It’s hard not to think about Japan. The people, of course, but also the culture that became warmly infused into my life when my family lived there for half a year when I was a kid.
It will be a long time before the Japanese people can resume their peaceful, everyday pleasures of slurping their soup, folding a piece of paper into an elegant animal, or admiring the beauty of a bunch of rocks placed just so.
Crisis has a way of drawing people together, as does simply getting to know each other. Today I’d like to mention a few books that can help kids appreciate the multi faceted Japanese culture.
Japan: Over 40 Activities to Experience Japan—Past and Present by Debbi Michiko Florence
The ABC”s of Origami. Paper Folding for Children by Claude Sarasas. Beautiful illustrations, easy to follow instructions.
Honda. The Boy Who Dreamed of Cars by Mark Weston. Interesting biography of Soichiro Honda. Now I want a Honda motorcycle.
Old Japan. The Hands-on Approach to History by Andrew Haslam and Clare Doran. Carp streamers, kabuki theater, laquered bento boxes—fun.
Cooking the Japanese Way by Reiko Weston Miso soup, sukiyaki, and green tea—yum.
Games People Play! Japan. By Philip Brooks Pachinko Machines, Sumo wrestlers, and Japanese Doll Festival all in one book.