I think I knew from your very first post that you and I are on the same wavelength. I'm "doing Japan" with all my classes. I always teach that way. It keeps me organized and sane. First they all saw an excellent movie on Japan called "A Kids View of Japan." Kristi Yamaguchi (Olympics skater) is narrator. So far my first graders are painting fish kites, seconds are making a family of origami swans on a paper pond, thirds - fake food, fourths - scrolls of favorite natural places they've visited, and soon my fifths will be doing lino-cut fish prints.
I would dearly love to visit you and your Japan stuff in Long Island. Maybe some weekend my husband and daughter and I could come. I'm not a bit adventurous about driving or I would come by myself. My uncle and his family used to live in Westbury Long Island but I have never been there.
I also wish I could go to the conference in Denver. Wow! Denver! That sounds so cool. I'm really out of sync with people my age. I am 51 and have a six year old. Oh well... it's loads of fun - she lost two front teeth last weekend.
I will try my best to get to the conference - maybe hook up with someone on the list.
I do have quite a nice collection of things Japanese. I taught this unit six years ago. But occasionally I have questions that perhaps you could answer.
LOL ---Sky in NJ
----- Original Message -----
To: ArtsEdNet Talk
Sent: Thursday, October 23, 2003 7:03 AM
Subject: Re: prompts/Japanese food
In a message dated 10/22/2003 6:46:52 AM Eastern Daylight Time, firstname.lastname@example.org writes:
Here's an inspiring (I think new) lesson. We're doing a unit on Japan this year. My third graders were inspired by the plasitic food displays in the windows of Japanese restaurants. These displays are so realistic that you can't believe the food isn't real. It takes them years of training to learn how to make this plastic food. I got some great images from Google of fake shrimp tempura, beef bowl and fried rice. There's a district in Japan devoted to this fake food.
Kinnachiwa, Sky, you are ME writing this, right....LOL...we teach sooo similarly, its uncanny! After my trip to Japan on the Fullbright scholarship last year, I did a unit which taught a different aspect of Japanese culture through art. Third grade made food. I wanted to buy examples of the fake food to bring back, and although I brought back almost everything else, when I visited the area known for this, and its famous store, the fake food was just incredibly too expensive. But, my students did this sculpture in ceramics. They added authentic chopsticks,etc. They even made their own teabowls. We had an authentic tea ceremony (or at least I shared with them what I could remember). The teabowls they glazed, but I found that painting the food with acyrlic paint made it look more authentic.
I will be sharing all my lessons and bringing examples of all grade levels of my students' work on this Japan unit to the National Conference this spring in Denver, if my workshop proposal is accepted. If you want to take a ride to Long Island from NJ, Sky, I will share my "Culture Box" of Japan with you, if you are interested in teaching other aspects of this fascinating culture.
Susan on Long Island