Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Sunday, November 7, 2010
- I started with Mexican food for lunch which wasn't that good.
- We then got to ride the little tea cups in Ariels Underground Cove. (Disney does an AMAZING job at creating the environment and makes it the "happiest place on earth!"
- I was told to have a "gouza dog" while I was there so I had that for dinner. It was different and ok but nothing exciting really.
- Throughout the night, we hunted down every popcorn stand in the place to try the different flavors. They had milk tea (decent), black pepper (really good and normal tasting), chocolate (fine), curry (didn't try it but fittingly in the Arabian Nights section, and carmel (favorite and hardest to find!)
- We were able to watch several random shows through the day and catch a couple rides. Because we arrived later in the day we weren't able to get out "fast passes" for all the rides. (I was really fine with it really though.)
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Sunday, August 15, 2010
Next we went to Jeju Island. They call it the Korean Hawaii and I can see why. It was a beautiful island. I flew in by myself because Emily and Lukes flight was full so I went a day early. It was sunny and hot when I got there and I was looking forward to several days on the beach. I explored close to my hostel which included walking around another small island close by. It was beautiful. They arrived the next morning and we went straight to the beach. I was thankful we did because after that a HUGE typhoon rolled in and we didn’t see the sun again until the day we left. We were able to keep ourselves busy with exploring lava tubes and waterfalls despite the wind and rain. All in all the vacation was a success. I was able to experience another culture but also relax a little bit after a long semester with my kids. I am looking towards this semester hoping that it will be as good if not better than the last.
Sunday morning, we all arrived at school about the same time that school would actually start. The first shock of the day was that everyone was in normal clothes. Of course, Japanese fashion allowed the women to look similar to school clothes but it started the day off right because everyone was more relaxed. My favorite was the youngest teacher I teach with, he just finished college so we are the same age. I had always seen him in suits or sports clothes and never pictured him in street clothes but he surprised me with him trendy outfit.
So we get on this big tour bus and somehow I get shoved in the back with all the men. My vice principal, who speaks the most English, a 5th grade teacher and this young teacher…all of us in the back. It ended up being really fun but at first I was skeptical, these men ended up being my buddies for the day. We played Bingo on the drive which was good because that’s something I could do. It lightened the mood and allowed me to relax. We stopped at a dessert shop, what looked like a European church and then the Cheesecake factory. Japanese cheesecake is not the same as American I come to find out which was a bit disappointing but still good. Lastly, we went to an outlet mall for a couple of hours. The best part of the day was that these men really did follow me around. Yuya, my youngest teacher, didn’t leave my side. It was quite funny since we can hardly communicate. He can understand more English but harder to speak it. It was an interesting day but so beneficial to really get to know these teachers and what they are like outside the classroom.
Friday, July 23, 2010
Starting this week, the schools here in Japan are on summer vacation. The vacation lasts from the end of July to the end of August. Not only is the time shortened in Japan but the role of the teachers are different as well. The teachers don’t really get a summer vacation. If they want one then they have to take off. We all come to school everyday even though the kids don’t have to. The Japanese culture is to be or look busy so that you look like you are a good worker, EVEN if you have NOTHING to do! That is me. I have nothing to do because the AET before me left great lesson plans and there are only so many decorations I can make. There is only AC in the teachers room and outside this room its about 90 degrees everywhere else in the school so needless to say, everyone spends most of their time in the teachers room. The problem with that is you must look busy and well I have nothing to do and I’m not good at doodling and I’m not a writer of any kind so I’m out of luck. There is some socializing while in the teachers room but the problem with that is I can’t speak Japanese so not many people talk to me and if they do then its just quick little things. Its tougher then it sounds. Going a whole day not having one real conversation with a person while you are surrounded by people all day is depressing. It has only been a week of summer vacation and I can hardly stand it.
Luckily, next week we have summer training with all the AETs. The two weeks following training an AET couple (Luke and Emily Martin) and I are going to South Korea! It will be the vacation we need! I am pretty excited! Sometimes I think I’m being dramatic about dealing with my situation but sometimes it just wears on you. Things will get better with a vacation. They always do!
Monday, July 5, 2010
Saturday, July 3, 2010
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Monday, May 31, 2010
Saturday, May 29, 2010
- Kids wondering around school all the time. (This isn't the case with most of them but there are a few kids at my school that I see around the school at times when they should be in class. Sometimes they even come hang out with me in the English room.)
- School lunch for everyone! Everyone eats school lunch unlike the pack or buy dilemma that we always deal with. Also the kids serve each other. Their classes lunch is delivered to their door and then they pull it out and make an assembly line for everyone to get their food.
- Indoor/outdoor shoes. The kids have shoes that they where inside and they are all identical but then they have their tennis shoes for outside.
- 4 outfits a day: school uniforms to school, normal clothes once they get there, gym clothes, lunch clothes and they where aprons for recess and cleaning.
- Cleaning the school. The Japanese schools don't hire janitorial staff but have the kids do it. So everyday after recess they all have their assignments and so they clean (or act like they do) Normally the school is more dirty after they are finished cleaning.
- Studying a foreign language in nursery school and elementary schools. I realize that English is the international language but this is prime time for kids to learn a 2nd language and we don't take advantage of that.
- No central heat or air.
- Riding bikes to school or anywhere for that matter, especially in the rain! This would never work for America as a whole.
- Airing out mattresses or futons. Things mold here quickly because of the humidity so everything must be aired out frequently to keep that from happening.
- There are about 12 different types of recycling. Ok maybe thats an exaggeration but it feels like it. Burnable and Non-burnable are the 2 main categories.
- Omiage is when you bring gifts back after a trip. Not only for those close family members but for your coworkers and such as well.
- Chonco! This has only happened to me recently but it is when a child will basically stick their finger up your butt. It's really awkward and odd but they do it to each other all the time and some of my little kids did it to me the other day. Weirdest thing ever!
Thursday, May 27, 2010
- I have been playing volleyball on Thursday nights with both Japanese and foreigners which is so fun. I think most of the Japanese would rather us not be there but we have fun anyway.
- I bought a bed!!!
- I started at my nursery school today which is teaching 4 and 5 year olds. It's quite interesting but I know that they are like sponges so I'm trying to make English fun to make them want to learn it.
- I've decided I wish everyone had a blog because I hate not knowing about peoples lives!
- I'm trying to live in the present HERE in JAPAN instead of the States. It's tough but I'm working on it.
- Plans for weekend trips are popping up all throughout June so that is exciting!!
- Simon and Mary are making plans to come visit. Any one else interested??? :)
- Communication with my teachers is getting better and better. It's a big step!
Sunday, May 16, 2010
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
- They have 2 recesses. One short one in the morning and then one after lunch.
- None of the schools have a janitorial staff so the kids have cleaning duties everyday. It is quite funny because the school looks more dirty after cleaning time then before but the kids have fun with it.
- Everyone eats school lunch. You will always have a meat of some kind, a salad/veggie type thing, a soup and milk. Sometimes you will have dessert. (I will write a whole post on lunch!)