Densho Digital Archive
gayle k. yamada Collection
Title: Shigeya Kihara Interview
Narrator: Shigeya Kihara
Interviewer: gayle k. yamada
Location: Monterey, California
Date: July 1, 2000
Densho ID: denshovh-kshigeya-01-0003

SK: Well, it was a strange situation for the teachers and the students. It was the first time in our lives that Oshida, Imagawa, and John Aiso and I were ever attempting to teach the Japanese language to English-speaking Japanese American Nisei soldiers. So the students were very skeptical and very critical in their minds, however, they were soldiers and they were gentlemen and they never questioned the instructors regarding their competency, education, or things like that. In my instance, I didn't know Japanese that well, so I said, "If there's any question that you may have regarding the Japanese that you're studying that I'm not able to satisfactorily answer, let me know. I'll have the answer for you the next day." And so that's the way it went. If I didn't know the answers I would hurry back to the faculty room at noontime and ask my colleagues, "What is this, what is that," and I would get their advice, look up dictionaries, and the next day I would go back to class and inform the students. And I had very little problem teaching my students in that way.