By Kharan Pierce
The students from Shikoku University who, through the Kakehashi program, delighted us with a visit to our program last Saturday. Upon their arrival, some of the Japanese Plus students greeted and welcomed them with an excited “Hajimemashite” and self introduction to their group. The Kakehashi students then went into a PowerPoint presentation about their home island, Shikoku, Japan. Their presentation began with some description of Shikoku including beautiful pictures of nature, an enchanting vine bridge in Iya Valley and the view of Shikoku from high up. I love seeing the images of their home because everything is so green and luscious. Their presentation continued with some descriptions of traditions in Shikoku – one of them being a province-wide celebration of the popular Anime show.
Another tradition we learned about was the Awa Odori dance that is well known in the region. The students told us that different places have their own variations. We even got the opportunity to learn a part of the Awa Odori dance through a fitness video later in the program.
Throughout their whole presentation, it was clear that the students had rehearsed their entire presentation in detail and were very prepared. Compared to American students who will often do a class presentation without having rehearsed, the Japanese set a new standard for me personally. The flow of the presentation was much nicer than some I would see on a regular day. Maybe the next time I have a big project, I’ll use some of what I saw with the Japanese students to try and elevate the quality of my presentation.