October 2009: JET Effect Spotlight


On October 9th Aomori AJET hosted its annual Japanese Culture Day.  88 ALTs and CIRs joined each other in Aomori City to learn about and practice traditional Japanese arts.  Aomori AJET, along with help from the prefectural education office, found Japanese community members who practice traditional arts and were willing to donate their time showing their arts to members of the JET community.

The event included three informative seminars: Japanese pottery, Sumo wrestling, and the dialects of Aomori Prefecture.  There were also 7 hands-on classes: Japanese Dance, Go, Calligraphy, Aikido, Taiko, Japanese Cooking, and Yawata Uma–a hand-painted horse doll from Hachinohe, Aomori.

JETs volunteered to help translate all of the classes; and some JETs who participate in Japanese Arts helped the Japanese teachers explain their subject.  AJET hosts this event to give JETs in Aomori a closer and better understanding of their host country.  The event was a great success; in fact, several JETs have decided to continue practicing a Japanese art in their community.  Said first year ALT, Chloe Karamian of Hachinohe City, “Culture Day was the most enjoyable event of the AJET calendar so far!  I had a fantastic time learning about Sumo, playing the taiko drums, and I liked Japanese dance so much that I have actually joined a class in my city.”

Inquiries about this project or nominations of JET projects that deserve to be honoured in a JET Effect article can be sent to