‘A’ Level Geographers welcome visitor from Tokyo

As part of the Geography ‘A’ Level course pupils in Larne Grammar School study Physical Geography, with a particular focus on Plate Tectonics Theory, Earthquakes and Volcanic Activity. 

We in Northern Ireland have relatively little experience of such major events, other than historic evidence in the rocks and landscapes of Northern Ireland, therefore it was an absolute joy to welcome, to Mr Rea’s classroom, Noel Hamilton – who has spent 30 years living and working in Japan, one of the most seismically active parts of the world!  Of course Noel is still in Tokyo, therefore, we were delighted that he was flawlessly able to join us from almost 6,000 miles away via Google Meet!

Noel Hamilton answers questions from our ‘A’ Level Geographers

Noel shared many of his experiences of not only earthquakes but also life in Tokyo specifically and Japan more generally.  Having lived through and experienced the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and subsequent tsunami, which I am sure we all remember, Noel gave some fascinating insights into what life is like living in such a tectonically active part of the world, and how earthquakes are very common and not something that particularly bothers people who live there.  He also emptied his remarkably compact earthquake survival bag which surprisingly contained rather a lot of items, many of which you would anticipate but there were some surprises too; such as 2 vacuum packed packages which remarkably contained toilets!  This was just one of the many highlights of a tremendously enriching and informative hour of chat with Noel.

Many thanks to Noel for taking the time out of his evening, after a day of online teaching of English in university to Japanese students, to join us and answer so many questions on his life and Japanese society – it was such a great experience for the pupils!

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