On July 4, with the cooperation of Saitama-Chuo Japan Agricultural Cooperatives, Co-op Mirai held an event " Searching for living creatures in rice paddies" in Kawajima Town, Saitama Prefecture, with the participation of 81 people from 25 groups, including 39 children.
This event is an initiative for parents and children to experience the joy of harvesting and interacting with nature through rice planting, searching for living creatures, harvesting rice, and holding a harvest festival. This year marks the 29th year of the initiative, which aims to help children learn the joy and hardships of growing crops and develop a sense of respect for food.
The participants observed the growth of rice seedlings that were planted in June, listened to an explanation about the growth of the seedlings from a representative of Saitama-Chuo Japan Agricultural Cooperatives, and looked for creatures in the canals. Mr. KANAZAWA Hikaru of the Saitama Fish Research Institute explained the names of the creatures that were collected, and many questions were asked by the children. The children learned that the rice is grown in a good environment where many living creatures are able to live.
A representative from Saitama-Chuo Japan Agricultural Cooperatives explains about the growth of the seedlings
The comments from the participants included, "I have never seen crayfish and killifish except in pet stores, so it was a good learning experience to know that they exist in nature", "It was good to learn that rice paddies are important not only for growing rice but also the habitat for many other living creatures". "It had been rainy and boring days, but I was able to experience many new things and in the end had a very fulfilling day".
Searching for living creatures
Explanation of the living creature
A quiz about rice paddies