Teachers from Miyagi Prefecture visited an elementary school in Washington on Thursday to thank the students for their support and encouragement for people in the Tohoku region.
Chikako Maruyama, principal of Fukaya Elementary School in Shiroishi, and two other teachers flew to the United States during their winter break to share their quake and tsunami experiences with the students of Thomson Elementary School in the U.S. capital.
“I was in our school gymnasium when the quake hit. I thought I was going to die because the temblors were so big,” Maruyama told the students.
The children listened closely to the teachers’ stories and gazed at pictures of the tsunami-hit areas. Afterward, they asked many questions, such as how long the shaking lasted and how many students were hurt.
“American military men who came to rescue and to remove debris were very powerful and kind. Please be proud of them,” Maruyama told the children.
The teachers and students also enjoyed playing games, using origami and “waribashi” disposable chopsticks.
“The tsunami story was scary. I hope Japanese children can cheer up soon,” one of the students said.