Middle schools come together with a friendly competition in Iwakuni City

Students from Iwakuni Middle School and Kawashimo Junior High School play an interactive game during a cultural exchange event at Kawashimo Junior High School, Iwakuni City, Japan, Feb. 11, 2020. This annual event allows middle school students from two different cultures to interact with each other.The exchange provided an opportunity for children from the air station to have a friendly competition with local Japanese students. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Triton Lai)
Students from Iwakuni Middle School and Kawashimo Junior High School play an interactive game during a cultural exchange event at Kawashimo Junior High School, Iwakuni City, Japan, Feb. 11, 2020. This annual event allows middle school students from two different cultures to interact with each other.The exchange provided an opportunity for children from the air station to have a friendly competition with local Japanese students. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Triton Lai)

Middle schools come together with a friendly competition in Iwakuni City

by Lance Cpl. Triton Lai
MCAS Iwakuni

Students from Iwakuni Middle School aboard Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni visited Kawashimo Junior High School for a cultural exchange event and a friendly sports competition with local Japanese students in Iwakuni City, Feb. 11, 2020.

The exchange provided events for the children to compete against each other in a friendly competition such as; charades, a costume race and basketball to give an opportunity for the children from the air station and local Japanese community to interact and play games.

This annual event allows middle school students from two different cultures to come together. The event was coordinated by the Kawashimo Junior High School staff and Eugene Clark, director of the Youth and Teen Center on base.

The children split up into four teams designated with different colored jerseys with four team leaders taking charge. They we’re competing for the most points in each event working as a mixed team of children from the air station and local Japanese students.

Clark who has been working with the Youth and Teen center for more than 20 years, said the junior high school is close to base, so it is very important that we try to interact as much as we can to continue having a good relationship with our neighbors.

At the end of the event, the children tallied up the points from each game and awarded 1st, 2nd and 3rd places with medals. Just like in the Olympics each team that placed received a gold, silver or bronze medal, but with chocolate inside.

“The Youth and Teen Center is a great program,” said Clark. “I would like to see it continue to grow and keep doing more events like this in the future.”

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