EJP: Explore Japan Program
Explore Japan Program (EJP) is an opportunity for the entire family to learn, experience and appreciate a new culture — all without leaving home!
Since 1992, the Explore Japan Program (EJP) connects local communities and families with those in Japan through a fun, free and educational summer exchange program in Boston, USA.
Visiting Japanese high school students stay with local families for 2.5 weeks and participate in daily activities with their host siblings. EJP is designed to give participants maximum exposure to each other’s cultures to make the most of their experience. Together with their host sister and/or brother, they will attend whole day activities from Mondays to Fridays.
Typical day has Japanese students participating in ESL classes in the mornings while their host siblings learn about Japanese language and culture. In the afternoons, all students experience local areas and culture together on field trips or doing fun activities. Visiting students will spend their weekends participating in activities arranged by their respective host family.
EJP runs annually in the summer (July-August). We run an EJP Girls Program and an EJP Boys Program in parallel. Boys and girls are separated into their own program. Our summer program is not a typical summer camp where participants and staff stay overnight throughout the program duration. Participants are only at the program location Mondays to Fridays from 9AM to 4PM.
- Safety and Security
- Sample Itinerary
Morning Language Classes
- ESL Classes for Japanese students - ESL curriculum is created by Adz Group specifically for use in this program. Lessons are designed to increase English language conversation proficiency and encourage interaction between hosts and visiting students. Daily lessons are taught by experienced ESL professionals. Homework assignments are provided daily by ESL teachers.
- Japanese Language and Culture Classes for Host Sibling(s) - Local kids learn about Japanese culture in small groups, guided by a Japanese Culture Teacher. Activities include: Japanese Arts and Crafts, Flower Arranging, Calligraphy, Japanese Language, Japanese Pop-Culture and more!
Afternoon Field Trip Activities
Afternoon field trips are designed to expose visiting students to the many aspects of American culture, from world famous museums and historical sites to local hiking trails and team building activities. Below are examples of field trip activities:
- Museum of Fine Arts Boston Tour
- Candle Pin Bowling (Unique to New England)
- Freedom Trail and Quincy Market Visit
- Red Sox Baseball Game and Fenway Park Tour
- Park Adventure Activities such as Canobie Lake Park
- Harvard University Visit
- Movie Theatre Visit
Visiting Japanese Students
Visiting students are either female or male high school students ages 14 to 17. They are participating in this program to improve their English communication skills and learn more about Boston. They are looking for local families who have kid(s) of the same gender to host them and have their kid(s) participate in the same program with them.
Local Families with Kids
Families with kids ages 6 to 18 in all Eastern Massachusetts community are welcome to participate. Families who host a Japanese student can send their child to attend the summer program for FREE! That is a 2.5-week program, 9AM to 4PM, Mondays to Fridays, including admission and supervision on all field trips — for free! Japanese student and the child need to be of the same gender as they will attend the program together.
Kids learn in small groups (broken down by age) under the guidance of a Japanese expert and a student aide. The EJP Girls and Boys Programs have a limited number of spaces available, so complete your application now to reserve your slot.
To ensure smooth execution of the program, each Explore Program has its own Program Director and Program Staff. Directors are experienced teachers or camp counselors with a strong interest in working with students and learning about new cultures, and CPR/First Aid certified. All Staff that are 18 years of age and older must pass a criminal background check, and help prevent and solve cultural misunderstandings.
Each Host Family is screened by Adz Group to ensure that a safe and healthy home is provided for visiting students. Staff visit new homes to survey living conditions and to interview the Host Family. All Host Families are required to pass criminal background checks, and agree to Host Responsibilities including being enthusiastic and active participants, sharing their culture and opening their home, paying for all meals and transport, etc. Students are placed with same-gender host sibling participant and with families who have similar interests. More than 50% of Host Families each summer have participated in the past.
To maximize their experience, we expect visiting students who participate in the program to:
- Understand they are guests in their Host Family’s home
- Keep an open mind that is receptive to new ideas, beliefs and ways of thinking.
- Be willing to contribute to the Host Family by taking part in conversations, helping with chores, participating in family events and interacting with Host siblings
- Be willing and able to pay for themselves on certain situations (activities requested by students, buying gifts, etc.)
- Be an active, involved and contributing member to the Program’s success
- Agree to communicate any issues with their host family to program coordinators and staff
We expect the host families participating in the program to:
- Be responsible in providing transportation between house and program venue for their child and their visiting student
- Provide meals each day to their child and their visiting Japanese student
- Spend quality time with their visiting student during the program duration
- Complete and return the Host Profile and House Rules documents
- Have all adults in the home submit to a background check
- Understand their responsibilities as a host
- Attend the Explore Japan Program orientation with the whole family
- Keep Program Staff updated on any major issues before, during and after the Program