Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Read Aloud

I gave my first lesson today! I read the book Sadako by Eleanor Coerr. Through this book about a Japanese legend, my goal was to show the unique culture of the country. The book details the story of a young girl named Sadako Sasaki, who is diagnosed with leukemia after the atomic bomb is dropped on Hiroshima. Through the japanese legend of called the Thousand Crane Project, she tries to heal herself by folding a thousand paper cranes. Sadly, the girl succumbs after she is only 2/3 of the way done. In a happy ending, her classmates fold the remainder of the cranes for her, and publish her writing while she was in the hospital. Her words spread all over Japan, and later a monument was erected in Peace Park (a monument to those ravaged by the atom bomb)of Sadaka; a girl holding a large, golden crane. Today, people from all over fold origami cranes and send them to the monument. The kids got so excited, one even suggested that their class should complete the thousand crane project. They also did very well picking up on the details of Japanese culture from the book, including paper lanterns being sacrificed at Peace Day, traditional kimonos for Japanese girls, a festival to commemorate those killed at Hiroshima called O Bon, and of course, the cranes. One even picked up on the symbolism the cranes held for health, healing, and life.
These are pictures of the Hiroshima Peace Park, mentioned above. The glass display cases contain the cranes people send in!
After reading the book, I ran through how to make their own origami cranes. It went really well, and I'm happy to say some (most) of their cranes looked even better than mine. After seeing how difficult it is to make one, they seem have to rethought the thousand crane project, though! These are the instruction the kids used...
And how their cranes turned out afterwards!

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