Author Archives: kumamoto

Winter 2018 YOKA

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It’s finally here! The Winter 2018! This quarter’s YOKA features the following…

  • The Call of the Drums by Olayitan Akindes
  • Eventful Uto, 御輿来海岸 by June Ang
  • Kimono Class in Uto City by June Ang
  • An ALT’s Journey to the Kendo World Championships by Dale Padoin
  • Winter Blues or Something More Sinister? Thoughts on How to Protect Yourself against Depression on the JET Program by Jennifer Frey
  • ALT Pep Talk by Bilal Khan
  • Learn about Pizza by Chiri Davis
  • Shimabara by Melissa Wright
  • Graduation by Timothy Hull
  • A Taste of Tea in Minamata by Greg Corbett
  • KumAJET’s Christmas Party at Jiaien Children’s Home and Spring 2018 Events, KumAJET
  • Kashima: the Village of Water by Lily McDermott
  • Carnival: Introducing my Country’s Largest Festival by Zaynab Nakhid
  • Interview with a Wirebender by Zaynab Nakhid
  • Photos by June Ang, Greg Corbett, Chris Hester, Justin Lau, Laura McGhee, Joyce Tan, and Jenifer Vosper

This YOKA was designed by George Leach. An HQ version (45MB) of this issue is also available.

Not sure what the YOKA is? The YOKA is a quarterly English-language newsletter written and designed by Kumamoto JETs. For more information and past YOKAs, visit this page.

We happily accept submissions for future YOKAs! If you are interested in contributing an article, photo, or creative piece for a future issue, then please e-mail your submission to

Welcome Kumamoto April Arrivals!

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We would like to extend a warm welcome to all JETs arriving in Kumamoto in April this year. Welcome to Kumamoto, ‘Land of Fire’ and home of Kumamon!

Please take some time to peruse the website to prepare yourself for coming to Japan. There is a wealth of information here, so please check it regularly. Additionally, if you have any questions about JET, Kumamoto, what to prepare, or what to expect, please do not hesitate to contact the Kumamoto Prefectural Advisors (

2017 Skill Development Conference

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As all Kumamoto ALTs know, the 2017 Skill Development Conference (SDC) was held on November 30 and December 1, 2017. For two days, ALTs, JTEs, and HRTs particpated in workshops focusing on teaching, English language, and living and working in Japan. We hope the conference participants learned some new things, but we also hope that they were able to network and bond with each other.

This year’s SDC materials are available here.

Here are some photos from the conference. Click “continue reading” to begin reminiscing…

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Announcements from AJET

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AJET will be holding several events in the near future, including elections for new members for the National AJET Council and Block Representatives, a Spring Opinion Exchange, a Kyushu Hanami event (in Kumamoto!), and a gathering in Okinawa.

Please click “continue reading” to see the details of each event!

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2017 Tax Guide for US JETs

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The tax guide for American JETs for the 2017 tax year has been updated! Please check the U.S. Tax Guide section of the website for the updated guides (one for first-year US JETs, one for 2nd-5th year US JETs) and the FAQ. Or, click here!

Best of luck to everyone in preparing their taxes!

2017 Kumamoto International Friendship Festival

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On Saturday, November 25, the 24th annual International Friendship Festival was held in Kumamoto City.

Several JETs participated in the festival, showcasing dancing performances, taiko skills, a kimono fashion show, and even sharing information on international exchange opportunities for Japanese students.

If you are a Kumamoto JET and interested in doing a performance or hosting an exchange booth next year, please let the PAs know!

Here are a few photos from the event!






2017 Higokko Wakuwaku English Camp for JHS Students

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The Higokko Wakuwaku English Camp for JHS students was held on November 18 in Kumamoto City. Kumamoto’s JETs gathered to volunteer at the camp and lead students from junior high schools all over the prefecture in learning about foreign cultures while using English. It was loads of fun!

Of course, Kumamon joined us and we danced our hearts out to the “Kumamon Taiso” song.

Photographic evidence of the fun can be found below (don’t forget to click “continue reading”).

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2017 Higokko Wakuwaku English Camp for ES Students

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On Saturday, October 21, the 3rd annual Higokko Wakuwaku English Camp for elementary school students was held in Kumamoto City. Students from elementary schools around the prefecture spent the day playing games and making crafts with Kumamoto Prefecture’s ALTs. And the best part? The students did all of this while practicing English!

Of course, the lovable Kumamon joined in on the fun.

Here are some photos from the camp (click “continue reading” to see more!). What fond memories!

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