Japan Opportunity:7 Teachers1 Asia NZ Leaders Network rep1 Asia NZ rep7 day trip of Japan An opportunity for teachers who have not been to Japan for more than two weeks previously. The visit will include aspects tailored to participants’ areas of interest. It will be a broad “Japan for Beginners” programme that will cover aspects of education, culture, history, religion, society, economy and daily life.
Asia nz trip to japan
My Trip to Japan
Dedicated to building New Zealanders’ knowledge and
understanding of Asia
Work in five main areas: business, arts/culture,
education, media and research
Provide scholarships and opportunities that provide
New Zealander’s with firsthand experiences of Asia and
forge valuable links
Schedule for the Week
7 days: Four days in Tokyo and three days in Kyoto
Day 1: Meiji Shrine, Yogiyogi Park, Harajuku, Cat Café
Day 2: NZ Embassy, Roppongi Hills Tower, Yakatabune –
boat trip view of Sakura and Sky Tree, Karaoke
Day 3: Tsukiji Market, Hamarikkyu Garden, Tokyo Edo
Museum, Asahi Shimbun – newspaper company and
discussion with the editor
Day 4: Kamagaya Junior High School, Tokyo Rinkai
Disaster Prevention Park, Shibuya
Day 5: Travel to Kyoto, Kiyomizu temple and surrounding
areas, Dress up in Kimono, Stayed in traditional Japanese
house and slept on Futons
Day 6: Arashiyama – bamboo forest, Nishiki Market,
Kinkakuji, Nijo Castle
Day 7: Travel back to Tokyo, Discussion and reflections
Through interacting with and observing the Japanese in a variety of settings throughout the trip, I
experienced interesting insights and knowledge into their culture. Many of my observations I simply
would not have been able to experience if I had simply come on a holiday to Japan. This is because
the majority of people I spoke to had links with Fiona, making them much more willing to speak
openly about their country and culture. A highlight of the trip for me was the discussion at the New
Zealand Embassy with Ambassador Sinclair, Paul Roberts, Rebecca Adams I came away very
informed as to why it is so essential for strong ties to be made between Asia and New Zealand.
The learning that took place during my time in Japan was vast. I took a lot away from the
experience, not only in regards to my newfound knowledge of the Japanese culture but towards the
way I view differences. Prior to this trip I was determined to be open to all aspects of Japanese
culture including food, dress, mannerisms, and social behaviours etc.
During my trip I experienced many aspects of Japanese culture which were vastly different to those I
would have experienced back home in New Zealand, and despite my best efforts my mind began to
close up at times on the journey. From time to time I caught myself thinking how strange, weird or
odd it was that particular rules and customs were present in Japan. This 'labelling' was simply me
comparing these new experiences to those I had had previously, while holding a mindset that my
previous experiences were 'right' and that these new experiences were 'weird or strange.' It would
have been easy for me to have held true to this closed mindset but I probably would have left the
experience filled with judgements about rights and wrongs between the two countries. However I
caught myself in this rigid way of thinking and rather than reacting to it, I saw facing my judgements
as an opportunity for growth. I hope to model and share this shift in my perception of difference with
both my students and colleagues.
Big Idea: Children need to be equipped with the skills
that will enable them to engage with Asian cultures
What does this mean for…
- Us as educators?
- The children of Eastern Hutt at each level?
- Our environment?