara) abundant with wild deer. Whilst there, we took a cable car through the mountains and got to see an ancient shrine which is usually surrounded by water. However, on our way back to the ferry, the tide was low so we got to walk out to the shrine and see it close up.
After our visit to Hiroshima, our final stop on the tour was the bustling capital of Japan, Tokyo. While we were in Tokyo we got to do lots of shopping and even spent a whole day at Disneyland.
This trip to Japan allowed us as Japanese students to implement all the skills which we have acquired over the past five years of studying Japanese. It was an experience which opened our eyes to other cultures in the world. It allowed us to see the way in which other cultures operate and how that differs to our own culture here in Australia. This trip to Japan, alongside our peers and teachers, allowed us, as young people, to interact with the world outside of Australia in a fun and educational way, using the knowledge and language skills which we have accumulated over the past five years at Newman College.
Henry Farnan, Year 11 Student

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