22 May 20

Mishima Calling

Ogenki desu ka? How are you?

These were the first tentative words between our senior Japanese class and their counterparts in Shizuoka in Week 3.

They gathered in the International room as a group video call was projected onto the big screen, allowing our students to chat with a class from the Nihon University Mishima Senior High School, one of our exchange program partnership schools for over a decade.

Like any gathering where people meet for the first time, it took a while for things to warm up. Our students had to speak clearly and sometimes repeat questions, but they bravely tried out their Japanese speaking skills to get to know each other.

Likewise, the Japanese students were happy to practise their English conversation to share interesting facts about each country.

What we found out about them:

  • They are currently learning from home due to COVID-19, where they spend their days studying English and watching TV.
  • Their favourite animals included rabbits, dogs and turtles
  • They think koalas are cute
  • Like many teenagers, their favourite food included hamburgers.

Some of the things they asked the REC students (and some answers):

  • Do you like sports? (Yes)
  • Have you been to Japan and have you climbed Mount Fuji? (Yes but too hard to climb Mount Fuji)
  • What Japanese food do you like? (All of it)
  • What do you think about corona virus? (It’s bad)
  • Have you ever watched anime? (Yes)
  • Why do you like studying Japanese? (I like to talk to Japanese people)

By the end of the session there was lots of giggling and new found friendship, with the promise to meet up again online soon.