One of the best ways to learn a foreign language is by taking part in practical activities and being a part of the community. Akita Inaka school in Kosaka town, Akita Prefecture, in Japan’s Tohoku region, does just that.
Not only do you learn useful Japanese in the mornings, you can enjoy the beautiful peaceful nature of the countryside after lessons. Explore the local area during your free time and use your Japanese by joining in local festivals, pottery classes or sporting events which are organized by the local community.
Now is a great time to take advantage of the course, especially for foreign families living in big cities in Japan and who are unable to go abroad due to the pandemic. Why not check out the warm hospitality and beautiful nature of Akita, and learn Japanese at the same time?
Rich in nature, visiting Kosaka is like stepping into a Ghibli movie with its breathtaking surroundings. It is beautiful any time of the year and the quiet environment is perfect for learning.
People from all around the world can apply to learn Japanese at Akita Inaka school. The two-week courses — ideal for families or groups — focus on learning practical conversational Japanese, with mini lessons on local culture. Activities are offered after school and on weekends.
The family or private group course (for up to six members) is designed for those who would like to tailor various activities with more personalized Japanese lessons. You can also choose the dates to take the course (with some exceptions). In this way, it creates an opportunity for the group to become more involved in the community, getting to know Japanese families and their culture.
Lessons take place in an authentic Japanese classroom from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday to Friday. The course is focused on learning practical conversational Japanese to help prepare you for real life situations. Events are organized after classes and on some weekends so students can practice what they have learned in class in real life.
Activities include hiking, railbike ride, cooking Japanese food, visiting hidden onsens, interacting with Japanese students and residents, cycling through the beautiful mountainous scenery and rice fields, woodcraft/wood burning, fruit and vegetable picking, playing with Akita dogs, pottery, calligraphy, wine-tasting tour, kabuki and visits to beautiful natural scenery such as Lake Towada and Oirase Gorge. Optional activities include kabuki theater, tea ceremony and trying on a kimono in a traditional samurai house, making bento boxes, pottery and calligraphy and a wine-tasting tour.
The next courses are in winter 2021 (Feb 1-26). Highlights are the Towada Winter Festival, a one-night farm stay, onsen visit, tea ceremony, kimono wearing, bonfire night and a visit to snow monster sculptures at Mt Moriyoshi. Optional activities include skiing and snowboarding.
Here is footage from the 2020 winter course.
Total cost for the 2-week course: 770,000 yen. Transport to/from the Odate Noshiro Airport provided, transport to/from the school provided, transport for all the included activities provided.
The price above does not include flights and accommodation.
A Japanese style tatami house in the center of town is available for 100,000 yen during the two-week course for a group of up to six people.
For other courses, please click here.
To apply, click here.
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