New primary school learning resource launched about Japanese toys, arts and crafts

Wed 12th January 2022
Hina Ningyou Dolls

To accompany the popular exhibition, ‘Reflections of Japan in East Yorkshire’, which is still on display at Beverley Art Gallery, East Riding Museums have launched a new online learning resource for primary schools, all about Japanese toys, arts and crafts.

The video-based resource explores the fascinating world of Japanese culture and investigates the connection between Beverley Art Gallery and Japan.

Children are invited to find out about a selection of the traditional Japanese toys collected by East Riding resident Jane Irisa, including hajikizaru, Hina ningyou, and Pyon Pyon Uma. Jane's toys feature in the current exhibition 'Reflections of Japan in East Yorkshire’, until 26 March.

In addition, the resource includes international contributions from Japanese graduate Hinoka and student Akari, who demonstrate how to use kendama and how to make an origami crane.

Exhibition curator Helena Cox provides insight into the links between Beverley Art Gallery and Japan, exploring Fred Elwell's interest in Japanese art and crafts, and John Champney's commission of Sir Alfred East, who spent six months in Japan painting the scenes he encountered there.

There are also activity suggestions for use with Key Stage One and Two classes, supporting a variety of subjects, including history, design and technology, art and design, geography, science, maths and English.

Lucy Cooke, Under 5s Learning Co-ordinator, said: “This new resource is a very exciting way for our primary schools to explore the links between the East Riding and Japan, which are shown so clearly in the exhibition, whilst having fun at the same time!”

Families are also welcome to visit the webpage or watch the videos on the East Riding Libraries, Museums and Archives YouTube page.

To access the Japanese toys, arts and crafts resource, visit

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