Hands-on Study of Korean Culture
Over the period September 3–15, the International Center held a hands-on Korean culture program for its students. Having received the cooperation of the Seoul National University of Education, the Korean culture program was offered as part of the Japan Student Services Organization’s 2012 International Student Exchange Support Program (for short stays and short visits). Six students took part in the program, which continued over the course of about two weeks. In the first week students learned about Korean culture while covering the basics of Korean in a language class, while the second week was devoted to continued study of Korean culture and three observation visits to elementary schools.
Students learned about Korean culture from a diverse array of activities that included visits to leading places of historical importance such as Changdeokgung Palace and Hwaseong Fortress. They saw contemporary theatrical arrangements of Korean literary classics and attended a special lecture on the history of cultural exchange between Korea and Japan by Seoul National University of Education professor An Hee Chun (Institute of Korean Studies).
The observation visits to elementary schools consisted of trips to Midong Elementary School on September 11, the Attached Elementary School of Seoul National University of Education on September 12, and Sindorim Elementary School on September 14. The Sindorim Elementary School visit was made possible because it is the workplace of the teacher Kim Jae-Ho, who studied as an exchange student from Seoul National University of Education in 2008. The visit included time in which the participating students divided up into pairs and conducted classes about Japanese culture.
Students found themselves able to discover differences and similarities between teaching styles and school life in Japan and Korea as they eagerly observed aspects they could learn from Korean elementary schools.