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Report on “The Poster Session for High School Students in Kyoto University” (2nd year students in the Course of Inquiry on Humanities and Social Sciences)

photo1  On Saturday March 17th, 2018, three of our 2nd year students in the Course for Inquiry on Humanities and Social Sciences participated in a session held at Kyoto University. The purpose of this opportunity was for high school students to display their everyday research activity results to the public beyond prefectural and school boundaries. This was the first commemoration session.

 Our students presented their research focusing on onomatopoeia, the sound as a language and their meaning, titled “Tappuri Jikkuri – the relation between the sound and meaning in food advertisements.”

 “Tappuri” and “jikkuri” in the title were the most frequently used onomatopoeia in the food advertisements that they looked at. In their research, they sorted them by characteristics, and picked out those most frequently used. Then they looked at their consonants and analyzed them, considering the characteristics of their meaning.

 In the session, 62 groups from all over Japan gathered together, with a huge variety of subjects such as AI, the human genome, population decline issues, revitalization of agriculture, Nihon Shoki (the ancient writing of Japan), and SNS. Every group shared their enthusiasm for their research through presentation, and our three students also delivered a passionate presentation to the audience. This excellent opportunity was improved further by the very active Q and A which added value to the student’s experience.

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The Intercultural Understanding Class inviting JICA Hokuriku region researchers and ALTs

     On February 15th (Thursday), 2018, 43 of the second graders in the Course for Inquiry on Natural Science had interaction sessions in English with the invited instructors of six JICA Hokuriku regional researchers who are working at Kanazawa or Fukui Universities from Myanmar, Nigeria, Tanzania, and Afghanistan, and two Toyama ALTs from New Zealand and Ireland.

     The students were split into six groups and each group interacted with instructors from two different countries. In the sessions, after the self-introduction of themselves and their countries, they exchanged their opinions on the themes defined by each group such as “the national character as seen from the instructors’ job in their university,” “water,” “welfare and medical-care,” “education,” and “food, clothes, and housing”. After the sessions, the students summarized what had been discussed in a poster form, and shared it among all participants. The students had valuable experiences by getting direct information from the instructors which could not be obtained through the Internet, being inspired by them, and continuing the dialogue after being asked unexpected questions by the instructors. The poster presentation was led by the students who participated in the overseas training program was and carried out very well in English.

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Utilizing the skills learned through the Overseas Training Program at the ”Internet Communication Experience”

Internet Communication 1    On February 13th (Tuesday), 2018, 35 of the second grade students in the Course for Inquiry on Humanities and Social Sciences participated in the Internet Communication Experience. From December 7th to 15th, the 4th Overseas Training had been held, and this Internet Communication Experience was one of the follow-up training programs.

     The invited speaker was Mr. Ryan Choi, who had graduated from an American high school and college, and then worked globally, and is now preparing to start his own business in his mother country, South Korea. Through google hangout, we connected our classroom to Ms. Sano in London (a graduate of our school who introduced Ryan) and Ryan himself at his location in Singapore.

Internet Communication 2     After Ryan’s self-introduction, the students were split into five groups of seven students and they enthusiastically asked him questions such as “What influenced you most in your American life?” and “What made you go to American high school?”. Then, each group presented in English about their research of individuals, groups, or corporations who operate internationally, and considered ‘required talent for global human resources.’ Ryan gave them his comments afterwards, such as “Your ideas were simple and easy to understand.” or “The presentation was clear to hear.”

     Ms. Sano in London praised the students, saying, “The presentation was very well done with the overseas training results.” and “The students understood most of Ryan’s English speech.” Those comments encouraged the students in their English learning.


2017 Research Presentation at our school

 Research Presentation 1    On January 25th (Thursday), 2018, Research Presentation was held at our school with the first graders in the Course for Inquiry and the second graders in the General Course and the teachers, together with invited Toyama University and Toyama Prefectural University professors, and also high school teachers from in and out Toyama prefecture.

     The presentation was carried out in poster session style, and after each group’s abstract presentation, they had an active Q&A exchange.

Research Presentation 2     After the poster session, a comprehensive session was carried out among the students of the first and second grade in the Course for Inquiry, the university professors, and the advisory teachers. The university professors gave their comments on the themes and advised them on their attitude toward their themes. Then the first grader representative made a commitment for the next year session, followed by the second grader representative’s speech on what they had learned through their research, and finally they gave their juniors encouraging words, handing the baton to them.

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The debriefing session of the “4th Overseas Training”

Debriefing 1     On January 19th (Friday), 2018, the debriefing session of the “4th Overseas Training” was carried out in Keisetsukan Hall for all the first and second graders in the Course for Inquiry.

     After the lead teacher introduced the schedule and training outline, a video from their presentations in America was shown. Their refined presentation demonstrated their progress in their research. Then, small groups consisting of one overseas training participant and several non-participants of the first and second graders were formed, and two sets of 10-minute debriefing sessions changing the presenter were carried out.

Debriefing 2   In the session, they talked about what they learned overseas or the discussion with the Harvard University students, their hard time in their home stay experiences, and their own mistakes. The audience asked questions actively and shared what they had learned and discovered from the overseas training.



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Three School Joint Research Presentation Meeting

 Three School 1    On December 23rd (Saturday), 2017, Three School Joint Research Presentation Meeting among Toyama High school, Toyama Chubu High School, and Takaoka High School was carried out in the Toyama International Conference Center. In addition to the second grade students in the Course for Inquiry from the three schools who were presenting, an audience of over 1000 first graders, teachers, and parents, and other high school students from Toyama prefecture and others from all over Japan attended, and tightly packed into the hall.

 Three School 2    At the opening session, the representative teams from the three schools made a presentation on stage. Our school’s representative research group made a presentation on “Consumer Psychology ~Grabbing the Customers’ Heart~”. In the Q&A session, they asked questions to each other leading to high quality exchanges. In the following poster session, they went through their presentation and Q and A where not only the high school students but also the general audience asked sharp questions, which impacted the presenters profoundly to deepen their themes further. Also, for the first time, an exchange session was carried out among the second graders from the three schools during lunch time.

Three School 3     This was the 7th Three School Joint Research Presentation Meeting, and the first graders are expected to present on their own themes, selecting them by themselves, taking their seniors’ presentations into account.  


Research presentation at “Northeast Asian Conference on Environmental Cooperation Symposium”

Symposium 1    On December 21st (Thursday), 2017, the “Northeast Asian Conference on Environmental Cooperation Symposium” was held in the Toyama International Conference Center, and the four second graders in the research group NOWPAP presented on their research to raise awareness about marine environmental preservation and the risk of micro plastic, titled “Save Our Ocean”.


Symposium 2     The symposium started with a greeting speech by the Toyama governor, Mr. Ishii, followed by a keynote speech on international cooperation, each regional activity center’s report on their work, and a speech by a Toyama Graduate University professor, simultaneously translated in Japanese and English, made us contemplate the issue of marine environmental preservation. Both the presenters and the observing students seemed to have learned and realized a lot.


The Intercultural Understanding Class “Let’s talk to people from various countries!”

Intercultural Photo 1     On December 11th (Monday), 2017, at Keisetsukan Hall, the Intercultural Understanding Class was carried out for the 2nd grade students in the General Course. A total of five Toyama University overseas students and three ALTs from Albania, Malaysia, Ireland, Indonesia, Canada, Ukraine and the USA, were invited as instructors. The students were divided into eight booths, and made introductory presentations about Japanese culture and education to the instructors. In the Q and A session, they asked about each instructor’s county, or gave them more details on what they had presented, and deepened their conversation. In each group, they used brochures, photos, plush dolls or even kelp rice balls to help explain their themes, and so a friendly atmosphere filled the hall. The students spoke quietly at the beginning, but the instructors listened to them intently and patiently, and spoke in easy English, which helped the students relax and speak up. Since they communicated actively with some gestures or demonstration, the whole session was very active. 

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Student Presentations from the 4rd Overseas Training 2017

Please click below to read student presentations.

Group Report (PDF)


The Diary of the 4th Overseas Training

Day1 : December 7th

   We all gathered at Shin-Takaoka station on time. Our trip started! We went to Narita airport, and boarded the plane. After about a 12-hour flight, at last, we arrived in Boston! I felt excited but a little nervous. I met my host mother at the airport. After talking with my host mother I was relieved because she was a very kind and open-hearted woman. I couldn’t listen to and speak English well, but I tried to talk a lot. I would do my best!

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Day2 : December 8th

I was impressed by the beautiful view of Boston. Harvard square was so big!! Before noon, we had the students of Harvard University guide us on a campus tour. They were very kind, friendly, and easy to talk to, so I was able to understand a lot about the history of Harvard University.

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 In the presentation class, I learned about grammar and structure. I found that discourse markers like “on the other hand” and “however” help us to make our audience understand what we want to say more easily.

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Day 3: December 9th

   Today, we practiced our presentation for the second time in the morning. Our group leader was Andy. He was a very cool man, and we enjoyed talking with him so much. First of all, he corrected our presentation scripts. He said that our script had a lot of confusing expressions, so we had to use more simple and specific ones. We learned that we should use expressions which can attract our audience and prevent them from being perplexed in order to tell the content accurately.

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   After that, we practiced speaking in front of other groups. We weren’t able to memorize the whole script. Then, Andy advised us that we shouldn’t memorize it perfectly because we cannot perform well if we focus on the script too much.

 In the afternoon, we had a chance to have a concert. First, we listened to Kawai Yohei’s speech in English. He is a Japanese oboe player. He had come to the U.S. after graduating from junior high school so as to learn deeply about American-style oboe. In his presentation, he told us many impressive ideas. For one thing, he said, “Why did you come here?” This is a very simple question, but thanks to that, I realized the aim of this program again, and felt that I had to try harder. I greatly appreciate his giving us good motivation. Next, we listened to a quintet which Kawai belongs to. Most of the members were about 20 years old. That means they are almost the same age as us. I was moved and impressed by their music. Finally, a cellist named Fang played several tunes. He was 17 years old and a high school student. His performance was really passionate and showed that he loves cello very much. After the performance, he told us his big future plan. I couldn’t believe that he is the same age as us. Today was the day when we were so motivated. We will never forget this lesson.

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Day 4: December 10th

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     Today was a holiday with my host mother. We had breakfast as usual, and then went to a grocery store in order to prepare for Tuesday’s dinner, okonomiyaki. After lunch we went out for sightseeing in Boston. Buildings in Boston were very gorgeous; beautiful and old. I had hot chocolate there. I liked it very much. After that I bought souvenirs. Then, we went skating. It was difficult for me but really exciting! This holiday became an unforgettable day for me.

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Day 5: December 11th

 In the morning we visited MIT! Most of MIT’s buildings were modern, and they were quite different from those of Harvard. The activity there was a lecture about the Internet. It was a little bit difficult for me because I had only a limited knowledge of the Internet, so I couldn’t answer the professor’s questions. After the lecture, I became interested in the Internet and decided to study a lot after I return home.

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 In the afternoon we corrected our draft with the help of Harvard students, and talked with each other about whether we should stop selling pain killers or not. I thought that not only in companies, but also in hospitals, all of us have to think about this issue more seriously.

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Day 6: December 12th

 Today was the last day in Boston. We gave our presentations. I got so nervous, but I did my best. What was worse, the video I had prepared didn’t work well, so I was disappointed. However, I learned a lot from Harvard University students and had a good time there. In the afternoon, we went to “Clover Lab”. We ate a vegetarian lunch. It was more delicious than I had thought. After going back home, we had a special party at night. I enjoyed a delicious dinner with my host mother, her share mate, and two dogs. I was really happy!

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Day 7: December 13th

 In the morning, we took a bus from Boston to New York, which took about 5 hours. I was a little sad because the program in Boston had finished. However, I was excited because we visited New York, saw the Statue of Liberty, and joined a tour of the UN. I was impressed by really seeing things which I had seen on TV. In the evening, we had a dinner with the members of the association of people from Toyama. I was able to get lots of precious experiences from their talk, and I had really a good time.

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Day 8 and 9: December 14th and 15th

Day 8 Photo 1 We left Watson Hotel in New York at 7:30 and arrived at JFK airport. We had a traffic jam, so we had little time to buy souvenirs at the airport. After departure procedures, we left America. Our flight was delayed a little because of snow.

It was a 14-hour flight. We spent our time in the plane watching movies, sleeping, studying and so on. The in-flight meals were very delicious. There was soba on the menu. I was very happy because I wanted to eat Japanese food. We were also able to eat ice cream. It was Häagen-Dazs! I was surprised and happy.

  We arrived at Narita airport at about 16:30. I felt at ease because we were able to come back to Japan safely. Then, we took the Narita Express and Shinkansen. We arrived at Shin-Takaoka Station at about 22:00. Our parents and many teachers came to meet us. Mr. Kawaguchi made a speech in the closing ceremony. I saw my family after a long time. I heard that my family had worried about me. I was glad to hear that.

   We learned a lot of things through this trip. I will never forget this experience!

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Participating in “Futaba Future School JICA Global Camp 2017”

     On December 6th (Wednesday) and 7th (Thursday), 2017, two students of the first graders from the Course for Inquiry attended “Futaba Future School JICA Global Camp 2017sponsored by Fukushima prefectural Futaba Future School, which is an SGH appointed school. 120 students from Futaba Future School and 13 students from Fukushima prefectural Adachi High School, which is an UNESCO approved school, participated in the class with the goal of “training global leaders for achieving recovery from natural disasters”.

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Report on 2017 National SGH High school Students Forum

Forum photo 1     On November 25th (Saturday), 2017, the National SGH High School Students Forum was held at Pacifico Yokohama in Yokohama city, and four students in the research group NOWPAP from our school attended.

     At the poster session where the students of all SGH schools in Japan participated together, our students proudly presented on their research theme “Save Our Ocean”, and answered the questions sincerely. It seems that every student got something from the even. For example, they got new insight into their presentation, practiced asking questions actively after other schools’ presentation, or got new ideas about good research or good poster presentations.

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 Forum photo 4    After the exchange session among the students, six selected SGH students who were good at English discussed the theme chosen at the site in English. Our students who watched were very much impressed by the six students on stage speaking English, and one of them commented that she also wanted to be able to speak English like that and that the event had strengthened her motivation to learn English.

     It was a very fruitful day, with lots of learning for the students.  


Report on English Debate Contest and English Presentation Contest

[ Debate Contest ]

 presentation photo 1    On September 24th (Sunday), 2017 at Toyama University, the 7th Toyama High School Students’ English Debate Contest was held, in which three teams from our school participated. This year’s proposition was “Japan should significantly relax its immigration policies.” The students had been working on the theme by investigating the topic and preparing their arguments since before last summer break. Though they could not advance to the final tournament, they did their best and could have a feeling of accomplishment.


[ Presentation Contest ]

  presentation photo2   On October 28th (Saturday), 2017 in Toyama Shimin Plaza, the 19th Toyama High School Students’ English Presentation Contest was held, in which six of our students participated; one research team of three students, two students in the recitation section, and one student in the speech section. In the speech section, the student who appealed for world peace in a speech titled “Starting with Ourselves” proudly won the second place, and advanced to the Tokai-Hokuriku block competition. In the recitation section, the student who richly recited “A Telephone Call” won second place. In the research project section, our three students presented their work on marine environmental preservation, and won the incentive award.

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The 4th Overseas Training pre-training session; Reflecting on “Global Citizenship”

 Pre Training Photo 1     On October 2nd (Monday), 2017, 32 of the participating students of the 4th Overseas Training discussed “Global Citizenship” in their pre-training session.

     The instructor was Mr. Jarrod Anthony Clague from Australia. His whole 90-minute speech was carried out in English, but his friendly and good-humored style enchanted the audience so they all enjoyed participating in the pair work and group work sessions. They deepened their understanding of global citizenship by actively discussing questions such as, “What is the definition of a global citizen?”, “What are the essential skills to work globally?”, and listening to the instructor’s own opinion.

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Interim presentation of the Research

Research Photo1     On September 30th (Saturday), 2017, 78 students of the second graders in the Course for Inquiry on Humanities and Social Sciences and the Course for Inquiry on Natural Science carried out the interim presentation of their research in a poster session which they had been working on since April.

     Instructors from Toyama University and Toyama Prefectural College were invited, and gave them lots of suggestions on the content of the themes, poster creation techniques, and presentation skills to help them to improve their further research. Since it was on the school festival, many students of our school or other schools, the parents, and nearby residents came to see it.

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“School Seminar” sponsored by the United Nations Association of Japan Toyama Office

School Seminar Photo1   On August 29th (Tuesday), 2017, “School Seminar,” sponsored by the United Nations Association of Japan Toyama Office was held, and 280 of our first graders attended. The instructor was Ms. Akiko Sagano, the executive director at the Public Interest Foundation Corporation, Foreign Press Center, and she gave a speech titled “Having worked as a diplomat, what are global human resources?”

     She pointed out the importance of public diplomacy based on the idea that the world’s interest in Japanese Manga or Anime would lead to an interest in Japan itself and Japanese language. In an easily understandable speech, she also pointed out the importanSchool Seminar Photo 2ce of polishing up one’s abilities, understanding of foreign culture, and advanced communication skills. Further, she emphasized the importance of knowing about foreign countries as early as possible, ideally before the age of 20.