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Indiana University


K-12 East Asian Connection


Volume XV, Number 2

Spring 2011


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Any questions? Contact us.

leigao [at] indiana [dot] edu (Cathy Gao)
Outreach Coordinator

Read previous issues in our archive.


New Photovoice Web Site

As a resource for teachers seeking ways to connect students across cultures, EASC has launched a new Web site for teachers wishing to learn how to use Photovoice, a teaching methodology that asks students to represent their lives visually by taking photographs of themselves and their daily lives. The Web site illustrates how Photovoice works and provides a step-by-step protocol for launching Photovoice projects. EASC developed this Web site based on two years' experience in running its own Photovoice projects between secondary schools in the United States and China.

Photovoice works by having students in two internationally partnered schools take digital photographs of their daily lives within their families, schools, and communities and exchange them with each other via a shared Web page. They then ask questions of each other about their photos through one-on-one dialogue and group discussion. The goal is to pique student interest in the culture and lives of their peers in a different country and to potentially build a foundation for future institutional partnerships.

Teachers will find Photovoice an inexpensive and engaging way to connect students across cultures. Visit EASC's new Photovoice Web site to view a sample project and download step-by-step instructions for using Photovoice in your school.

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K-16 Workshop on "Advocacy and Articulation in Japanese Language Education"

In April EASC, in collaboration with the Association of Indiana Teachers of Japanese, held a one-day workshop for elementary, secondary, and college teachers of Japanese titled "Advocacy and Articulation in Japanese Language Education" in Indianapolis. Twelve high school instructors and 14 university instructors from Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, and Wisconsin participated in the workshop.

Organized by Keiko Kuriyama (EALC) and Molly Jeon (Bloomington High School North), the workshop was a response to the growing need among Japanese language teachers to know how to advocate successfully for their programs in their districts and to strengthen articulation within the K-16 education system. Maki Watanabe Isoyama (Senior Program Officer, Japan Foundation, Los Angeles) and Motoko Tabuse (Professor and Honors College Associate, World Languages, Eastern Michigan University) guided the discussion of advocacy and K-16 articulation and led hands-on sessions that focused on topics such as which advocacy methods work best with which stakeholders and preparation for AP and university placement exams.

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Year 14 NCTA Grant Received

This spring EASC received a $305,000 grant from the Freeman Foundation to fund National Consortium for Teaching about Asia (NCTA) seminars for an additional year, Year 14 (2011-12) of the NCTA program. The NCTA program provides introductory, 30-hour Teaching about Asia seminars for middle and high school teachers in the Midwest and South interested in incorporating East Asia into their curricula. For more information about our seminars, see EASC's NCTA Web site.

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IU World Language Festival

In April the Center for Language Technology and Instructional Enrichment hosted the second IU World Language Festival, cosponsored by EALC and EASC. Attended by 185 K-12 teachers, students, and their parents, this biennial event showcased the impressive range of languages taught at IU and gave students a chance to engage in 74 presentations featuring hands-on language and culture learning activities. This year EALC offered six sessions each of Japanese and Chinese, featuring sample language lessons, origami (paper folding), food tasting, musical performances, a fashion show, and other cultural activities. Additionally, the IU Japanese Student Association collected donations for the victims of the earthquake, tsunami, and Fukushima nuclear crisis, which were sent to the Japanese Red Cross Society. To learn more about the World Language Festival, see its Web page.

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Japanese Olympiad of Indiana

The eleventh annual Japanese Olympiad of Indiana was held at Valparaiso University in February, cosponsored by EASC and the Association of Indiana Teachers of Japanese. This competition brought together more than 150 students of Japanese from 15 Indiana high schools to test their knowledge of Japanese language, culture, and history in a fast-paced "Jeopardy"-style competition.

Bloomington High School North won the second-year Japanese competition and placed third in the third- and fourth-year Japanese competitions. Connersville High School won the third-year level, and Chesterton High School and Michigan City High School tied for first at the fourth-year level. In addition to competing in the Japanese Olympiad, participants took part in a variety of cultural activities, including watching Japanese movies, learning origami, making crafts, and learning Japanese games.

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NCTA Enrichment Event on "Buddhism in China and Tibet"

In February fifteen K-12 teachers from around Indiana participated in an all-day enrichment event in Bloomington titled "Buddhism in China and Tibet" hosted by EASC's National Consortium for Teaching about Asia (NCTA) program and the Inner Asian and Uralic National Resource Center. The day began with a simulcast lecture on Chinese Buddhism by Stephen Teiser (Religion, Princeton University), which was part of the "Belief Systems and Religions in East Asia: A Series of Collaborative Simulcast Broadcasts for K-12 Teachers" coordinated by Columbia University's Asia for Educators program. In the afternoon Richard Nance (Religious Studies) gave a presentation on Tibetan Buddhism and led a tour of the Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center and the Kumbum Chamtse Ling Temple in Bloomington.

Funded by the Freeman Foundation, the goal of EASC's annual NCTA enrichment event is to enhance teaching and learning about East Asia for K-12 teachers, including alumni of our NCTA Teaching about Asia seminars.

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Global Indiana's China Tours

In March Global Indiana sponsored a Key Educational Leaders trip to China. The eleven-day tour, known as "China Wave VIII," was Global Indiana's eighth such trip to China since 2006. Wave trips build partnerships between K-12 schools in Indiana and schools in Zhejiang Province, Indiana's sister state in China. Since the trips began, 79 Indiana schools, including Westlane Middle School and Crooked Creek and Robey elementary schools in Indianapolis, Clinton Central Elementary School in Michigantown, and several schools in Lafayette, have been matched with Chinese partner schools, resulting in student exchanges. East Noble Schools, DeKalb Schools, Bartholomew County Schools, Lafayette Schools, and Evansville Schools participated in this spring's trip.

The Wave IX trip is scheduled for October 2011. Central office administrators and building principals are eligible to apply. Participants are required to create an Asian studies class or unit, and, ideally, to implement Chinese language instruction in their schools. K-12 educators interested in participating in future trips should contact Phil Boley, President of Global Indiana, at or Chris McGrew, President-Elect, at

Also, in June Global Indiana will lead its first study tour to China for K-12 educators, including stops in Shanghai, Hangzhou, Guilin, Yangshuo, and Beijing. Unlike the China Wave trips, this professional development trip does not require the participation of school administrators to create a partnership link. With recruitment assistance from EASC and the National Consortium for Teaching about Asia, educators from seven states will take part in the tour, led by Global Indiana officer Becky Burton. Becky is the exchange coordinator from the Orchard School in Indianapolis and has extensive experience leading study tours to Africa, Japan, and China.

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