February, 2016: Breeze Issue #100

A Free Monthly E-Newsletter for Friends of Japan & Teachers of Japanese

Japan Found Me Campaign

Description:

Top Row, Left to Right

  1. Elisa Rothenberg: I met renowned photographer Ishiuchi Miyako at the screening of the documentary "The Legend of FRIDA KAHLO"at the Japan Foundation, Los Angeles.
  2. Robin Wolf: Making rice balls at the Change the World With Onigiri event at JFLA on November 17.
  3. Hadley May: Kakehashi Project  -the bridge for tomorrow- by The Japan Foundation changed my life. This is a picture of myself and Momona who stayed with me while she was visiting America. The picture was taken at the Discovery Station Children’s Museum when Japanese Kakehashi students and Boonsboro High School students hosted Japan-U.S. friendship day. I have studied Japanese for a year and a half then, but never had a chance to have an authentic experience speaking Japanese or understanding Japanese culture. Time with Momona made me more confident speaking Japanese, more interested in Japanese culture, and encouraged me to continue my study. We are still in touch after two years, and I will be visiting Japan for the second time soon.
  4. Joshua Hansell: This is a picture from the 2010 Educator's Tour of Japan. I was helping elementary children in Saitama clean their halls between classes. I teach Japanese in a Seattle high school, and I think that students should clean their own school here in America as well.

Second Row, Left to Right

  1. Clarissa Cervantes: After attending several events at The Japan Foundation in Los Angeles about Japanese culture, film and arts, food and literature my desire to travel and explore Japan took me to the most beautiful adventure of my life from Tokyo, Kyoto, Nagoya through Osaka. What I love about JFLA are the old classic Japanese movies and dramas as well as food lessons that prepared me to experience Japan.
  2. Jonathan Li: This is a picture of me at the end of the 2015 JET Memorial Invitation Program with 4 other participants as well as Director Hara. The program was a life-changing experience and I made many new lifelong friends.
  3. Iya Nemastil: This is a picture of my Japanese 1 students holding up some of the materials we were able to purchase thanks to the Japan Foundation's generous $1,000 Japanese Teaching Materials Grant. Since Japanese is a brand new program for our school, we are so thankful for all of the support that you give us!
  4. Kelly Stone: The Japan Foundation made it possible for me to improve my Japanese communication and teaching skills by participating in the Short-Term Teacher Training Program in Urawa. This program has changed the way I teach in so many ways. From giving me the opportunity to practice my Japanese on a daily basis with native speakers, to learning the different ways teachers from around the world teach Japanese. Perhaps the most significant of all is being able to return home with the confidence to teach my students a language and culture that has captivated me from the very beginning. It is this inner strength and determination that the Japan Foundation has given me that is the most valuable thing I could have taken from the Short-Term Teacher Training Program.

Third Row, Staircase to the Right

  1. MC Burke: Along with thirty-two other high schoolers from all across the United States, I was able to go to Japan as a part of the JET-Memorial Invitation Program, organized by the Japan Foundation.
  2. Joyce Roth: It was a fun sushi evening at Japan Foundation! I enjoyed meeting other guests, the sushi chefs and especially the "oishi" sushi dishes that I prepared and ate! Arigaoto!
  3. Mark Biedlingmaier: This was taken during the 2014, 15th annual Japanese Food Festival in Universal City. Although it is not an event exclusively organized by JFLA, it was among the first of many Japanese events I attended thanks to the advocacy of your organization. I had never seen someone fillet a blue fin tuna that large!
  4. Lovely Matias: I was so grateful to be one of the participants of the 2014 JET-MIP program. I was able to travel to the different cities, while learning about Japanese culture and language. One of my favorite visit was the Todaiji Temple in Nara. It's amazing to think how the Daibutsuden was made out of wood. Also, the deers casually walking around really made my day.

Bottom Row. Left to Right

  1. Samantha Juedmann: I didn’t know what to expect when I received the wonderful opportunity to travel to Japan with the Kakehashi scholarship.  As I packed my first suitcase to board my first airplane and to travel outside the United States for the first time, I was very excited but a little nervous.  However, during my stay, my worries drifted away.  In Japan, I was able to find courage and independence within myself by facing the unknown; however this wouldn’t have been possible without the friends I made there.  Despite the language barrier, we clicked, learning a lot about our different cultures and languages in the process.  I returned home with not only a new confidence, but also a new interest in language, culture and people of Japan.  As I continue studying Japanese, I hope to someday return to the country that welcomed me so kindly when I was younger.  Thank you so much, Japan Foundation!
  2. Rachel Resnick: Right before the High School Summit in Rikuzentakata, our group was surprised by meeting the town's mascot Yume-chan!
  3. Nicholas Gallitano: My experience in Japan was unique compared to that of most non-Japanese individuals. In July of 2015, while participating in JET-MIP, I had the amazing opportunity to see the Tohoku region, which is very rural. While many people in big cities, like Tokyo or Osaka, speak at least some English, virtually no one I met in Tohoku spoke any English. This, however, proved to be somewhat of a gift in disguise. My friends and I were forced to not only utilize our limited Japanese, but also rely on the kindness and generosity of the Japanese people. This photo was taken outside the Patisserie Burian in Kesennuma, which was owned by the world’s nicest obaachan. She welcomed us inside, offering us umeboshi, and helped us find the pastries we were hankering for. I will never forget the unparalleled hospitality I received both here in Kesennuma and throughout Japan.
  4. Taylor-Anne Kim: This is a picture from my time in the JET Memorial Invitation Program in the summer of 2015. This is inside the Japan Foundation Language Institute in Kansai. Half of the participants wore Yukatas together on the morning of our last day in Japan.