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Learning Across Generations: A Small-Scale Initiative

  • Stephen RyanEmail author
  • Kay Irie
Chapter
Part of the New Language Learning and Teaching Environments book series (NLLTE)

Abstract

This chapter reports on a small-scale cross-generational learning initiative instigated by a group of high school students in the historic city of Matsue in the western part of Japan, a region with a rapidly aging population. In this project, the students developed and organized a series of lessons to teach English to seniors in the community with the aim of providing English language guide services to international tourists visitors to the town. The chapter begins by considering some of the contextual factors that prompted this innovative approach to English learning, focusing on both demographic changes and the Japanese government’s ongoing attempts to reform education. In the subsequent section, we describe the process in which this innovation was developed by interpreting and sharing the stories told by the key players, and finally consider some of the wider implications and possibilities suggested by the project.

Keywords

Aging society Educational policy Intergenerational learning Lifelong learning Out-of-class learning 

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Culture, Media and SocietyWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan
  2. 2.Faculty of International Social SciencesGakushuin UniversityTokyoJapan

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