YOU-CRANE (Ukraine Fundraiser)

SJA is partnering with Naoko (Origami YouTube: Fold It!) to teach us how to fold origami cranes, which are a symbol of hope and peace in Japan. The Japanese believe that by folding 1000 paper cranes, a wish will come true. This is based on the story of Sadako, a young girl who lived in Hiroshima during the nuclear bombing and eventually died of leukemia at the age of 12. 

To make this decoration with us at home, you will need the following:- Two pieces of origami or other paper cut into squares – one blue and one yellow (the colors of the flag of Ukraine)- Beads- Wire or string- Scissors – A Needle to string the beads and origami cranes .

** If you don’t have beads, you can can just string your origami cranes together with a needle and thread or leave them as they are. 

SJA will take some ornaments to the Ukrainian embassy in DC as a gesture of peace and goodwill.

Scan the QR code on the flyer or click here to register! Hope to see you there

Origami Update & Spring Workshop

In addition to offering an origami segment during the SJA Ikebana event in January (fan and Mt.Fuji), we did another Origami Workshop, the last one of the winter workshops on 2/13.  It was right before Valentine’s Day, so we folded two kinds of Hearts, and a sweet Cup Cake!  Naoko-sensei taught the first Heart, and shared how we can include our love message inside the Hearts.  The second Heart, a 2 color Heart, was a bit complicated, but everyone followed Michiko-sensei’s instructions thoroughly and folded so well!  Some did multiple Hearts!  The last was a Cup Cake by Satoko-sensei.  Everyone’s colorful cupcakes looked so yummy and perfect for getting ready for Valentine’s Day!  Hope everyone enjoyed the workshop as much as we did   We are offering the spring workshop from March.  Please register via the flyer. Hope to see you there!

Origami Workshops

SJA offers origami workshops periodically for young learners and grown-ups alike interested in learning origami paper folding, an art form and one of the oldest parts of Japanese culture. We strive to provide easy-to-follow instructions to create simple yet adorable models anyone can enjoy. Our instructors are trained and certified under the Taro’s Origami Studio Artist Basic Certification Course.

Our workshops focus on basic folding techniques that will provide a lifelong skill to transform a piece of square paper into intricate sculptures. Incorporating elements of Japanese tradition, our workshops touch upon the importance of proper posture, mindful breathing and respect. Simple Japanese vocabulary, such as the names of models we create, are also introduced.

Upcoming Workshops and Programs

YEP (virtual) – November-December 2021
We are excited to announce Beginner Origami Classes under YEP (Youth Enrichment Program) of ALC (Arlington Learning Community). Mondays 4:30-5:30 p.m. for 3 weeks. (Models to fold are subject to change based on the skill level of students).

  • Monday, December 6 Holiday Star Models
  • Monday, December 13 Candles, Colorful Wreath, Gift Box
  • Monday, December 20 Japanese New Year Models (Daruma, Yakko Kite, Spinning Top)

Register Here: Holiday Origami – 21FYPFA20 (

WINTER ORIGAMI WORKSHOPS (virtual) – 2021-2022
We are also hosting the free SJA Winter workshops! They are on the second Sundays at 5:00 p.m. (45 minutes).  Please register first and we will send you a Zoom link. The workshop will be suited for students of any age from kindergarteners to retirees looking for a new hobby. A great opportunity for a family activity as well. All skill levels are welcome. (Themes are subject to change).

  • December Workshop | Sunday, December 12th | Theme: Holiday Season
  • January Workshop | Sunday, January 9th | Theme: New Year
  • February Workshop | Sunday, February 13th | Valentines Day

Register Here: SJA Winter 2021/22 Origami Workshop for Everyone (

Looking forward to seeing you this winter.  If you have any questions, please contact us at

Past Workshops and Program History

  • Summer Youth Program – 2019
  • Origami and Paper Art – After school enrichment program at ATS (Arlington Traditional Elementary School)
  • Summer Origami Workshops (virtual) – 2020
  • Fall Origami Workshops (virtual) – 2020
  • Winter Origami Workshops (virtual) – 2020-2021
  • YEP Spring Break Camp (virtual) – 2021
  • Spring Origami Workshops (virtual) – 2021
  • YEP Summer Camp (virtual) – 2021
  • Fall Origami Workshops (virtual) – 2021
Summer Origami Workshop

We learned a lot and had great fun making origami this summer! Through a total of six sessions from July to August, students learned basic skills such as book fold and diagonal fold, as well as more challenging techniques such as petal fold and inside reverse fold. What do those terms mean really? It means that students can now have a skillset to make a samurai helmet, a paper balloon, a crane and Pikachu with ease.

At our workshop, we always start with steps to help us get ready for folding paper. We make sure that our hands are clean (no sticky fingers or covered with Cheetos powder). Sit properly in front of a flat surface without clutter. Have a long spine, relaxed shoulders and neck, we take a deep belly breath in and out. Now are ready.

The easy-to-follow instructions from Michiko and Seiko helped all students at different skill levels create adorable origami models. The workshops also introduced Japanese names and pronunciation for each model. The instructors enjoyed being together with SJA students and having the fun of folding origami as much as kids did or better.

Fall Origami Workshop

Fall workshops were fun; we folded many models related to the holiday season, getting into the festive mood.