Tuesday, September 30, 2008

English Club

Monday after school I held an open English Club day for my base High School students. When I arrived here, the English Club was dying and had only 2 girls in it... So I tried to pump up the club by having a crazy fun filled hour with games, songs and a bit of learning...

The crazy thing about Japanese club activities is that they are SUPER SERIOUS!!!!! Once you join a club - you are chained to that club for life. They meet EVERY SINGLE DAY before AND after school. There is no such thing as changing clubs. There is no skipping out on a day... They practice day in and day out... Baseball, Judo, Kendo, Brass Band, Chorus, Art, Calligraphy, Volleyball, Archery, etc...

So the difficult thing about the English Club is that I want it to be just once a week on Mondays after school... but since the vast majority of students are already involved in a club - they can't opt out on Mondays to join us!!! So sad.

So after school on Monday I wandered the hall waving my American flag with my hat and star & striped beach ball wrangling in the few students who weren't already involved in a club... We put fun posters around advertising the day. In the past they said the max number of students they had was 4!!!!! So when 12 students showed up we were sooooooo excited!!!!!

I put out a bunch of American comics, toys, games, flags, maps, photo albums and more for the students to look at.

As students entered I also taped an animal to their backs and we played 20 questions in small groups to have them guess their animal... Then the 2 girls in the club and I had a crazy beach ball quiz game and taught them the corresponding sign language for the animals. They go ga-ga for sign language!!! We also did the hokey-pokey and a few other activities. I finished the club by showing a fun power-point presentation with loads of pictures of American High Schools. We talked about the similarities and differences between Japanese and American Schools. They were in shock!

Was a fun day!!! Now we are planning to throw a Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas party!!! I might try to do mini parties at lunch time so more students can participate. :)

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