Japan is a rocking and rolling place – literally. This small country made of four main islands and over 6,000 smaller islands sits near three tectonic plates. These plates are part of the Earth’s crust. When they rub against each other, they can cause big problems. Japan experiences over 1,000 earthquakes every year. Most of the earthquakes are small, but every now and then a big earthquake arrives. Japan also has 60 active volcanoes.
On Friday March 11th 2011, Japan suffered a catastrophic earthquake followed by a Tsunami. The earthquake measured 9.0 magnitude. The resulting Tsunami raced onshore at a height of 133 ft in some area’s. Over 15,000 unfortunate people lost their lives with many more injured and left homeless.
Japan is a beautiful, mountainous country and the people of Japan love this beauty. Many believe that the water, trees and mountains have souls. People have lived in Japan for more than 30,000 years. Long ago, Japan was joined to Asia’s mainland and settlers simply walked to Japan. Later civilizations came by boat and made tools, grew rice and wove beautiful fabric.
Europeans arrived in Japan in the 1500s. The shoguns – or leaders – made a law that no foreigners could enter Japan and no one from Japan could leave. This law lasted for more than 200 years. In 1868, the rulers were overthrown and the law was changed. The Japanese began to adapt Western ways of thinking and living. Japan fought with the United States during World War I, but fought against the U.S. and the Allied Forces during World War II. The United States dropped bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August of 1945. The bombs killed about 115,000 people. The war ended a few days later.
Today, Japan is a prosperous, bustling country. The Japanese are known for being hard workers and for taking education seriously. They’re leaders at building cars, computers, technology and electronics.
Fun Facts about Japan for Kids
- 127,728,000 people live in Japan.
- Capital of Japan is Tokyo.
- The currency used is the Japanese Yen.
- The Prime Minister of Japan is Shinzo Abe.
- Japan has 145,902 square miles of land.
- Most people in Japan speak Japanese.
- Most people are Shinto or Buddhist.
- People in Japan can expect to live 83 years. One reason they live so long is because they eat a diet of mostly rice, fresh fruit and fresh vegetables.
- 99 percent of adults can read.
- At 3,776 m Mount Fuji is the tallest mountain. It is a volcanic mountain.
- At 367 km the Shinano River is Japan’s longest river.
- The national flower of Japan is the Cherry Blossom.
- Basahi which is a delicacy in Japan is actually raw Horse meat.
- Tectonic plates: large plates of rock that make up the Earth’s crust
- Soul: spirit
- Adapt: take on or adjust
- Bustling: busy
All About Japan Video for Kids
Check out this cool video about Japan for kids:
This is an animated infographic video on facts about Japan.
Question: How do people greet each other in Japan?
Answer: People bow to each other. They do not shake hands.
Map of Japan
Here’s a map of the country of Japan and all its cities and villages. Zoom in to get into street level or zoom out to see other countries around Japan! You can see the terrain, but also see the roads, images of the buildings and even take a 3D tour through the streets of the cities of Japan, as though you are actually there!
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