July 05, 2016

 Pangaea Newsletter for July 2016

Hello everyone. This is Nomu-Nomu who helps with the activities in the Tokyo Honest Village.
We held activities in the Honest Village today! The children could have been sleepy given the increasing humidity and heat, but they are full of energy today; I'm sure they'#ll sleep soundly later.
So for this month's newsletter, we have two articles which show us just how energetic the children have been. The Chairperson, Yumi, will tell us about the webcam activities between Kyoto Univ. and MIZY, and then the Facilitator Wataru gives us a report on Mie Univ. Village in June.

1. Kyoto Univ. & MIZY Webcam Activities Report
2. Mie Univ. Village Activity Report

1. Kyoto Univ. & MIZY Webcam Activities Report

Hello everyone. I'm writing this message to you as we have a precious moment of coolness here in Kyoto before the summer rains start.
At the end of May, Kyoto Univ. Village held some webcam activities with MIZY Village (Seoul, South Korea) at their new premises for Pangaea in the Gangnam District.
To start, we did “Koetsuna” as an ice-breaker. During the demonstration by the staff, I shouted loudly and the Kyoto Univ. Village team won. Since there were more children in the MIZY team though, they decidedly won when the children played.
After that, we played the word association game “Nazoren”. The children game up with their answers after a while by trusting their gut instincts. For the adults, this would be completely impossible.
Lastly, we sang to each other. Kyoto Univ. Village chose to sing Doraemon. As this program is also known in South Korea so everyone already knew it, and so without thinking, the giant Pictons swayed round left and right, like glow sticks at a concert. MIZY sang “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” for us. Although this was a song that everyone knew, it was interesting that the lyrics were different to what we knew.

At last we're entering into June, and at the end of next month we have the Pangaea Summer Festival, KISSY (Kyoto Intercultural Summer School for Youths). We've got one more team compared to later year which means at last we will finally have a full house with 35 people taking part.
In Pangaea, we are used to seeing everyone in split into teams of four - red, blue, yellow and green – but this time there will also be an orange team added. You might be asking “Why 35 people?” but it's because it is the maximum number of people's names and faces that I think I would be able to remember. Also, the children taking part will also have to remember everyone's names and faces too. Honestly, I think the children might have to remember a lot more than I will...
During the activities, while also trying to make everyone aware of their own state of being (both physical and mental), we also tried to make it a fun summer to remember for all of them. We still get contacted by the children that took part last year (including those from outside Japan) from time to time. So then, no matter how many more experiences they go out and have, they still can remember back to that summer.
It's expected to be a lot hotter this summer than it was last year. Therefore, last year after KISSY, we would do some exercise and get fitter. As our fitness levels get worse as we get older, it seems best we try to maintain it right?

*1 Koetsuna: An ice-breaker before the webcam activities. We call it a "Vocal Tug of War." Two teams compete to see who can say "Pangaea!" the loudest.

*2 Nazoren: One of the activities. Groups are made based on location, and one group will have to give hints and the other group will have to guess an answer from the hints given. The fewer hints the team needs to get the answer, the more points they will receive. The point of making corresponding teams from each country work together is that they can earn more points by showing they are thinking about cultural background, ways of thinking or developing a mutual understanding with others.

*3 Picton: Emoticons and symbols used by Pangaea.

■Photographs from Webcam Activities
Please see the link below to see the children full of energy!

2. Mie Univ. Village Activity Report

It's nice to meet you!
This is the Facilitator at Vegetalia Mie Univ. Village, Wataru Tanita. In Pangaea, I'm just called “Wataru”.
It's been about 3 years since I took part in the activities at Mie Univ. Village, and 1 year since I became the Facilitator (FL) there.
This time around, for the second round of activities this year, I'll be telling you about my impression of the building of a village as part of the “House-building” that we did in Mie Univ. Village.

■Activity Report

On 18 June, we made a village in “house-building” here at Vegetalia Mie Univ. Village.
On Pangaea Net, there are four things you can create – a planet, a country, a village and a house. In just four clicks, the children can access their houses that they create in this world.
This time everyone worked on creating a “village”.
In order to best convey the uniqueness of Mie Univ. Village in the children's world, and what kind of village it would, everyone came up with lots of different ideas as to what would be best to put into the village. As there were 36 children taking part in Mie Univ. Village this time, the children had lots of different ideas between them. It seemed that the children worked hard and put all their efforts into trying to work together to make the village, and it looks like their village is going to be a powerful one this time.
Also, since there were a lot of children taking part, they were split into teams of four and the ideas everyone came up with were the basis for the houses in the village.

It didn't matter which ideas they had come up with for making the houses in their village, each team was still lots of opinions flying around like “If we move this around like this, maybe we could get everyone's pictures in?” and “Wouldn't it be nice if we put stuff like Shiromochi-kun(*1) and other local things from Mie Prefecture in?”. We ended up four unique and interesting houses in the village. The children were very happy to hear that the houses in the village will change each month as lots of the children were interested in the Mie Univ. Village.

Also, as we've done this activity twice now, there were some stubborn children last time, but this time around after having been split into teams, they seemed to be a lot more open than they had been last time.
One thing to take away from the activities this time was that I think the village really highlights the individuality of each of them in a relaxed setting!

*1 Shiromochi-kun...The mascot for Tsu City (in Mie Prefecture)

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Posted by: kyotohq | 3. Newsletter