September 12, 2001
Paper Cranes Spread Peace-Teacher Tip:
The crane has become an international symbol of peace. With current events that profoundly touch us all, this might be a good time to make origami cranes and create a little peace corner in your classroom. (Find directions for folding paper cranes in library books or on the Web.)
Legend says that folding a thousand cranes makes a wish come true. You may wish to share the origins of the custom by reading the story of Sadako Sasaki, a young Japanese girl who was two years old when the atom bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, Japan on August 6, 1945. As she grew up, Sadako was a strong, courageous and athletic girl. In 1955, 11-year-old Sadako suddenly took ill while practicing for a big race. She was diagnosed with Leukemia, "the atom bomb" disease. Sadako began folding paper cranes after her best friend told her of an old Japanese legend saying that anyone who folds a thousand paper cranes would be granted a wish. Sadako's wish was to get well so that she could run again. She never gave up, and folded more than 1000 paper cranes before her death on October 25, 1955 at the age of twelve. In 1958, a statue of Sadako holding a golden crane was unveiled in Hiroshima Peace Park. Her friends and classmates made this wish, which is inscribed at the bottom of the statue: "This is our cry, This is our prayer, Peace in the world."
Try This! Journaling Questions
Journey North is pleased to feature this educational adventure made possible by the Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership (WCEP).
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