About Kataribe Juniors
Kataribe means "guide" in Japanese. The Let's Kataribe project started on April 18th, 2018 as part of the local revitalization project held in the Mio area. Currently 17 students called "Kataribe juniors" who are ages eleven to eighteen gather in Mio every Sunday afternoon to learn English and the history and culture of Mio and the greater Hidaka region of Wakayama. They are mostly children who live in the Hidaka region.
The main purpose of the project is to instill pride in the students' hometown by studying it deeply so they can hand it down to the next generation. They also learn English so that they can spread the history over the world and can communicate with people outside of the town. Their particular focus is to guide people coming from Canada who wish to find their roots in Mio.
※Kataribe junior students study hard to be bilingual guides, but they are not yet ready to show foreign tourists around the Mio area. But anyone can observe in their class so if you are interested in their class, please contact.
The Kataribe activities are usually held four times a month, every Sunday from 1:00p.m. to 3:00p.m. at the former Mio Primary School. In addition to classroom learning, they sometimes go outside to practice being a guide. They also receive a variety of domestic and foreign guests and have collaborative events and lectures with them.
Food for Thought is the teaching material used in the Kataribe class. It is an original English conversation textbook produced by Ms. Misa Izuishi, a Kataribe teacher who has experiences as a professionsal English-language guide in Kumano-Kodo, Wakayama. The textbook covers topics related to the history of Mio and its emigrants as well as local stories and sightseeing spots such as the legend of Johannes Knudsen, the Danish chief engineer who died in an effort to rescue the captain of the troubled vessel, Ryuo Shrine and Uminekojima.