Roaming around the Hiroshima city, Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

Name Sharmin Hena
Country Bangladesh
Year / month of graduation September 2020
Degree obtained Master of Education
Position / organization
as of March 2021

Instructor (General),  Ministry of Primary and Mass Education

This article was written in March 2021.

Why did you choose Japan, and Hiroshima university for your study?

The first reason to choose Japan for my higher study is the well-facilitated education system and good learning environment. Besides, I found the MEXT scholarship to cover my educational expenses and daily necessities in Japan, although it is recognized as one of the world’s most expensive countries. I choose Hiroshima university because I found my prospective supervisor according to my interest in education there. Moreover, my husband was in the same institution and doing his Ph.D. at my application time. 

Hanami Party 2019, Backyard of IDEC, Hiroshima University

I acquired the motivation to pursue my Master of Education from Hiroshima University after screening the curriculum and multitasking education policy, especially the field visit. I obtained real motivation from my supervisor after a skype conversation with her about my research. Finally, I found Japan as the safest place for women with children for themselves and their children.

What did you learn and study at Hiroshima university?

In the Master’s program at Hiroshima University, my major focus was on Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE). In this journey, I have learned about different theories and practices of ECCE in the global context. Also, I have worked as an assistant at the ‘JICA Knowledge Co-creation Training Course on Early Childhood Development (ECD)- 2020’, which enhances my knowledge about ECD practices in Japan. I have enrolled in different courses where I have learned about research methods in education.

Submission of Master thesis to my main academic advisor MIWA Chiaki (Associate Professor, Hiroshima University), Hiroshima University Hall

Besides this, I have experienced a way to develop a project proposal for an international organization. Moreover, I have worked as a teaching assistant at the ‘History of Japanese Educational Development’ course.

In my research, I have focused on exploring the characteristics of teaching-learning practices of mathematics for the pre-primary level students by parents and teachers in Bangladesh at home and preschool. The second focus of my study was to explore the practices related to students’ better understanding of number concepts. My research title was “Developing Number Concepts: Teaching-Learning Practices of Pre-primary Students at Home and Preschool in Bangladesh.”

Did you enjoy your stay in Hiroshima?

I enjoyed my stay period and passed quality time in Hiroshima. It is the best memory of my life until today. Among the huge experiences I have gathered, I can explain IDEC open day’s celebration in 2019 as my best experience during my study at Hiroshima university. I was a member of the Bangladesh team, and our team performed a fashion show considering Bangladeshi culture. We cooked traditional food and served it to people from different nations of the world. It was a great opportunity for me to enjoy the cultural diversity from the performance of different teams.

Please tell us your current work. Does what you learned or studied at Hiroshima university help you?

I am a teacher trainer (Position: Instructor-General) under the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education in Bangladesh. In my job, I usually teach Mathematics-Pedagogical Knowledge for Diploma in Primary Education (DPEd) course. I also conduct different short courses on Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and a contemporary new teaching-learning method at the pre-primary and primary level. Those short and long courses assist those teachers in developing their professional knowledge and experience. The DPEd course is required to facilitate action research, case study, and lesson study. I need to teach them different kinds of teaching-learning theories. 

I have learned about research and lesson study, and different theories on ECCE. Yes, those kinds of learning help me to support my country’s teachers for their professional development. The teaching method I have experienced from the different professors and associate professors of Hiroshima University helped me improve my teaching manner. My supervisor Miwa Chiaki’s professional custom, taught me many things to improve my communication and academic skills. I can apply those styles to improve those teachers’ professional customs.

Moreover, the “History of Japanese Educational Development” course was a great source to learn about developing Japan’s education system even after world war ii. We, the people of Bangladesh, should follow this to improve our education system, especially for teacher recruitment, teacher education, and develop our country’s next generation’s morale.

Besides, I have learned the etiquette and manner from professors and other office staff, which is very common for Japanese people. I always try to practice punctuality, politeness, honesty, kindness to other in my daily life. I would like to share all of my experiences with my family members, colleagues, and other subordinates.

Do you recommend Hiroshima university for others to choose?

I want to recommend Hiroshima university as one of the finest destinations for higher education to my colleagues and friends. At first, it provides a friendly learning environment to students according to their needs and interest. Secondly, the courses offered by the university are updated, and there is an opportunity of choice. Thirdly, the staff from the student support office were very helpful. Finally, I found my supervisor, sub-supervisor, and other teaching staff kind enough and easily accessible for any consultation. Therefore, it could be the best choice of higher study for every student worldwide, especially one who wants to study on education.