Junior Writers Reporting

Students of Midorii Elementary School study about A-bombing every year at “Peace Gathering”

Midorii Elementary School, located in Asaminami Ward, Hiroshima, initiated an annual event in 2006 to explore the subject of peace and help hand down the legacy of the atomic bombing.

Every August 6, the anniversary of the bombing, the students come to school and take part in a “Peace Gathering.” Last year, the sixth graders displayed pictures made of paper cranes which had been offered to the Children’s Peace Monument in Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. They shared five pictures, including images of the A-bomb Dome and flags from countries around the world, and explained each one.

The participants at the event also watched an abridged version of a documentary film which recounts the story of students from Honkawa Elementary School, located in Naka Ward, sending drawings to the United States after the war and receiving school supplies in return. The school invited the filmmaker, Shizumi Shigeto, a U.S. resident, to share her thoughts on the film. The gathering gave the students a chance to become acquainted with Ms. Shigeto, and led to elementary schools and churches in the United States displaying the pictures of peace that were crafted from paper cranes.

At this year’s event, Midorii Elementary School plans to use film and music to convey the cruelty of how the atomic bombing erased people’s hope and dreams.

Ayumu Arimori, 42, the teacher in charge of peace education at the school, said, “I hope students can learn more about the atomic bombing and feel inspired to think about what they can do to help create a more peaceful world.” (Marina Misaki, 14)

(Originally Published on June 24, 2013)