To join The International Kamishibai Association of Japan (IKAJA) , simply copy/print out and complete the details of the Membership Application Form in block letters and send it to the address shown below, together with the suitable number of International Reply Coupons.
Membership Application Form
Membership Application Form
, (English), (Spanish)
Please send the form to:
The International Kamishibai Association of Japan (IKAJA)
Terakoya, 3-32-15-1F, Inokashira, Mitaka-shi, Tokyo 181-0001 Japan
Becoming an International Member
If you wish to become an international Individual Member, please send two (2) International Reply Coupons with your application form to the contact address below. Group Members, please send ten (10) International Reply Coupons. In case the Coupons are not available at post offices near you, please send us beautiful postage stamps from your country instead (enough to send two airmails).
:Paypal payment of Membership Fee is now possible. Please contact IKAJA's secretary.
After we receive your Membership Application Form and Membership Fee, you will receive the Kamishibai Newsletter Vol.10 in digital format as a welcome gift.
In addition, you can download the back numbers （Vol.11‐Vol.14） from our Menbership Only page.
The link to the latest issue will be sent to you once a year in August.
NEW: International members are no longer obliged to pay annual dues.This change in 2015 stems from the digitization of Kamishibai Newsletter. But we always welcome your donation.
VOICES FROM INTERNATIONAL MEMBERS
Kamishibai to the world
In the autumn of the year 1999 I was in Japan and I visited Doshin-sha Publishing Company. There I saw for the first time the presentation of Kamishibai. It was great! Immediately I thought: This way of storytelling could be interesting for the people in the Netherlands.
Why? Because Holland is a multi-cultural country, and the children living there speak many different languages. Sometimes there are language-problems at school. Even if the teacher reads books aloud, some children do not understand, because their knowledge of the Dutch language is not enough. They might be from Morocco, Turkey etc. and at home they speak only their mother languages. But if you use Kamishibai, language and pictures become the international language: everybody understands pictures at least. Besides Kamishibai-stories are simple and clear, so it would be easy to understand for those who don't understand the language well.
In the year 2000, the Japanese Kamishibai-delegation has visited my country, and I arranged some meetings for their reading and presentation at different places. We talked to students at a teacher's college and the annual meeting of the book writers.
Especially the meeting with the writers was very interesting. The writers were enthusiastic and inspired. Some of them wanted to write Kamishibai-stories by themselves. In Holland we do not have the real Kamishibai? Not yet. However, there are people who use picture books in a Kamishibai-theatre for a kind of Kamishibai-presentation.
In my country there is no publisher yet that publishes real Kamishibai-stories.
But now, for the first time, there will be a Kamishibai-story written by a Dutch writer. I am very proud that my first Kamishibai-story will be published in Japan in June next year, illustrated by Iwao Fukuda, one of the best Japanese illustrators.
The characters in the story are animals instead of people, because animals are more universal for the international or multi-cultural audience.
And promise you that I will do my very best to find a Dutch publisher too for my story. Because Holland needs Kamishibai!
Writer of children's books
(IKAJA's JOURNAL no.2, Dec 2002)
I got acquainted with Japanese Kamishibai 3 years ago when a group of people, led by the publishing company Doshinsha, visited the Netherlands. The Kamishibai they introduced was different from the one that I had known before.
In my country too there are many teachers and professional storytellers who are eager to perform Kamishibai, and their number is increasing. The problem is, however, that most of them do not perform well due to a lack of adequate knowledge about Kamishibai.
Some people, for example, make color copies of picture books and present them as 'Kamishibai', even if the story is not fit for a Kamishibai-story at all. Others create titles by themselves, without paying attention to the special features of Kamishibai. It is often difficult for the audience to concentrate on these stories. Furthermore, there are people that perform Kamishibai in such a way that they attract all attention to themselves rather than to the story.
Be that as it may, many Dutch people feel attracted to Kamishibai and start performing it eagerly. Apparently there is something in it that fits the Dutch mentality.
One reason for this straightforward Dutch acceptance of Kamishibai could be the fact that we have a strong tradition of storytelling. The puppet theatre, for example, is still very popular and there are also many other kinds of storytellers.
Another reason may have something to do with kyokan, empathy through fellowship, which Kamishibai brings out. Teachers often tell me that they are looking for ways to strengthen this kyokan: they have many tools to strengthen "individual development", which is emphasized in the Dutch education system, but they lack ways to promote a more common feeling and fellowship among the children. Especially since there is a growing number of classes with children of different nationalities, a focus on the individual is not sufficient to make children understand each other.
I am very happy that Kamishibai is used more and more often in the Netherlands. At the same time I regret that most performers are not well informed about the key features and the possibilities of it.
This is the reason why I established 'Kinderhart Kamishibai' in 2001. "Kinderhart Kamishibai' is a company that aims to spread "good Kamishibai" in the Netherlands and to make Dutch people more acquainted with adequate, "Japanese" knowledge about Kamishibai.
To this end we give performances and we organize workshops and presentations. We also seek cooperation with teachers, performers, artists, writers, publishers, psychologists for children and others. It will not be an easy task, but in this way we hope to create a new form of real Dutch Kamishibai in the Netherlands...
Karin van Veldhuizen-Wanrooij
(IKAJA's JOURNAL no.3, June 2003)
Peace to the children of the world
At the invitation of the Japan-Vietnam Kamishibai Exchange Center, our delegation including Painter Nguyen Thanh Dam, Painter Do Hung Tuan, Dr. Ho Hoang Hoa, the lecturer of National University Hanoi the Orient Dept. and Mdme. Le Thi Dat, Deputy Director cum Editor in Chief of Kim Dong Publishing House went to attend the Kamishibai Exchange held in Japan in July 2003.
With the support of the JVKEC and IKAJA organizers, we had chances to meet with members coming from different areas of Japan. The first exchange was held on 13 July 2003 in Tokyo that attracted hundreds of members from different locations. It was really touching for us to see how Kamishibai was supported by the enthusiastic members. Originated from a paper art for children, Kamishibai has improved in its significance to an art of peace, peace for the children.
On 15 July, another Kamishibai exchange meeting was organized in Okinawa. We had the privilege to attend the Kamishibai meeting at Kusunuchi Peace Cultural Center where the first Kamishibai theatre was created in Japan. On this beautiful island, we were warmly welcomed. When we talked about the war in Vietnam, its pain of losses as well as the lingering consequences remained in the following generations we saw tears pouring down many faces. And we felt things that are quite close with our country, Vietnam.
People of different ages and work attended the Kamishibai exchange both in Tokyo and in Okinawa. However diversifying that their jobs are, all have one thing in common that is the love for Kamishibai art as well as its great mission of bringing peace to children all over the world.
We completed our exchange visit, bringing home a great amount of beautiful experiences about the country of rising Sun, a country of hospitality and tradition. We would like to express our thanks to the members of Kamishibai Association of Japan for such meaningful and interesting days. As one of the group members of Kamishibai Association of Japan, we Vietnam Kamishibai Association would like to walk with you.
Le Thi Dat
Deputy Director of Kim Dong Publishing House
(IKAJA's JOURNAL no.4, Nov 2003)
Kamishibai introduced in Germany
At the International Children's Bookfair in Bologna, Italy, in spring 2003 I came into contact with Kamishibai for the first time. In order to introduce this relatively unknown form of Japanese storytelling in Europe, Kyoko Sakai und Etsuko Nozaka had asked for an appointment with the International Youth Library, a well-known organisation operating internationally and nationally. Before the meeting our language specialist for Japanese language, Mrs. Fumiko Ganzenmueller, gave me background information. What a big step from theory into practice! I was immediately excited about this way of presenting stories through pictures. And I was not the only one. Many visitors stopped at our booth to listen. It was obvious that this form of storytelling is universal and can be understood all over the world. I believe that in Germany Kamishibai could be just the right tool to support reading promotion and to stimulate the interest of younger children in stories and books. Kamishibai is an amazing instrument of entertainment that appeals to each of our senses.
This was the reason why I immediately agreed to introduce Kamishibai to Germany with workshops being held at the International Youth Library. For our preparation the Doshinsha publishing house supplied us with some beautiful Kamishibai portfolios that perfectly matched the library's existing collection and were especially helpful to show the wide variety of pictures and stories. In order to provide the audience with the contents of the stories we asked our friend Inga Streb, a Japanologist, to translate ten Kamishibai stories into German. All participants were given folders with all the translations so that they could prepare themselves for the lectures. At the beginning of each lecture a short summary in German was given, and for longer stories short explanations were provided in between. Thanks to this method it was a very intense experience for the audience. Those members of the audience who are storytellers themselves were particularly amazed and asked for further information about and how and where to obtain stages and portfolios with pictures in Germany.
We assume that some participants will use the German texts to create their personal Kamishibais, and so some Japanese stories and pictures might soon make their entry into Germany. We really hope that a German publishing house can be found that is interested in cooperation and offers Kamishibai portfolios as a first step for introducing this entertaining form of storytelling into kindergartens or school classes. I hope to arouse further interest in Kamishibai in Germany with my article that I wrote for our house-magazine 'the IJB-Report'.
Former Director of the International Youth Library
(IKAJA's JOURNAL no.6, Nov 2004)
Kamishibai is an interesting form of storytelling. I first got to knew it, when a young teacher used the paper theatre for a beautiful presentation of a German fairy-tale. So it was not an original Kamishibai story. I think Kamishibai is effective to develop reading and writing skills. Because of its ideal size Kamishibai can be used easily with small and large groups. You can also use it with an individual child. But I do appreciate Kamishibai in another reason. The stories evoke Kyokan. Kyokan means fellowship through empathy and Kamishibai is a vehicle for human creativity and a vital social force which leads us. I hope that Japanese members of IKAJA will come to Germany and will visit some primary schools and that they will present a collection of Kamishibai stories in a training college for teachers.
Secondary teacher (working at Studienseminar Syke, training college for teachers near Bremen)
Basque is a non-Indo-European language and a lesser used-language. In Basque Country -or Euskal Herria-, we try to teach basque language to children as properly as we can. Kamihsibai is another way to teach basque language as good as traditional story books, and children enjoy a lot listening to kamishibai in basque.
Josu Jimenez Maia
EIBZ : Resource Center for Basque language Teachers
(the organiser of IKAJA's mini-workshop in april, 2006)