5850924292 79a3262774 z

Image licensed under CC BY 2.0

CURRENT EVENT | FEBRUARY 21, 2017

Making Lunch in Japan is High Stakes

Packing a child's lunch in Japan can take more than an hour, since moms create bento lunches that take lunch ingredients and transform them into cute characters. Ham and rice can be made into Pokemon, cute animals, or famous people. It's called character bento, or kyaraben, and there's a lot of pressure to produce these food creations. In Japan, women are highly educated, but about 70 percent quit working after having children. Thus a lot of talent and creative energy is sometimes going into creating competitively cute lunches. Listen to hear more about the lunch making culture in Japan.

Want to Listen?

TEACHERS: Access our entire library of lessons and current events!

With a free teacher account, you get:
  • Our lesson collections for Social Studies, ELA, and Science
  • Authentic audio news stories curated for the classroom
  • Teaching resources to check for understanding
  • And new Current Events every school day
Teachers Join Free

Already a Member? Login Now

Story Length: 4:03

Listen to the Story:

Listening Comprehension Questions

  • What was one of Malala Yousafzai’s first experiences with the dangers of religious extremism?
  • After miraculously surviving her attack, what has Malala focused her work on?
  • What is the message that Malala is trying to send to those in power?
  • What does Malala want to do in the future?
  • What are the goals of Malala’s mission to support girls?

Discussion Themes

  • What is your opinion on Malala’s message about the power of education?
  • Why do you think that ISIS might want to silence people like Malala?

Socrative users can import these questions using the following code: SOC-1234