KOKOMO, Ind. – A delegation of five Japanese scholars specializing in social studies visited classes at Indiana University Kokomo and around the state this week to gain knowledge of teaching practices and theories.
Masato Ogawa, assistant professor of education at IU Kokomo, hosted three of the five educators on campus who observed Ogawa's elementary social studies methods and secondary social studies methods courses. These researchers are Professor Kotaro Yoshimura, Tohoku Gakuin University; Professor Tatsuya Watanabe, Tokyo Gakugei University; and Professor Takeshi Kamamoto, Okinawa University.
IU Kokomo Chancellor Michael Harris welcomed the group to campus.
"We are very interested in developing educational relationships with you," Harris said. "We hope we will find more ways to work together to provide the best educational experiences for our students in order for them to achieve academic excellence and success, both in the United States and in Japan."
In addition, the group visited the Key Learning Community School in Indianapolis, a well-known school in Japan that has shared information for 15 years. These scholars also visited IU Bloomington and met Drs. Keith Barton and Terrence Mason, who teach social studies methods and philosophies. They discussed the state of social studies education, the trend of social studies education research in the United States, and issues and challenges of teacher professional development in both countries.
Ogawa first met these scholars last October when he was invited to give the keynote address at the annual conference of the Japanese Educational Research Association for the Social Studies (JERASS) at Hirosaki University, Aomori, Japan. He will present recent research trends of social studies education in the United States at the same conference this fall in Kyoto, Japan.
Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.