Bega High School has held its inaugural 'Japan Day', celebrating the language and culture of Japan with traditional activities for students to learn and enjoy.
Origami, traditional Japanese cooking, taiko drumming and traditional Japanese toys and games were some of the activities on offer for Bega HS students as well as visiting students from Narooma, Moruya and Jindabyne.
Bega HS's Japanese teacher and team leader of the South Coast Language Teacher Network, Takako Teranishi organised the day after a recent trip to Japan planned for students had to be cancelled.
Instead, Ms Teranishi decided to bring Japan to Bega.
"Kids are missing a lot and because we're a rural area it would cost a lot for the kids to go to Sydney or Melbourne.
"We thought, why don't we bring the culture here so that it doesn't cost too much for the kids," she said
Special zoom calls with students from schools in Osaka, Japan were also organised by Ms Teranishi, as students exchanged their artworks, songs and language via video.
Students in Japan spoke about the different seasonal and festival foods they eat and the cultural significance of food.
Foods for lunch boxes are chosen because of flavour, but often also have meaning attached to them.
Bamboo shoots grow well and strong, and are said to make children grow well and strong too.
"We do lots of zooms, even during normal lessons," Ms Teranishi said.
"I'm lucky because I have so many friends that are teachers in Japan, so we always organise it for the kids."
Japanese language is compulsory in year seven and eight at Bega HS, but often picked up as an elective afterwards due to its popularity.
"We have strong language in the school, I've got students from year 7 through to year 12"
"If we can make [Japan Day] an annual thing, or at least every second year that would be great," Ms Teranishi said.
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