London Metropolitan University Research Institutes

The relationship between citizenship and educational practices in Japan: In the educational practice of “law related education”

Author(s) Tanaka, N.  
Publisher London: CiCe  
Year 2010  
Editor P. Cunningham & N. Fretwell, Lifelong Learning and Active Citizenship  
Age group -  
This research aimed to clarify the relationship between educational practice and citizenship awareness in Japan. This paper adopts the three following procedures in order to clarify these points. First, a general survey is made of citizenship education in Japan. Second, as an example of characteristic citizenship education in practice, the curriculum and learning structure of Citizenship Education established as a new subject in Shinagawa Ward in Tokyo is clarified. Taking the case of law learning in the subject, I try to show the characteristics of the phased learning method and the way in which the law is handled in the learning. And third, the semantic content of citizenship in Japan is examined to clarify the basis of Japanese citizenship educational practice. As a result, I clarified the characteristic that children learn two things, i.e. that 1) our lives are built on rules, and 2) it is our duty to follow such rules. The “good citizen" required by the subject Citizenship Education possesses an excellent sense of morals but does not need to have critical thought or logical judgment, etc. And it has been clarified that the reason for this is the existence of Japan’s unique citizenship consciousness that regards moral consciousness as the primary condition for citizenship.

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