Wednesday, June 10, 2015

"Begin Japanology" videos we liked

I've mentioned the show "Begin Japanology" (or sometimes "Japanology Plus") several times on other pages, but I thought I'd gather together some of our favorite episodes here. I had never heard of it before this unit, but I'm so happy to have discovered it. I love everything about this show. I love the soft-spoken host Peter Barakan, I love the kind of nerdy music selections, I love the intense focus on the smallest of subjects (e.g. "scissors," "toilets," "chopsticks"), I love the interaction with Japanese shopkeepers and artisans. I love the predictable episode set-up and I LOVE the pleasant, expressive voices of the man and woman who do the voice-overs. I just can't get enough. There seem to be about 300 episodes (plus even more from the newer show; I don't know if there are repeats) and I honestly want to watch every single one of them. I have been working my way through them even though our unit is over now.

And the children loved them too! Here are our favorite episodes we watched together. If I run into any new ones that are especially good, I will add them to this list.

Sampuru or plastic food samples. SO amazing to see how they create this realistic-looking food.

Tokyo Skytree, now one of the tallest towers in the world, and you know how we love tall buildings!

Bonsai. Bonsai are so cool.

Stationery. We are a pen-loving family.

Conveyor Belt Sushi. Maybe our favorite episode of all. We think these are the coolest restuarants ever. So high-tech! We wonder why we don't have anything like this in America? (Or maybe we do, but just not in Utah?)

Miniaturization. Daisy loved this, of course. I wish I could go to Japan just to buy a bunch of miniature things.

Origami. It's so much more than you ever thought.

Shinkansen. We love trains.

Toilets. You will never encounter a more delicate, polite treatment of the subject matter. And Japanese toilets are SO COOL!

Vending Machines. For all sorts of amazing things. Japan is so far ahead of us here!

Cameras. Seb has loved cameras for awhile now. This fueled the fire.

Robots. Couldn't get enough of this, especially since we just learned about robots!

Home Appliances. The high-tech stuff was the children's favorite thing about Japan, in general.

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