These are small jizo statues at the Hasedera temple in Kamakura, Japan. This famous Buddhist temple houses larger statues, too – including an enormous wooden statue of Kannon (the Buddhist Goddess of Mercy). It’s one of the largest wooden statues in Japan (at 30 feet), and has 11 heads.
Jizo statues represent the Jizo bodhisattva, who is the protector of children (unborn, alive, and deceased), expectant mothers, firemen, seamen, and travelers.
- Watch this peaceful video of a visit to the Kamakura Hasedera Temple from the street to exploring inside, including the thousands of jizo statues. Now check out this article on a visit to the temple. Discuss the most remarkable features that stand out to you. Have you ever been to Japan or a Japanese temple?
- Learn about the temple on their official website. One of the most popular features of Japanese temples are small wooden with tablets, called Ema, that visitors can write wishes on. Read how Japanese teens use wishing tablets, then cut up some paper and have your class write wishes on them. What did you wish for?
- Look at these beautiful photos taken around the temple. Gather your art supplies and draw one of the statues that you love most.