Academic English

“Japanese Bamboo Artifacts”

Level: Topic: Speakers: Length:
difficult Japanese culture man 01:42

Pre-Listening Exercise

What do you know about the bamboo tree, how it is grown, and what it is used for in different places around the world?

Listening Exercise

A. Listen to the recording and answer the questions.

According to the presentation, it was believed that _____.

it was believed that the Shinto gods could be found in the stem of the bamboo plant, and this is something that is portrayed in one of Japan's oldest tales, the Tale of the Bamboo Cutter.

Bamboo is a very useful material because it _____.

Now, bamboo is a very versatile plant. It's light and flexible, . . . but strong.

The chashaku is used for _____.

And the chashaku is a tea spoon, and it is used for measuring powdered green tea during the tea ceremony.

A chasen is a tool used to _____.

And a chasen is a tea whisk, and it is for mixing the powdered green tea in a small bowl, uh, until . . . a . . . it becomes a frothy mixture.

People use a mimikaki to _______.

This is a mimikaki. And although it looks like a small type of spoon, it is act . . . actually an earpick . . .uh . . . used for cleaning out ear wax.

Post-Listening Exercise

Talk about two specific cultural artifacts unique to your region of the world. What are they made of? How are they used and what significance do they have to the people of the area?

Online Investigation

Do research on one of these cultural artifacts or symbols. Report your findings to your friends or the class:

  • The Statue of Liberty
  • Coca Cola
  • the national flag of a country
  • wooden shoes in Holland
  • blue jeans
  • a hookah
  • chopsticks