5th book reading and culture event at the north branch of the Ikoma Library(2024/3/2)


The 5th book reading and culture event was held in cooperation with the north branch of the Ikoma Library on March 2nd at the north community center ISTA Habataki introducing the Indonesia and its culture. This event is a continuation of the collaboration with the Ikoma Library based on the cooperative agreement with Ikoma City to increase interaction between the community and NAIST international students. From NAIST, 5 Indonesian students and Robert King (CISS), who acted as MC and translator, participated in the event along with 9 Ikoma families (17 children (ages 2-10) and their guardians) that were ready to learn about Indonesian culture.

After the library staff opened the event with greetings and announcements from the library, Robert King (UEA, CISS) then greeted the participants and led everyone in doing Head, Shoulders Knees and Toes to get warmed up. This time the librarians chose 'The Very Hungry Caterpillar' by Eric Carle to read and a librarian read the book in Japanese followed by Indonesian students reading it in English. With this book being famous in Japan, children listened and mentioned the foods that the caterpillar would eat.

For the culture part of the event, Indonesian students prepared 5 different Indonesian games and activities to be played as they introduced the five main islands of Indonesia: Sumatra, Java, Kalimantan, Sulawesi and Papua. They included a game similar to jacks called 'bekel', a group game called 'cat and mouse', the 'dragon game', a game where children pair together as a gate and try to catch the other children and finally children were given the chance to play 'Twinkle, Twinkle little Star' using Angklung, a traditional musical instrument made of bamboo. The children listened attentively to the explanations of each game and they enjoyed trying all the new games. After each one, the Indonesian students introduced an island and showed the audience a video introducing it. Finally, the Indonesian students helped the children to learn how to play angklung, practicing enough so that they could actually play a song. The closed with Head, Shoulders Knees and Toes and then the Indonesian students said goodbye to everyone and handed out Indonesian gifts they had prepared.

We would like to thank our Indonesian for volunteering for the event and will continue to cooperate with Ikoma City to create new opportunities for international students and Ikoma citizens to interact and get to know each other. The next library event is scheduled for June and we will work with international students again to make an interesting and educational event for children.

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