学校の生活 – School Life

On sunday, I was working at the school on a little bit of yard work.  Basically all the kids and their parents come and do this once a year, and it was appropriate for me to do the same.  It was actually pretty cool. Afterwards, there was a volleyball tourny between the teachers and parents, based on the corresponding grade of the students’ parents, and the age taught.  My massive ups proved useful, though my skills did not. I was better than I was bad but ended up losing both of the matches in the 3rd set.  I also managed to shred my boxers going for a distant ball.  That was pretty cool, at least no one noticed.  Basically, I am of the opinion that organized athletics are so sweet, but especially when nothing is on the line and it is fun.  And of those, volleyball is one of the best.

I also went to the store today, to get some food.  I just stocked up on meat.  You can usually get stuff that is like 20-50% off because it is nearing expiration.  My philosophy?  Food doesn’t go bad.  My backup philosophy?  Eating expired food wont make my life 20-50% worse, so I stock up on the cheap stuff.  This philosophy applies to most things in the store.  Meat price drops are universal, but most things will fall under this umbrella: fruit, juice, kimchi, veggies, bread, etc.  For these latter items, I don’t really recall seeing things like that in America. It’s really great, because I don’t care at all and can get a week of groceries for like 25 dollars.  Generally, any meat plus rice = full.  Also, I eat the school lunches, so that price is added to my grocery bill, but still a very reasonable total under the sustenance column.
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This is the safest possible way to change a light bulb. Also, you can get an idea of my school and students in this pic. There are like 60 total at the middle school I teach at, they wear uniforms just like all of Japan, and then this was taken in the lunchroom.  Also, the Sensei later went on to break a ceiling tile because his method was much worse than mine.

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This is a panoramic of the outside of the middle school I’m based at.  Japanese schools are always about function rather than form, and most schools are akin to this one


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I had my boxers showing a tiny bit, and some student came over to pull my shirt down.  I was like, errr, thanks…?

There was something I was asking a student about the other day, and she didn’t know how to explain it in English, as it was a word definition I was curious about.  She came up to me the next day and asks if I had figured it out.  Upon my no response, she presented me with it translated, and written out in 5 different ways (English, Kanji, Romaji, Katakana, and Hiragana).  I Like that.

School is great.  I really enjoy working with the children and find that my favorite ages to teach are 1st-4th.  I have full control over planning and no curriculum to follow.  Also, those kids are the perfect blend of excited 100% of the time, interesting, and I can still enjoy talking to them in Japanese.

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Picture of me receiving some flower seeds from a Natsuki, a 1st grader.

Another picture of me on the job, as Justin Sensei.

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