"Class of Magic" America in the Schools
President of the America-Japan Society
Former Ambassador of Japan to the U.S. 2008-11
America in the schools (AIS) is an amazing program. Japanese people are naturally exposed to different types of America everyday. they feel that they already know a lot about the U.S. American culture is much deeper and much wider than just Hollywood, MLB, Halloween, pop music, Apple, Suta-ba (Starbuckes), or McDonald’s.
“Class of Magic” is designed to teach Japanese elementary school students to learn more about American culture. This is done through introducing a typical day at an elementary school in the States. With this program, Japanese children will surely become more interested in America. They may even think about visiting the U.S. in the future.
So, who created the “Class of Magic”? It is the Japan-America Society of the State of Washington, located in Seattle.
I became attracted to America culture more than 50 years ago. This was when I was in Junior High, in Seattle. It was like a different world to me. I still remember clearly how fascinating everything was that time.
It is my strong wish to make lots of Japanese elementary students experience this magic” by enjoying this program in their classrooms.
Former Ambassador of Japan to the U.S.
Japan Chairman of CULCON
November 2015, during my stay in Seattle, Washington, I was favored with an opportunity to participate in both JIS and AIS. As one Japanese, who spent nearly 50 years since 1960s on alliance management between the US and Japan, liveliness of the class, enthusiasm of teaching staff, commitment of people concerned, in particular, members of the Japan America Society in the State of Washington was truly impressive and encouraging.
The strength of an unprecedentedly successful US/ Japan relationship can only be maintained and advanced by the existence of an effective and innovative people to people lines of communication, which must be constantly renewed and renovated. The key word here is "the early exposure"; the earlier the better.
In this context, I hail the efforts and dedication of people concerned in the State of Washington for their support to make these very precious undertakings of AIS and JIS further successful ones.
Root for AIS and JIS!
U.S. Ambassador to Japan
"America in the Schools" is a groundbreaking initiative that supports goals shared by both Japan and the Ubited States to increase mutual understanding between the youth of our two countries.
The strength of the U.S.-Japan Alliance rests in the friendships that connect our two peoples. We have a responsibility to the next generation to nurture this special partnership, and "America in the Schools" will play an important role in that effort. Youth programs like "America in the Schools" broaden the perpectives of our young people and transform them into the global citizens we need to lead our nations forward.
I want to commend the Japan-America Society of the State of Washington for expanding the network of people-to-people relationships that form the backbone of the U.S.-Japan Alliance. Thank you so much for your support.