Academy Camp 2020 Report

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Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE"

(March/May 2020)

&

Academy Camp 2020 "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" (summer-fall-winter)

Report Academy Camp 2020

(first half)


Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" & Academy Camp 2020 "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Report

Introduction Academy Camp started as a camp for children in Fukushima in the wake of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and the TEPCO Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident. Even today, the basic spirit of the camp has not changed. Recently, however, we have become increasingly concerned about the situation surrounding children's learning itself, because the technological and social landscape is changing dramatically. There is a saying: "No one has ever changed the world by doing what the world has told them to do". These were the words of a young entrepreneur in his teens. Today, many of these young people are emerging in a variety of fields. New technologies such as AI and robotics are finally being integrated into society, and the common sense of the world itself is about to be transformed. This is the beginning of the "next generation". The children who live today and carry the future are part of this "next generation". What we can do now is to support the "next generation" as they move forward into the unknown, so that they do not get caught up in new tragedies, but rather lead the changes that are gaining momentum, so that they can spread their wings into the future. It is with this in mind that we continue to run camps that are full of fun and learning. Who are Academy Camp? We are a group of university faculty members, camp leaders, members of a non-profit organization that supports children, and many student and adult volunteers who support our activities. Since the summer of 2011, we have been organizing camps for children mainly in Fukushima prefecture, aiming to experience the summit of "play" and "learning". https://academy-camp.org Our Activities in Fiscal Year 2020 In 2020, in the context of the prevention of the spread of the new coronavirus infection (COVID-19), online camps were held in March, May and July-December (the Academy Camp's financial year ends on 31 October, so this report covers the period up to that date). We held the first of our online Gathering, Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! in March and a full online camp Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" in May, and from summer to the end of the year, the weekend gathering Academy Camp 2020 (not only) Summer "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research". This report summarises the content of these camps. We hope you will enjoy this wonderful record of days in the lives of the children, supported by your support and the young talent of the students.

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Academy Camp Child Safeguarding Charter 私たちアカデミーキャンプの仲間たちは、メンバー ( 参加するこどもたち ) に対して次のことを守ります。 1. メンバーの命と健康を最優先に考え、メンバーを保護します。 2. メンバーが達成したいゴールの理解に努め、そのゴールをメンバー自身が達成できるようにサポートします。 3. 民族・性別・年齢・宗教・性的指向・その他心身のコンディション等、いかなる条件にもよらず、すべての メンバーに等しく機会を提供します。 4. そのために必要な個別のケアをします。 私たちアカデミーキャンプの仲間たちは、上のことが守られるよう、内外の脅威に対して備え、常に私たち自身 をトレーニングし、私たちが提供する体験の向上に努めます。また、キャンプの外で出会うすべてのこどもたち に対しても同様に接します。

We, the friends of Academy Camp, promise the following for our members (children participating in our programs): 1. Protect the members by giving their lives and health first priority. 2. Work to understand the goals they want to achieve, and help them achieve those goals themselves. 3. Provide equal opportunities to all members regardless of race, gender, age, religion, sexual orientation or other physical or mental conditions. 4. We will do the individual care for each member necessary for the above. We, the friends of Academy Camp, constantly train ourselves to improve the experiences we provide to satisfy the above, and to prepare against internal and external threats. We also treat all the children we meet outside the camp accordingly.

Since the start of our work in 2011, we have generally tried to treat children in the same way as the Charter above, although we have not always declared so explicitly. In order to clarify our stance both internally and externally, we have established this Child Safeguarding Charter, which was published on 27 November 2019. All Academy Camp staff are now committed to following this Charter when they attend our camps.

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Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" & Academy Camp 2020 "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Report

Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! March 2020 In view of the outbreak of the new coronavirus infection (COVID-19), we decided that Academy Camp Spring 2020 "Let's create a Sports Day - Break the Stereotype", which was planned for March 2020, to be cancelled, at least in a physical form. The decision was prompted by a request from the university to cancel or postpone events, to which we as faculty members and students belong. However, in the science fiction film "12 Monkeys", where the virus plays an important part in the story, there is a scene in which the protagonist exclaims: "it's not about the virus at all. It's about following orders, doing what you're told." Of course, it's not about following orders or answering requests, it's about dealing with viruses. We analysed the situation carefully. Unfortunately, camping is an opportunity to spend a lot of time with friends, to eat and drink together. We have decided that the camp should not continue in order to prevent the spread of the virus. However, it is also our spirit that nothing happens for nothing. We have decided to give the children and their families the opportunity to meet online during the scheduled camp period, using computers and smartphones with internet access and cameras. In the past, we have provided many opportunities for the children to communicate through the computer screen, and we knew that this would be a unique opportunity to broaden their experience and develop their ability to interact with others through the internet. Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! March 2020 - Persons responsible for implementation (camp name in brackets) * Kenji Saito (Psyche) - Representative Director, Academy Camp - Professor, Graduate School of Business and Finance, Waseda University / Senior Researcher, Keio Research Institute at SFC

* Maseki Minami (Mabo-san) - Director, Academy Camp - Project Assistant Professor, Graduate School of Media and Governance, Keio University

Basic Information Dates

Fri. 20 Mar 2020 - Sat. 21 Mar 2020 : 2 days

Venue

Zoom meeting

Participants Staff Organizers Grants

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Target : 4th grade to high school students mainly from Fukushima Pref. Participation : About 20 (elementary, junior high and high school students) 6 volunteer staff (university students and working people) 2 persons in charge of implementation (Academy Camp) Academy Camp Public Technology Design Consortium, Keio Research Inst. at SFC Pal System Kanagawa Dream Coop Citizen Activity Support Program


Z3 Day1-2 3/20-21

This was the first time for many of the children to use online video communication tools, but as they learnt how to use them through games such as text chat, and through conversation by splitting into groups, they eventually became better at communicating online than adults probably. We also talked about life during this month, when schools all over Japan were closed temporarily. The participants in this talk were pupils/students, primary school teachers and university professors, all from the school sector. One of the girls said that she had been feeling stressed about life during the school holidays, but that this online gathering had helped to ease her stress. Overall, this online gathering was a good one. Many people said they would like to do it again. It was actually an experiment or a kind of pilot programme for our activities later on in the year.

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Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" & Academy Camp 2020 "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Report

Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! May 2020 "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" Despite the declared state of emergency across the country, Academy Camp is all about having fun. Hence, "Stay Home, Enjoy Life". There are endless possibilities when you stay at home! The internet allows you to connect to the rest of the world and experience new things. This time, we enjoyed this online camp not only with children from Fukushima, but also with children from other parts of the world. This pandemic will probably change the world. When this pandemic is over, the world will not return to normal, but will be reborn. Children and young people will play a leading role in creating this world. Through this camp we have been able to think together about the kind of world we want to live in. We have also created a separate role for teenagers especially for them. In parallel with this online camp, we have set up an online community called "Stone Soup with Academy Camp" (Stone Soup means "priming"), where we have started to prepare the campers to be involved in the planning and to do their own activities. Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! May 2020 - Persons responsible for implementation (camp name in brackets) * Kenji Saito (Psyche) - Representative Director, Academy Camp - Professor, Graduate School of Business and Finance, Waseda University / Senior Researcher, Keio Research Institute at SFC

* Maseki Minami (Mabo-san) - Director, Academy Camp - Project Assistant Professor, Graduate School of Media and Governance, Keio University

Basic Information Dates

Sat. 2 May 2020 - Wed. 6 May 2020 : 5 days

Venue

Zoom meeting

Participants Staff Organizers Grants

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Target : 4th grade to high school students mainly from Fukushima Pref. Participation : 24 (4th grade to high school students) 11 volunteer staff (university students and working people) 2 persons in charge of implementation (Academy Camp) Academy Camp Public Technology Design Consortium, Keio Research Inst. at SFC Pal System Kanagawa Dream Coop Citizen Activity Support Program


Z5 Day 1 5/2 Of the 100 challenges that we would take on together throughout the camp, the first 20 of these were presented by the staff as examples. The remaining 80 were devised together in groups. Over the next five days, we did gradually break out of our shells and challenged ourselves.

On the afternoon of the first day, we had fun with the programme "Adventure Time to Solve the Mystery", which embodies the endless possibilities of being at home. The answer lies somewhere in the world! In order to find a place where they could take the same photo as the image given, everyone had an adventure around the world using Google Street View (the photo above is near the Arc de Triomphe on the Champs-Elysées in Paris). Next, in true Academy Camp fashion, each group created a "question" to help other students find the answer somewhere in the world, as we have always said "problems with known answers are boring". The "100 Challenges", which were designed to be tackled together over a period of 5 days, were posted on Google Spreadsheets one after another. The impossible challenge to go through the Einstein-Rosen Bridge (wormhole) was met with the sophistry of "creating a wormhole in your mind..."! They created a wormhole in their minds! We can't take our eyes off the wisdom of these children.

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Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" & Academy Camp 2020 "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Report

Z5 Day 2 5/3

In the morning gathering, we tried "Dojo-yaburi" (visiting fighter), one of the regular movements at our physical camps. A dojoyaburi came to the campers who were practicing swordsmanship! In order to dodge the attack, we jumped, crouched, and did a serious white blade catching. At 10:00, we had a "snack time" where we had snacks and tea/juice to try out the Zoom drinking that adults also enjoy. In the afternoon, we had a workshop to think about "What is singing?" with a secret guest (who may be easy to guess). We sang a famous children's song that everyone knows "with anger", broke out into small groups to think about various ways of singing and communicating, to think about songs as an experience that the singer creates with the audience, and the meaning of practice and performance. It was a two-hour session that touched everyone's hearts.

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Z5 Day 3 5/4

In the morning, we had a "Cherry Blossom Drone Workshop" with Mabo-san (director of Academy Camp) from the Drone Society Co-Creation Consortium at Keio Research Institute at SFC and drone racer Yokota-san. We saw the cherry blossoms from an angle and at a speed not normally seen, experienced the race, and shared ideas on how drones can be used in a postpandemic world. It was an inspiring time to think about how science can be applied to our lives! In the afternoon, we had a workshop by 6-dim+, a live performance group of improvisational theater and improvisational comedy. We laughed ourselves into convulsions! And we still think there was the essence of wisdom and preparedness to survive in the world of this age, to take an uncertain step forward while thinking about others.

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Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" & Academy Camp 2020 "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Report

Z5 Day 4 5/5

In the afternoon, we listened to Associate Prof. Shinsuke Abe of the Department of Aerospace Engineering, Nihon University. Dr. Abe is a researcher who has participated in both Hayabusa projects. We were very excited to re-experience the "heroic cry" of Hayabusa's return and Hayabusa2's touchdown! The talk on the difference between study (learning known knowledge) and research (creating new knowledge)

was also right in line with what our camps have been cultivating. There was also a scientific analysis of

the content of the movie about the falling comet, which made us feel like, "Run farther! And prepare for the shockwave!" The questions from our members were excellent, and unfortunately it was cloudy in many places, but we were told how to observe the Aquarius meteor shower in the early morning of May 6. Then a campfire in the evening! We started with a ceremony to light the real and the virtual fire (after that, a mysterious Calcifer-like character called "It's a flame" appeared on Zoom) and everyone enjoyed performing around the fire. After we sang "If you are happy, clap your hands" in various ways around the fire, a strange god appeared. He asked, "Do you pledge the same friendship during and after the COVID-19 pandemic?" To which everyone answered "I do!"

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Z5 Day 5 5/6

In the afternoon program on the last day, after reflecting on the past 5 days, we all came up with 50 new challenges for the world after the COVID-19 pandemic is over, which is the reason why this camp was held online. We hope that you will join us in supporting and taking on these 50 challenges! https://academy-camp.org/public/acamp2020z5-50-challenges.pdf At the closing ceremony, after hearing the impressions of the participating members, each staff member gave a speech, and we all stood shoulder to shoulder (!) and sang our "school anthem" called "Gan Gan". Between 1665 and 1666, Isaac Newton left Cambridge University, which had been closed due to the plague epidemic, to spend a vacation in his hometown. During the 18 months he spent there, he developed what would later be called his "three great achievements": optics, the law of universal gravitation, and calculus. These are the foundations of the technologies that support our modern society. During the period when this camp was held, universities were closed as well, but instead today's university faculty had to teach classes during this time (ironically using the same technology that made this online camp possible). Much younger generations with more time on their hands may be creating new ways of thinking to support the next generation of society. With such expectations... Break out to your respective locations!

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Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" & Academy Camp 2020 "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Report

Z5

(student) Staff

* This alternative logo of Academy Camp (right) is a blackand-white design created by a high school sub-leader (at the time) and colored by AI using deep learning.

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Academy Camp 2020

(not only)

Summer

"Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Life is long. But summer vacation is short. Due to the impact of measures to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus infection (COVID-19), the summer vacation of 2020 would have been even shorter than usual across the country. "I was looking forward to doing free research during the summer, but I can't do it!" "I had something I wanted to try during the summer vacation, but it's too short..." In the summer (and fall and winter) of this year, Academy Camp did its best to support their "I want to try!" It was called "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research". Academy Camp 2020 (not only) Summer - Persons responsible for implementation (camp name in brackets) * Kenji Saito (Psyche) - Representative Director, Academy Camp - Professor, Graduate School of Business and Finance, Waseda University / Senior Researcher, Keio Research Institute at SFC

* Maseki Minami (Mabo-san) - Director, Academy Camp - Project Assistant Professor, Graduate School of Media and Governance, Keio University

Basic Information Dates

Venue Participants Staff Organizers Grants

Sun. 26 Jul 2020 - Sun. 20 Dec 2020 : 17 meetings in total * This report covers the period up to Sat. 31 Oct (the 13th meeting) Zoom meeting Target : 4th grade to high school students mainly from Fukushima Pref. Participation : 17 (4th grade to high school students) 10 volunteer staff (university students and working people) 2 persons in charge of implementation (Academy Camp) Academy Camp Public Technology Design Consortium, Keio Research Inst. at SFC Pal System Kanagawa Dream Coop Citizen Activity Support Program Dawnbringer Karma Grant by Riot Games

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Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" & Academy Camp 2020 "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Report not only Summer

Day 1-2

Check in for some serious research! The five-month long, breathless activity has begun.

On the first day, after warming up the place with a rock-paper-scissors tournament and a game of "Kokon Tozai", we thought about what research is and reconfirmed that "knowing everything" is not enough to become a Ph.D. It is because research is to explore what no one knows yet. We then chatted about what we all wanted to know and what we wanted to do. From this, research that will break through the shell of human knowledge may be born! On the second day, we informed that the total research funding for this camp through grants is 1 million yen. Why is the research funded? It is because in this "Serious Research", we will conduct our research in the same way as professionals conduct theirs. You may even have to pass a research ethics test! (This is to make sure that you don't plagiarize, or some other common sense.) Now to prepare your proposal, let's talk about your upcoming research. All the research topics from our members sounded interesting!

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not only Summer

Day 3-5

Continued our journey to explore research theme in the form of "I'm going to do this against that for these reasons."

The goal through the third to fifth days is to describe their research in the form of "I will do x against y for the sake of z". If they do this, the evaluation axis of their research would be "how much does it benefit z", and the experiment will be to see "how does x affect z". The camp would support them with research funds to learn the necessary prerequisite knowledge (y) for their research and to conduct experiments. In small groups, we delved into the subject through dialogue, and a lot of "I'm going to do x against y for the sake of z" were born! We talked about Dimetrodon, an ancient creature from before the dinosaurs, the growth of sunflowers, and the "front line of the world" in the photo above was about potatoes, with talk of gene knockouts to reduce toxicity.

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Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" & Academy Camp 2020 "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Report not only Summer

Day 6-9

Continued their exploration of the research process, learning from professionals.

There was a report from the field on how scientists and researchers, who stand on the shoulders of giants, fight each other's arguments, which led to the question, "How can I search for (good) papers?" Then, everyone learned that the world of science is also being updated digitally (e.g., papers are being posted on preprint servers without waiting for peer review in journals, and everyone is verifying (retesting) them at a very fast pace). Every meeting feels like we're sharing everyone's research progress, and it's already centered on our daily research activities!

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not only Summer

Day 10-11

We shared everyone's Work In Progress and visited the Maker Faire Tokyo virtually.

On the tenth day, we listened to everyone's Work in Progress as a way of wrapping up the last two months or so. We talked about organizing a blockchain donation system, exploring flow experiences through street piano practice, detecting toxins in potatoes, creating a barter system, animating the predatory behavior of Dimetrodon, game programming, urban development, and more. We were really looking forward to seeing more progress. We also learnt the "scientific attitude" (if you wonder if it's true, try it yourself) from childhood episodes of Yukichi Fukuzawa. On the 11th day, we took a special online tour of Maker Faire Tokyo 2020, held on October 3 and 4 at Tokyo Big Sight and online via Twitter, and enjoyed the world of Makers, which was both awesome and ridiculous. We've attended Maker Faire in 2018 and 2019 (exhibiting as Makers in 2019), but had to give up in 2020 due to the pandemic. Hopefully we'll see everyone there in 2021!

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Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" & Academy Camp 2020 "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Report not only Summer

Day 12-13

Preparations for the "Academy Camp Style! Conference" has begun. The quest continues.

The 12th day was a research consultation. We talked about our questions and ideas together. In the middle of the session, we had a costume contest using the new Zoom feature. Maybe because Halloween was around the corner? And the 13th day was on Halloween. Under the title of "Let's Have a Conference! + Halloween Special" the students challenged themselves to a frightening(?) Halloween quiz, thought about the 5W1H of the presentation together, and discussed their own research. To be continued to the final report of this activity in our fiscal year 2021 report.

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Afterword Looking back Academy Camp 2020

Kenji Saito Representative Director, Academy Camp COVID-19 pandemic forced us to move all of our activities online in 2020, but thanks to your generous support and the efforts of our student and adult volunteers who worked together to create the camps, we were able to continue with our new challenges this year. In this difficult time, I remember a message from Poplar-san, a long-time supporter of Academy Camp who was living in the UK at the time, when she participated in an international figure skating competition in 2017 as a fundraising challenge before her retirement. Poplar-san wore the costume of Jack Sparrow from the Pirates of the Caribbean movie series and performed hard, wishing the children at the Academy Camp to be "tough like pirates". This message itself is a precious treasure for us. Now is the time for us to support children so that they can open up a new world on their own with "pirate-like resilience" instead of following the

unreasonableness and uselessness of the adult world. As a part of this effort, Academy Camp has compiled our experiences at our online camps and published them in the "Guide to Online Gatherings for Children" (in Japanese). We hope you will find it useful. https://academy-camp.org/online-gathering-guide/ Once again, thank you to all of you who have supported Academy Camp in 2020. We hope that you will continue to support the Academy Camp and the children in Fukushima and all over Japan as they continue to challenge for the future.

Kenji Saito (Psyche)

From parents' feedback One thing that surprised me was that when children saw someone who could do things, they would say, "I want to put up the whiteboard like that" or "I want to change the background like that". Seeing someone who can do it, my daughters would say, "Me too!" and make challenges. When I see them participating in Academy Camp, I think it's great that children have a safe place to live outside of home and schools. Thank you for all your support. As for myself, I could see the enthusiasm of the adults when they really challenged themselves, and it energized me to do my best as well.

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In the future, AI and robotics will replace what humans do one after another, but they will not take away our spirit of exploration.

On Donations Academy Camp is funded by participation fees from participants and staff, contributions from lecturers, grants, and your donations. We really appreciate your support. To donate: GlobalGiving (US and UK) - https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/academy-camp/

Zoom-in!! Academy Camp! March 2020 / May 2020 "STAY HOME, ENJOY LIFE" & Academy Camp 2020 (not only) Summer "Academy Camp Style! Serious Research" Report https://academy-camp.org

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