Friday, 22 March 2013

End of the school year

The school year in Japan runs from April to March, and today was K's last day. He has now completed one year at kindergarten, and has one more to go before starting elementary school. When he started kindergarten last year he couldn't really speak Japanese at all and sometimes had difficulty expressing himself. It never seemed to bother him though, and now he is as much of a chatterbox in Japanese as he is in English.

I think it's been a great year for him there. He settled in very well, and was happy to go from the very beginning. He's made some good friends and has lovely teachers too. They don't overtly teach academic subjects, but focus on craft, music, physical activity and social interaction. K has had a lot of great experiences, such as sports days, the school play, day trips and picnics, and 'exhibition day'. He has learnt to do origami and to skip, he can swing around the horizontal bar on the climbing frame and he has become an enthusiastic artist and inventor.

Each month the kindergarten holds a little birthday ceremony for all the children born in that month. Being a March baby, K has had all year to look forward to his turn. I went along last week, and saw him join the other crowned children proudly on the stage.

In turn, the birthday children were asked to give their name and class, and to say what they wanted to be when they grew up. I couldn't catch a lot of the replies, even though they were using a microphone. Several girls said they wanted to be 'a mum', and there were also the usual 'nurse', 'cake shop owner', 'soccer player' and 'superhero'. What do you think K said?

'I want to research space' (宇宙を調べたいです).

This prompted several 'ooh's from the watching parents, and knowing nods from people who knew him well.

So today K said goodbye to his teacher and his classmates from Sakura (cherry blossom) class. The 3 classes in his year will be shuffled to make 3 new groups from April. He found out today that he'll be in Fuji (wisteria) class, but he won't know who the teacher is until school starts again. K is excited to be moving up, and hopes to get Teacher K, because he does magic tricks...

No comments:

Post a Comment