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The Japan Webpage Contest for Schools 2014-15
The Japan Foundation & SOAS Language and Culture Course (Beginner Level) - Term 2 new
Potential of Japanese Language Education in Primary Schools - Public Seminar new
JF@London Anime & Gaming Con new
Japan Conference for Schools 2015
Metamorphosis of Japan After the War new
The Tenth Japanese Speech Contest for University Students
J-Basic Online for Teachers
It’s a Wrap: Japanese furoshiki past and present
The Modern Lens: International Photography and the Tate collection

The Japan Webpage Contest for Schools 2014-15   org

The Japan Webpage Contest for Schools will be running again in 2014-15, and is now open for applications!

We know that many schools are teaching Japanese or doing other projects about Japan, and we want to hear more about it.

This contest is open to any UK school that is teaching Japanese or doing any kind of project related to Japan. Your school does not need to be teaching Japanese to enter the contest.

To enter the contest, all you need to do is make a simple webpage about the work that your school is doing with Japanese or Japan. This could be a blog, a wiki, or a page that's part of your school's website.

The tentative schedule for the webpage contest is as follows:

  • Deadline to enter the contest January 12th 2015
  • Short-listed schools announced Mid January 2015 
  • Online public voting February 2015
  • Announcement of contest winners Monday 2nd March 2015
  • Presentation Evening and Award Ceremony March 2015

NOW OPEN FOR APPLICATIONS! For details on how to apply please visit the official Japan Webpage Contest for Schools website at . It's also full of tips, hints and entries from previous contests.

To subscribe for updates about the contest, please submit a “Register Your Interest” form here. By registering your interest, you will be the first to know about all the updates and latest information about the contest. 

Date: 15 May 2014 - 31 March 2015
Download JWCS14-Flyer2sides(lowres)

This contest is supported by the Association for Language Learning (ALL), the British Council, the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation, and the Japan Society.



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The Japan Foundation & SOAS Language and Culture Course (Beginner Level) - Term 2   org

Term 2 of our popular Japanese language & culture course is now open for enrolment!

The Japan Foundation & SOAS Language and Culture Course (Beginner Level) is a new kind of course for beginners (JF Standard for Japanese Language Education A1 Breakthrough) of Japanese. It is based on the JF Standard for Japanese Language Education, rather than traditional methods of language education that focus on grammar and sentence structure. The aim of the course will be to use Japanese language skills to get to know people, visit restaurants and take part in many other Japan-related events. At the end of every lesson, participants will be able to perform specific, practical tasks in Japanese.

The course will not focus on language alone; learning Japanese culture will also be an important element in the lessons. The course will incorporate videos, games and media that will help you to learn about Japan and to give you the opportunity to use your new Japanese skills outside of the classroom. You will also have access to the supplementary MARUGOTO+ Japanese Learning websiteThis course is perfect for beginners of Japanese who would like to use their new language skills in practical situations and really connect with Japanese society.

  • Term 2 Dates: 15th January 2015 – 19th March 2015 (every Thursday)19:00 - 21:00
  • Course Leader: Mr Shinichiro Okajima, SOAS Language Centre
  • Venue: SOAS, University of London 
  • Course Fee: £330 per term, including course textbook and materials 

I liked the pace of the course and was surprised we learned hiragana and katakana [Japanese writing] so quickly. As it was an introductory course, I felt the balance was right for people who were complete beginners  and self-studying students like myself who had a little bit of language under my belt already. I certainly feel, after learning about ordering food, that I would be able to do this in Japan.” - JP Rutter, former course participant.

For more information to book your place please click here to visit the SOAS website.

For full information about the course timetable, future term dates etc. please download the flier below.

Date: 15 January 2015 - 19 March 2015 from 7.00pm

Download JpLangCult 2014-2015
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Potential of Japanese Language Education in Primary Schools - Public Seminar   org

Dr. Seiji Fukushima
, Chief Language Advisor, Japan Foundation London will talk about the possibilities of Japanese language education, which integrates cultural education, intercultural citizenship education and cross-curricular education, based on education practice at a primary school in West London. Making good use of the differences between Japan and the UK, it is possible to encourage children to keep learning and to create positive attitudes towards learning itself, which is crucial for citizens in a knowledge-based society. 

Joining Fukushima in discussion will be Dr. Lid King, Director, The Languages Company 

This will be Dr Fukushima’s final event in the UK after his last 4 years researching and teaching in London. We hope you will join us for the reception after the event to give you the chance to say goodbye.

Admission: free
Date: 20th January 2015
Time: 6:30- 8:00 followed by a drinks reception
Venue: 20 Bedford Way, London, WC1H 0AL
Apply: Click here to apply online or e-mail to reserve your place. 

Date: 20 January 2015 from 12.00am

The Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way, London, WC1H 0AL

Click here to apply online or e-mail to reserve your place. 

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JF@London Anime & Gaming Con   org

The Japan Foundation will be at London Anime & Gaming Con on 7th and 8th February 2015.

Visit our stand for information about studying Japanese, freebies and the chance to enter our quiz and win some great prizes!

What's more, we will be giving a short Japanese taster session and a presentation on the resources and support available for Japanese language learners. This will take place on the Saturday from 4pm on the Downstairs Stage.

Booking details and more information about the convention, which is organised by Anime League, can be found on the official website,

Date: 7 February 2015 - 8 February 2015 from 10.30am

London Metropolitan University, 166-220 Holloway Road, London N7 8DB

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Japan Conference for Schools 2015   org

This one-day conference is organised by the Japan Society, the Japan Foundation and the Embassy of Japan. The conference is free to attend, and open to schools or local authorities that are new to Japan work, schools implementing Japanese into the curriculum, those involved with partnerships in Japan and schools looking to enhance or develop an existing programme of Japan-related study. The aim is for people to network and share practical ideas about introducing Japan and Japanese in their schools. It also aims to give experienced schools ideas on taking their Japanese activities further.

To provisionally book your place on the course please click here

Fee: Free (Registration required)
Lunch will be provided on the day

Date: 3 March 2015

Venue: The Embassy of Japan
101-104 Piccadilly
London W1J 7JT 

To provisionally book your place on the course please click here

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Metamorphosis of Japan After the War   org

In 1945, postwar Japan made a new start from the ashes of devastation, and, in the twenty years leading up to the Tokyo Olympics of 1964, it succeeded in undergoing a dramatic transformation, embarking on a path towards becoming an economic power.

These two decades constituted a period truly brimming with creative energy – a time in which democracy led to the restoration of vitality through free photographic expression and in which new talent pioneered postwar photography.

This new exhibition looks back on this turbulent period that followed the war, exhibiting over 100 black and white photographs by 11 leading artists of postwar Japan photography, including Yasuhiro Ishimoto, Shomei Tomatsu, Eikoh Hosoe and Ken Domon. Rather than arranging the works by period and author, this exhibition is divided into three sections - "The Aftermath of the War," "Between Tradition and Modernity," and "Towards a New Japan."

Although the arrangement may seem arbitrary, the sequence in fact provides a vivid narrative of the convoluted aspects of this complicated era.

Date: 22 January 2015 - 26 April 2015

Open Eye Gallery, Liverpool

For more information, please click here.

Image: Shigeichi Nagano, Completing management training at a stock brokerage firm. Ikebukuro. Tokyo 1961

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The Tenth Japanese Speech Contest for University Students   org

Applications for this contest are now closed.

This contest gives students the chance to make their voices heard in Japanese, and win some fantastic prizes including a return air ticket to Japan! Finalists will all perform their speeches on Saturday 28th February 2015 at Regent’s University London

:: Contest Aims
The main purpose of the event is to improve the speaking and presentation skills of students studying Japanese as a foreign language. Through this event, we hope to promote Japanese language learning at higher education level in the UK and Ireland. The contest is organised by the British Association for Teaching Japanese as a Foreign Language (BATJ) and the Japan Foundation, London.

:: Who can apply?
The contest is aimed at undergraduate students who are currently studying Japanese as a foreign language at a university in the UK or Ireland. Postgraduate students are not eligible. Candidates with Japanese parents are welcome to apply. Please see the files below for full eligibility criteria. Please note that First Prize winners from previous years will not be able to enter the same category again this year.There are three different categories:

  • Speech Category: Students take part in this category as individuals, and are free to choose their speech topic. The Speech Category is for those who are studying Japanese as either a degree or non-degree course at a including an elective, optional or other university-based language course.
  • Individual Presentation Category: Students take part in this category as individuals. The Individual Presentation Category is aimed at those studying Japanese at post beginner level. Participants will give a PowerPoint presentation using Japanese. The aim of the presentation is to introduce a particular theme to the audience, for example a region, event, custom, etc. from the UK or another country outside Japan.
  • Group Presentation Category: Aimed at those studying Japanese at beginner level. Participants will take part in groups of two to four students and give a PowerPoint presentation using Japanese. The aim of the presentation is to introduce a particular theme to the audience, for example a region, event, custom, etc. from the UK or another country outside Japan. All groups which are selected to present during the finals day will be given a special award.

:: Prizes
Just some of the fantastic prizes awarded at this contest include a digital camera, a PC, and a return air ticket to Japan plus a Japan Rail Pass! Download the contest flyer below for full details on the prizes

:: Application Deadlines:

Speech Category: 11th November 2014

Individual and Group Presentation Categories: 25th November 2014

Please see below for the contest flyer, FAQ and application forms for each category.

(If you are a university teacher or student and you would like the Japan Foundation to send you paper copies of the flyers to your university, please contact us).

This contest is generously sponsored by:
Baker & McKenzie LLP ・Bloomberg L.P.・Central Japan Railway Company・Eikoku News Digest ・Gendai Travel・ The Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation ・Japan Airlines・Japan Centre・JP-Books (JPT Europe) Ltd・Mitsubishi Electronic B.V.・Regent's University, London・Ricoh UK Ltd・Toshiba of Europe Ltd 

Date: 25 September 2014 - 25 November 2014

Regent's University London

Download 2014_FAQ
Download Rules and guidance - Speech Category
Download Presentation Category - Submitting your presentation
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J-Basic Online for Teachers   org

This online course is for teachers with a basic level of Japanese who would like to build up their language skills. Through the course, you will develop a basic working knowledge of Japanese grammatical structures and build up your confidence and skills in using Japanese effectively in your classroom.  This course is provided by the Japan Foundation Sydney.

Course fee: approx. £75 - £120 (Depending on language level and exchange rate)

Who can sign up?
Any teacher residing in the UK, Australia or New Zealand who has a basic knowledge of Japanese, and can read hiragana and katakana.

What level of Japanese is it suitable for?
Four stages are available. We recommend you take the “level check test” to make sure you choose the best level for you. Stage 1 (the easiest) is suitable for those who know hiragana and katakana.  Stage 4 (the hardest) is about the same level as N5 (old Level 4) of the JLPT.

How does the course work?
Every week a new unit is uploaded. You will work through the unit at your own pace, and then complete your homework by the end of each week. Your homework will be marked and returned to you with helpful advice and comments from our Japanese Language Advisor. 

Feedback from previous participants:

“I have really enjoyed it, the course content is useful as covers all areas of the Japanese language i.e. speaking, listening, reading, writing – lots of writing practice which is a challenge but good practice!”

“I really, really like the Production task, especially as you get some prompt feedback from the Language Advisor. Brilliant!”

Remaining 2014-15 Dates 

  • Holiday Session: 24 November – 23 January 2015.
Session 1: 3 February – 28 March 2014
Session 2: 31 March – 23 May 2014
Session 3: 26 May – 18 July 2014
Session 4: 21 July – 12 September 2014
Session 5: 15 September– 7 November 2014

Session 6: 24 November 2014 -23 January 2015


 For more information and to enrol, please go to

Date: 3 February 2014 - 23 January 2015
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It’s a Wrap: Japanese furoshiki past and present   JPsupported

The Rugby Art Gallery and Museum presents a new large scale exhibition focusing on furoshiki, a square shaped piece of cloth used for wrapping and carry different types of merchandise or gifts. Featuring loans of textiles from museum collections in the UK and pieces not seen in the UK before from collections in Japan, the exhibition explores the cultural significance and origins of furoshiki, as well as its application today as an eco-friendly alternative to plastic bags and expensive gift wrapping.

Date: 20 September 2014 - 10 January 2015

Rugby Art Gallery and Museum

For more information, please click here.

Image credit: Cotton material, indigo dyed Shindigo shibori, 900 x 900. 2007. Commissioned by Brighton Museum & Art Gallery from HIROYUKI Shindo © Royal Pavilion & Museums, Brighton & Hove

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The Modern Lens: International Photography and the Tate collection   JPsupported

The Modern Lens: International Photography and the Tate Collection is an exhibition surveying key developments in international photography from the 1920s to the 1960s. The exhibition - the largest display of photographic works ever to be exhibited at the gallery - will uncover the sense of curiosity and experimentation as artists harnessed the medium in new ways. In addition to including artists from across Europe and the Americas, the exhibition will also feature work by pioneering Japanese artists Shoji Hamada, Kiyohiko Komura, Shikanosuke Yagaki and Iwao Yamawaki.

Date: 14 October 2014 - 10 May 2015

Tate St Ives

For more information, please click here.

Image: Shikanosuke Yagaki, Still Life 1930 or 1939
© Reserved. 

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