Every year the kids at my kindergarten gather together to perform a number of songs, plays, and musical numbers. This was my third run though the event, and more and more I’ve come to see it as what it is. While some of the stage props are made by students, it seems that most of them are done by the teachers. These teachers decide everything and do what is more or less a parade of the kids before the parents, seemingly to justify their time there. I’m sure that this isn’t the case, but since I’m not blinded by having my own spawn up on stage, I can take a slightly more critical stance.
Makita Sensei and I spend Novembers getting the kids ready to sing and dance to a couple of English songs for the program as well. They are never too difficult, but with all the parents there its good for them to see what we are actually up to every Friday morning. This year, for the older kids we went with ‘Head, Shoulders, Knees & Toes’ and ‘Activity Commands’. I think everyone knows the first one, and the second one is just the kids doing a few actions. Run, Walk, Clap….STOP!!! (everyone freezes) and finally ”jump up high!”.
With the smaller tots, we went with ‘Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear’ and ‘Open, Shut Them’. The first involves making teddy bear ear fists, and then doing a certain gesture. Then, the other is a fairly uninteresting number where we open and close our hands, throwing in a clap or two on command, and doing a sort of bounce dance.
Each of these two performances took about 3 minutes each, and for the rest of the time I just had to endure another two hours of ticking things off the playbill. Unfortunately I couldn’t look too disengaged, since this is my livelihood but I at least had a friend there to keep me company, and record the video above… We were out of there before noon, and then Makita Sensei treated us to lunch at a little golf themed restaurant named Birdie. The food and company were both great.