On Wednesday 6 November, Year 9 Japanese students had a wonderful day out on their Footsteps Elective Day.
They started with visiting Aikilife where they had a taste of Aikido, one of the Japanese martial arts. They also learned about the philosophy behind Aikido, which is literally to “be in harmony and not to go against the flow”. The training centre, or Dojo, was full of Japanese flavour including the folding screen, paper sliding doors, alcove, and a Japanese room with a Tatami mat, where the boys had a cup of Japanese tea and rice crackers after training.
They also visited Lennox Gardens where Michael Rabey from Rotary Club Canberra gave them a tour of the garden. It was so pleasant to walk around on a beautiful summer day. Students not only learnt the origin of various sculptures and monuments, but also the strong connection between Canberra and Nara, the sister city in Japan.
Michael explained that a Japanese war veteran collected coins from all over the world and melted them together with his sword to make the Peace Bell so as to spread the message of peace in the world. The Rotary Club was inspired by his project and installed the Peace Bell here as well as many other cities in the world. It was lovely to see the students striking the bell one by one in reverence, praying for world peace.
After having lunch at a Japanese restaurant, Chakichaki, they had a quiet time back at school, watching Japanese Anime. What an action packed day it was!