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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Field Trip: Destination Japan!

The DVD's we found at the library. 
Two were for kids from Schlessinger Media.
It’s that time of year again for Geography Day!  We were not going to spend a week on it; however, we just didn’t get around to working on our project, so I decided that the younger children and I would go ahead and spend a week working on our Geography Day project.  This year, we are taking a virtual field trip to Japan!  What an interesting country it is! 
Yesterday, we paid a visit to our library to obtain resource materials.  I found a travel DVD in the adult section on Tokyo and two DVD’s in the children’s section.  I also found a travel guide for Japan in the adult section and a couple of research books in the children’s section.  To top off our study, I found a picture book called The Beckoning Cat, which is an old folktale from Japan.

We spent some time looking over the books we got from the library and then watched the two videos from the children’s section.  We looked over some of the recipes and crafts that were in one of the books and chose some that we thought we could do.  Then, we worked on some of the lapbook minibooks that we will paste to our presentation board.  Mostly, basic facts and mapwork.

Today, we read through part of the other reference book we had gotten.  We learned more about the geography of Japan and how because Japan is very mountainous, most people live in the cities.  We also learned that the climate of Japan is varied since the islands stretch from off the coast of Siberia, all the way down to near the equator.  Winters in the north can be harsh and skiing and winter sports are popular.  The further south you go, sandy beaches are the norm, but they also deal with monsoons!  Earthquakes are also very frequent in Japan, which also has 60 active volcanoes!
The girls also decided to paint kokeshi dolls using the wooden peg doll forms.  (We use these for our painted saints.  The kids also worked on researching their saints from Japan.  Each child gets to choose one (or two) and write up a paragraph about that saint.  Alex chose St. Paul Miki.  

We also watched the travel film on Tokyo that I found in the adult section of the library.  It was very informative and quite interesting.  For
Here are the girls' finished Kokeshi Dolls along with a
Beckoning Cat that I needle felted.
example, they showed the fish market where the people come to buy fish.  At 6:00 in the morning, they hold an auction for the tuna.  I remember the tuna my brother-in-law caught at the beach.  It was nowhere the size of these jumbo tuna!  The narrator said that these tuna can go for up to $10,000!  That's some tuna!  They toured many of sites in and around Tokyo.  Did you know that they have a replica of the Eifel Tower in Tokyo? 

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