Hindi and French are the most popular foreign languages among Japanese students at the Global Indian International School (GIIS) campuses in Tokyo, according to Atul Temurnikar, a leading member of the education sector. Temurnikar, the co-founder and chairman of the Global Schools Foundation in Singapore, which operates GIIS campuses in six countries, said Japanese students are also seeking the best of Asian and Western cultures while preserving their own.
Cultural learning allows Japanese and expatriate students to learn and experience strengths about different cultures, he said, and provides insight into the language learning curriculum of the GIIS, which has 15,000 students on 16 campuses. He gave his opinion on how Hindi, which is being studied in Tokyo, has become a shared cultural identity for many people of the subcontinent who are part of the 30 million Indian diaspora around the world.
Temurnikar shared the experience of a Japanese GIIS student V, who amazed Prime Minister Narendra Modi as he met people during a two-day visit to Japan earlier this week. Ritsuki Kobayashi spoke to Prime Minister Modi in Hindi and asked for his signature on his drawing with descriptions in Hindi, Japanese and English. The Prime Minister replied with a smile.
Temurnikar said Hindi is a popular language choice among Japanese students and is offered from grades 1 to 10 in both curricula, Central Board of Secondary Education and Cambridge IGCSE. He underlined the linguistic diversity of Japanese students and pointed out that Indo-Japanese interpersonal relations go back nearly a century.
The GIIS Tokyo has students of 19 nationalities, with Japanese being the largest cohort. The students learn more than 10 languages, including Hindi, French, Japanese, Sanskrit, Mandarin, Arabic and Tamil. It regularly hosts language festivals around Hindi Diwas, Hindi competitions, Hindi debates and similar celebrations in Japanese culture such as the Japanese tea ceremony, Temurnikar said.
Every student is raised to be a global citizen and students experience the greatest language diversity with more than 10 languages to choose from, he said, developing the language learning curriculum at the GIIS administered by the Singapore-based Global Schools Foundation. which has more than seven international schools under its auspices.
Read all the latest news, breaking news and IPL 2022 Live Updates here.