When Ayane Hida from The University of Findlay visited our classes in January, she taught us about the importance of characters in Japanese culture. Many prefectures in Japan are known for their characters and these are used to increase tourism, sales, and create a sense of pride and unity within the community. All of our students used a pencil to draw up their own character ideas for Marysville and MHS/ECHS. There was a common theme of lions, turtles, and of course, corn. We narrowed it down to three designs. We picked them because they were similar in shape, simple, and had the cute factor.
Eve Hawley, Rachel Clarridge, and Aaron Schoby designed these 3.
This was the digitalized result:
Archie the tortoise is for Early College High School because they have a pet tortoise. It is also wearing a bandanna with gears, which symbolize the STEM school engineering focus.
Monarch the lion is for Marysville High School because our mascot is a monarch, a strong lion and leader. (Our version is so much cuter!)
The one in the middle, Corn-chan is just super cute and all the students in Marysville thought that corn was a symbol in our town.
We plan to utilize these characters as symbols of Marysville Japanese and sell shirts with them on it, as well as promote them during our culture events, honor society, etc.
This year we were also able to start our very first chapter of the Japanese National Honor Society. Eligible students had to be in their second year of Japanese with a 3.0 cumulative GPA and a 3.5 in Japanese classes. Schubert Sensei and I had the distinct pleasure of inducting 22 students on April 30, 2016 and we couldn’t be more proud! The event included guest speeches by JR Rausch of Marysville, Eric Phillips of Union County Chamber of Commerce, Damon Robinson of FT Precision Inc., Isao Shoji or Japan America Society of Central Ohio, and Jun Kawabe of Ohio Wesleyan University. Our students got to hear firsthand the wide range of benefits and experiences that studying Japanese can bring, as well as say a few words on their own about their experience studying Japanese at Marysville. The ceremony included reading of the oath in both Japanese & English, as well as a candle lighting, and a delicious reception of Japanese finger-food afterwards. It was great to get a chance to mingle with parents as well as see how Japanese has impacted students personally. The mission of the Japanese Honor Society is to serve as a bridge of international understanding between the US and Japan as well as an ambassador to promote friendship between the two countries. JNHS members will teach Japanese to elementary school students for a period of 5-8 weeks as well as serve as tutors to the lower levels of Japanese at both ECHS and MHS. Next school year we will fundraise by selling t-shirts with the amazing Marysville characters on them: Monarch the lion, Archie the tortoise, and of course Corn-chan.
Here is the program from our event:
On April 5, 2016 we successfully put on our second Annual Evening of Japanese Culture, in order to advocate for our language program, showcase Japanese culture, and raise money towards the Japan trip 16 MHS students are taking on June 14.
The event included the following:
茶道 tea ceremony
金魚すくい goldfish game
太鼓 taiko drumming
Not only were we able to raise over $5,000 to help our students, but we also had a huge turnout, great sponsors, and amazing community and business support! We could not have done this without all of your help! You can be on the lookout for next year’s culture event on Saturday April 8, 2017. Mark your calendars!
To see a list of sponsors click here.
To view photos from this year's event please click here.
Check out our event program!
I am a high school Japanese teacher developing my own comprehensive and communicative Japanese program in Marysville, Ohio.