Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Last Days of School

 My last day of elementary school was on March 15th. I got to watch part of the practice graduation ceremony. The students sang several songs. There was the school song which everyone sang together, a song that all the students sang, a song that just the 6th graders sang, and maybe one other. I remember how some students at my elementary school complained that we had to sing one song (I Believe I Can Fly), lol.

Several classes gave me going away gifts.

The 5th grade class gave me a picture of the whole school, and all the 5th grade students signed it.

The present from the 4th graders was my favorite. After they presented it to me at the end of class, they all sang a song for me while the teacher played the guitar. It was so cute!

Each student made origami for me. Some of them were really fancy! I also love how the sign says "Good by." Haha. 

I didn't teach 3rd grade that day, but the whole class came to the staff room to give me a poster. Each student in the class drew a picture. Several of them drew pictures of them playing 4 Corners, which was their favorite game.

These have nothing to do with the last day of school, but there was one student who liked to come to my desk and cut out paper dolphins for me. She cut them out really fast so she must make them a lot.

The 18th was my last day at the junior high school. In the morning there was a "completion celebration" for the 1st and 2nd graders. It was a boring ceremony with speeches and a lot of bowing. In the afternoon we had the graduation ceremony for the 3rd graders. It was an even longer and more boring ceremony with even more speeches and bowing. Plus, like the elementary school, they sang several songs. Towards the end the students went up as their names were called and received their diplomas from the principal just like an American ceremony. But overall the ceremony was pretty different than an American one because the whole school was involved. At my schools in America, underclassmen didn't have to attend (and usually didn't unless they had a sibling graduating) graduation ceremonies.

Japanese school ceremonies are so much more formal than American ones. I thought it was interesting at the opening ceremony, but throughout the year I kind of got tired of the formality.

At the end of the day a teacher gave me books that each class had made. Each book contained letters written to me by every student in the school. Some of them are in English, some in Japanese, and some a little of both. Luckily the students used pretty simple Japanese so I can read and understand most of them.

I don't have any pictures of those books right now, but I do have some pictures of random student drawings throughout the year.

Those two pictures are from when the elementary students played Pictionary. 

When the 1st grade junior high class learned the verb "can" we did an activity where I asked the students, "Can you draw Pikachu?" and then they had a couple minutes to draw Pikachu.

Ummm... or several students I think the answer to that question is, "No, I can't," lol. Though some students did well. I picked this one as the winner.

Overall I had a fun year teaching at both of those schools and it was the best job I've ever had, but I wasn't that sad it was over. One year of teaching was enough.


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