Japanese Hina Doll Making

DSCF3650We had a very special day today learning all about and making Hina Matsuri Dolls. Eito’s mother Chiharu and Riko’s mother Shiori prepared all the materials for us to make the dolls in the morning. We started making the dolls by firstly taking 2 pieces of felt to make the kimono section of the doll. The two pieces were blue/yellow for the boys kimono and pink/yellow for the girls. Onto the pieces of felt we used white DSCF3654glue to attach lots of sparkly shapes and foam stickers. They soon looked really pretty. We each had 2 photos for the dolls, one of ourselves and the other of one of the teachers or our siblings in buds or petals class. Each of them needed a head decoration and so we glued these on at the same time. DSCF3658The heads were then attached to a lollipop stick and glued inside a small plastic bottle. The felt that we decorated for the kimono earlier was then wrapped around the small bottle to complete the figures. Our next task was to make the golden fan decoration to go behind the ‘Hina’ dolls. We used a sheet of gold origami paper and then folded it back and forth concertina style to make a fan shape. To hold the shape in the middle we used a DSCF3661piece of sticky tape. The Hina dolls were then placed on a red felt board and the fan was glued on behind them along with our own name plate. We have put them on display in the classroom and they look fantastic. Please take a look DSCF3662when you get a moment. Shiori and Chiharu then introduced us to Jinbei and Kimono’s. We got lots of information such as; Kimonos are usually made of silk, cotton or wool. Jinbei are a single layer summer festival item while kimonos are several layers. Jinbei also have no buttons or zips on them at all. When wearing a kimono the front overlap is usually called ‘Migi-Mae’ which means ‘right first’ and is the way to wear them correctly. There is only 1 time when the kimono is worn the opposite DSCF3664way and that is for funerals. Shiori then read us a great book called ‘Moon Princess’. This was a great story about a bamboo cutter and his wife who discover a small girl DSCF3667inside a piece of cut bamboo. The girl lives with them for four years and grows up. One day she seems very unhappy while sitting staring at the moon. She explains that she was sent to earth and has to return. Her earth mother and father are unhappy that she has to leave. The princess in the story could be seen wearing a very old style kimono with 12 layers. It must have been very heavy. We then posed for a group photo in our Jinbei and Kimonos. We all looked very DSCF3676good in the pictures. Shiori very kindly donated a book in sheets called a DSCF3684‘kamishibai’ to the school all about why the Hina dolls are set up each year. Nanako very kindly read the special book to the children after snack time today. Thank you Shiori for the book, it is wonderful. In circle time we started by singing the song “love is something if you give it away”. We then looked at a world map and saw some of the countries we have visited so far in flowers class. On the map of Asia Tokutaro easily found Japan. We then noticed that Japan has water all around it and so it is called an island. We also noticed how some countries don’t have water all around them so they are not islands. We also saw on the map some water in the middle of the land which Jennifer identified as lakes. We looked at lots of different flags and were very successful at naming the countries they came from and also saying ‘hello’ in English, Tagalog, Spanish, French, DSCF3687DSCF3692German and Chinese. We found the Japan flag and Riko, Tokutaro and Lucinda put our special ribbon flight path on the big wall map to show where we have been. We set up our airplane on the carpet area and headed back to Japan. After getting off the plane we got our passports stamped by the immigration officers Nile and Noa. Coming to the table we played a team group game using some pieces of string, some elastic bands and some paper cups. To play this game we needed to make 2 teams and we decided on the names dolphin team and flowers team. We used the elasic bands and string to lift the cups up and place them on top of one DSCF3693another as quickly as we could. There were 6 cups and the score was tied on 2 points each. We will try this again soon to see which team works together the best. Have a great afternoon.

All our love, Darren, Ayaka and Nanako