Elementary schoolchildren learn about Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake

Children at an elementary school in Nishinomiya City in western Japan's Hyogo Prefecture have been hearing hands-on accounts of the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake from survivors of the disaster in the area 28 years ago.

Five students from Takagi Elementary School were killed in the quake on January 17, 1995.

Two "reconstruction bells" were installed beside the school's main entrance half a year after the disaster.

On Tuesday, the bells were rung five times, one for each victim, while a silent prayer was offered.

Two teachers who experienced the quake spoke to the children via a video link. One recalled that houses in her neighborhood collapsed and roads to and from school cracked in the quake. She told the children of the importance of preparing for possible disasters.

A fourth grader said he heard about broken glass in the school after the quake, and was reminded of how scary an earthquake could be. He said he will stock up on food and do other things to prepare for disasters.

Another fourth grader said she will ring the bells and work hard on behalf of the victims.