Japan Update: School days at Shizouka Eiwa

Seven SMS students are participating in a student exchange program with Eiwa School in Shizouka, Japan. Below, some of the students share observations and reflections about school life in Japan.

Yesterday was our first day of school in Japan and it was very different from a typical day at St. Margaret’s. Here at Shizouka Eiwa, school begins with a 10-minute homeroom at 8:15. Our first class is Chapel, where everyone prays and announcements are made. After that, we have a homeroom block where we work on our Sports Day cheer and this blog. Next, we have two school classes (these change each day). Each class lasts for 45 minutes and there is a 10-minute break in between so that we can go to the bathroom and get to our next class on time. Later, we have a lunch block and two more classes. We really liked English because we got to sit and talk with the other Japanese students to help them practice their oral English skills. Math was the most confusing subject because many of us could not understand what the teacher was saying. Once classes are finished for the day we return to our homeroom to clean the floors, chalkboards and desks. School ends at 3:30, but many students stay until 6:00 because they take part in clubs that meet twice a week. There are many clubs and they all sound fun, but many are very competitive. Some of us have decided that we want to see what the cooking and tea ceremony clubs are like. Despite the fact that it is a little hard to communicate, we are enjoying the school and are looking forward to the rest of the week.

- Kim & Kaesha

Here are some basic English/Japanese translations that help us get through our day:

Hello - こんにちは (Kon'nichiwa)
Good bye - さようなら (Sayōnara)
Good morning - おはようございます (Ohayōgozaimasu)
Good evening - こんばんは (Konbanwa)
Please – おねがいします (Onegaishimasu)
Thank you - ありがとう (Arigatō)
Yes - はい (Hai)
No - ノー (ee-eh)

- Jenna

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