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International Programs

Japan Trip 2016 Update 2

23 June 2016 by

After much nervousness (which is understandable) about living with complete strangers, the energy level of students has increased with stories of how they got home, who they saw, what they ate, getting off trains too late due to distraction, and what was spoken about in their homestay. In fact, this morning a couple of students were televised on a game show which showed off the MacKillop uniform. Some Seishu High School families noticed this and recognized the uniform and it’s provided quite a talking point.

At Seishu the day starts with the MacKillop prayer and students fill a blackboard with phrases that may be useful for them at home while increasing their vocabulary. The phrases also tells the teachers a story for example, one phrase referred to ‘being full’ which tells us our students are being well fed.

All students had to introduce themselves in Japanese at a whole school assembly which drew comparisons to MacKillop’s assemblies. We toured the High School where we saw photos of past MacKillop students who have had longer term stays dating back to 2000. We have experienced many classes including:

  • International Culture where students shared their understanding of texting as a language
  • English Conversation where students introduced themselves, their families and their hobbies
  • English Presentation Debate where students discussed similarities and differences between Seishu High School and MacKillop College
  • Japanese Calligraphy where students patiently wrote their favorite kanji and
  • Music where we sang a rendition of Kyu Sakimoto’s ‘Sukiyaki’

One particular highlight has been catching up with Lucy Taylor-Schmitzer who is a Year 2 student for six months and a former MacKillop graduate of 2015. Lucy is certainly a model for the students on this immersion program. Lucy makes the language faculty at MacKillop College proud.


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