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Japan: Home

IS 398 Japan



Day 1: Depart the US on an overnight flight.

Day 2: Arrive in Kanazawa, Japan. Meet host families.

Day 3: Explore downtown Kanazawa with Hokuriku Gakuin University (HGU) students.

Day 4: Worship at Kanazawa Baptist Church. Free time to rest, explore, and socialize.

Day 5: Observe English and Japanese Culture classes at HGU. Lunch (each day) with HGU students.

Day 6: Teach university and elementary English lessons.Work with translators on chapel presentation.

Day 7: Discuss American college culture with HGU sociology class. Tour Samurai and Geisha districts of Kanazawa. Sushi dinner at Omicho Fish Market.

Day 8: Teach University English lesson. Informal conversational English with HGU students. Tour Oyama Jinja Shrine and Ninjadera Temple.

Day 9: Teach Bible story to kindergarten students. Teach university or elementary English lesson. Explore Kanazawa castle, garden, and samurai villa.

Day 10: Free day to sight see, shop, and spend time with HGU friends.

Day 11: Worship at Kanazawa Baptist Church. Depart for home.


*Activities may shift slightly as we finalize plans with our host institution.


Welcome to the IS 398 Japan LibGuide where you will learn how you can enroll in AU's upcoming trip to Japan in Spring 2014.


Kanazawa is a beautiful and ancient city with Japanese gardens, historic samurai and geisha districts, temples and shrines. Our host institution will be Hokuriku Gakuin University where instructor Susan Larson spent six months teaching English in 2011-2012. We’ll be staying with host families connected with the university.


This class combines two rare opportunities:

1. Building cross-cultural friendships: living and working with Japanese students.

When you return from this trip, you will have pictures of a beautiful ancient Japanese city and the memory of devouring unparalleled sushi. But this is not a sight-seeing tour. This is a relationship building trip. When you return, you’ll hold in your heart the deep kindnesses of the family you’ve lived with and the friendships you’ve forged over bowls of rice and broken English. By the time you return, many of the streets, shops and classrooms of Kanazawa will feel like a second home. And the connections you’ll share with your Japanese brothers and sisters in Christ will be forever gifts from your Father above.


2. Developing a marketable skill: teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL)

English is the international language of business, education, and missions. Nations everywhere seek native English speakers to equip their citizens to communicate globally. Mission organizations use English education as a vehicle to reach others with the gospel. This study-abroad class will enable you to become conversant in TESL. With the skills you acquire, you’ll create lessons and team-teach students at both Hokuriku Gakuin’s university and elementary school. Since our focus will be on conversational English, you’ll build relationships in the process and have opportunities to share your faith.

Google Map

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Subject Guide

Susan Larson's picture
Susan Larson


Sister City - Buffalo New York

Average winter snowfall is 109 inches.

A local proverb says “even if you forget your lunchbox, don't forget your umbrella”. It rains 193 days a year.

Favorite food is jumbo shrimp, followed by sushi and sashimi. But don't forget the gyozarameni,and kaisen tonkomori-don (rice topped with raw seafood)..

Known for its gold-leaf craftwork called "Kanazawa-haku".

Don't be suprised if you see ropes stretched from trees. These are used to protect them from heavy snows.

Kanazawa Castle is called "the palace of 1,000 tatami".

Kenroku-en is one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan.