To help with our inquiry into culture, the first and second grade classes paid a visit to the National Museum of Ethnology, or Minpaku as it is called in Japanese. The museum has a huge collection of cultural artifacts from around the world and the students spent their time there researching different countries of their choice.
We began by having a snack outside and a short time to run around the rose garden before entering. Once inside, we explored the tough and feel exhibit before starting off in Oceania. The Oceania exhibit was full of things from the south Pacific islands such as traditional sailboats, fishing gear, traditional masks from different island people and even some GIANT stone money! We then moved on to Australia, with its large collection of aboriginal art, didgeridoos and boomerangs.
We continued moving through the Americas with their giant totem poles, and many different types of Native American clothes, from those in the warmer areas of South and Central America, all the way up to the Inuit in the cold frozen North. We made our over to Europe, down through the middle East to Africa and then back over to Asia.
Along the journey the students observed and inquired about everything from African headdresses to Mongolian Yurts! There were all different types of traditional dresses from kimonos, to Belly Dance outfits. They also had a huge musical instrument section with everything from flutes and lutes to Japanese taiko drums.
To record their discoveries, the students recorded their findings by taking notes, and drawing pictures of those that were from the country that they had chosen to research. Once back at school, the students continued their research by finding out more about the different aspects of their chosen countries and presented their findings to the other clsssmates.