Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Japan Is Not An Island















I was having a conversation with two students today and learned an interesting -- and very disputable -- fact. Apparently Japan is not an island.

One of my students is from a very small island off the southeast coast of the main land. I was asking him questions about his island and he told me it was the third or fifth largest island in Japan. I was shocked because he had just told me that there are only about 50,000 people living on his island. I then asked him, which islands are bigger. He rattled off two random islands and I said, "What about Hokkaido?" not even thinking about the island we were having our class on. Both students in my classroom at the time laughed at me and said, "Hokkaido is not an island!" I said, "Really? Is it attached to the main island?" They said it wasn't. I asked if it was surrounded by water. They said it was. I said, "So its an island." And well, they disagreed.

Am I crazy or is Japan not considered an island? Is Australia considered an Island? Is New Zealand considered an island? Is Iceland considered an island? I would say that I have a little island fever these days but if I'm not on an island then maybe I just have a fever (hit the symbol sound for my bad joke).

7 comments:

Yen Phung said...

no, it is not an island but surrounded by water

Marcus said...

Japan, New Zealand are continental islands.

Why they donot call Japan an island, it's a matter of viewpoint I think.

Yoursmartfriendsinsantamonica said...

australia is a continent.

how is it that you are teaching children?

Benjamin said...

I'm teaching college students, Sam. Australia is also an island. Is it not surrounded by water?

KatduGers said...

I've always been told that Australia is the only continent that is made up of just one country and also the only one that is classed as an island. I would have thought that Japan was an island - if Britain is classed as an island, Japan must be too!

sam said...

and i quote... "Geographically, Australia is a continent, not an island...Australia is too big to be formally classified as an island. The world's largest island is actually Greenland....Another reason why Australia is also considered a continent is because it sits on its own tectonic plate. This is different from Greenland, which uses the same land mass as North America."

Celine said...

Er.... Japan is def. an island.