Its all Japanese at Kinross High

30th March 2001 at 01:00
Onko-chisin - the Japanese belief that respect for bygone customs helps understand the new - is hitting Kinross High with the force of a bullet train. Until June the art department is masterminding "The Japan Experience", an introduction to the country's culture in all its manifestations.

It is the brainchild of art teacher Pauline Murray who has been preparing the extravaganza for nine months. Two years ago she was selected to join a study group organised by the Japan Foundation, whose role is similar to the British Council's. Each year 10 UK teachers join 60 others from across the globe on a fortnight's all-expenses paid trip. Successful applicants have to demonstrate an established interest in Japan reflected in their teaching.

Pauline Murray devloped her interest while teaching at Blairgowrie High. She was planning a Japan week there before her move last year to Kinross, where her new head of department "has been extremely supportive. We have done a bit of training - she can make an origami crane and a frog now and has even agreed to wear yukata (a summer kimono)."

Their origami skills will be tested when the department visits the feeder primaries of Fossoway, Cleish and Portmoak, while S1-S2 pupils are sampling green tea and Japanese food over a week in which they'll also try calligraphy and printmaking. Included in the venture is an email link with a Japanese junior high school.

Applications are invited for the study tour in September-October. (Tel: 0207 499 4726 for details).

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