Tuesday, September 8, 2009

School Sports Festival

Schools here in Japan are in the midst of School Sports Festival season. We really have nothing back at home that compares to what it is here but I guess the closest thing would be athletics day. However the similarities would stop there as nowhere near the same amount of preparation or effort is put in to it as is done here.

All of my schools have their sports festival on the same Sunday in two weeks time and preparations are well underway in each school. Like any event here in Japan the day begins and ends with a ceremony in which all the kids and teachers have their own special part. Today at my main junior high school the kids had to spend 3 hours outside in the blazing sun practising for the ceremony. Not only did they spend about an hour getting their bowing right to an exact degree angle, perfecting the art of organising themselves into straighter than straight lines but they also spent well over and hour working on their marching. It was quite amazing to watch actually although I felt super sorry for them all having to repeat it over and over again with no breaks in between. My favourite part is when they practice their group warm-ups... something all club sports do after school as well. Basically some terrible music is played over the loud speaker and the entire school of 173 students all stand together and stretch in timed perfection. It always amazes me how the kids seem more than happy to do these things without one complaint, foot out of line (literally) and without a single noise coming out of their mouths... until they get to the part when they all yell out "Can we do it... Yes we can" in their loudest voices.
I'm looking forward to seeing all this practice pay off at the actual festival in a few weeks time.


fergies said...

Wicked-now we'll get more videos of marching!

gareth said...

Sounds like brainwashing

Bill said...

does anyone ever fall out of step? if so what happens? does the dream stop!