Sunday, January 27, 2008

pictures from my new elementary school

lessons and lunch at Nagahama Sho - 23.jpg
Originally uploaded by Jason In Japan.

I started teaching occasional lessons at Nagahama Shogakko, which feeds my new Jr High - Hamayama Chu.

So here are some pics from Nagahama - a great new bunch of kids I get to meet and teach.


5nen sei at Nagahama Sho - 1.jpg

Saturday, January 26, 2008

The 2005-2006 school year

last lunch break with 05-06 9th graders - 2.jpg
Originally uploaded by Jason In Japan.

I was looking for pics from my first Sports Day at Taisha Chu where I had a digital camera - which took place in Sept of 2005 - and I couldn't find any on my Flickr site.
So after some searching - I realized that I never uploaded pics from the 2006 Sports Day to my online photo album. And I also forgot to upload other fun pics from the 05-06 school year.

So here are two random shots from that year. The one above is of the group of 9th graders that would hang out with me after lunch during the cold winter months. We'd chat around the stove and just before they graduated in March of 2006, I snapped this picture. They are all now 2nen sei in various high schools, and I will see some of them graduate from HS in March of 2009. Wild!
I still remember all their names and have been lucky enough to run into a few of them since they left Taisha Chu.

The photo below is from the aforementioned '05 Sports Day. It features some of my current 9th graders back when they were 7th graders. I need pictures like this one for my upcoming movie I will make to show the graduating 9th graders at their farewell party.

Enjoy the trip down memory lane and I'll have more pics up soon.


Sports Day - Sept 2005 - 47.jpg

Monday, January 21, 2008

Himeji Castle and Kyoto pics

Himeji Castle - 29.jpg
Originally uploaded by Jason In Japan.

Going thru some of the pictures I took last year, I noticed a few batches that I never posted here.
So I'll try and get them posted in the next few weeks.

This batch features some great shots of Himeji castle from a day trip I took out there after going to USJ in late October of last year. And some pics from a costume parade in Kyoto that happened the day before I went to Himeji.

I highly recommend Himeji as a tourist destination if you can find the time to visit. It's a great castle.


kimono shop window in Himeji.jpg

Friday, January 04, 2008

pics from Xmas Day and other random shots

Santa Anna and Jason
Originally uploaded by Jason In Japan.

Hey Gang -

Another grab bag of pictures. I've included ones I took at school on Christmas Day, like the one of me and Santa Anna above. (It makes me smile when I type "Santa Anna" - maybe you have to be from Texas or Calif to understand)

Also pics I took of the girls on the Track N Field team:

The 8th graders...

8th grade girls on the Track team

and the 7th graders...

7th grade Track team pyramid

Also included are some pics of my new display in my large language lab classroom at Taisha Chu. After 4 years, it's tough coming up with new ideas for decorating, but it gives me something to do on days where I have to work but have no classes. And I enoy it.

New Year display at TJH LL room - 4.jpg

I hope you're having a good New Year's week. More updates soon.


Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Hamayama JH Bunka Sai - Day One

HJH Bunka Sai - Day One - 86.jpg
Originally uploaded by Jason In Japan.

About half of the 140 pictures I uploaded from Hamayama Jr High's Culture Festival I took on the first of the two days - Saturday, November 17th.

The picture above features one of the many "talent" acts performed by this year's 9th graders. Only the 9th graders can perform - it's like a senior privilege. Here a group of 5 girls, with two of them dressed like boys, sang a song, and then did a short dance. You can see some of the dance at my YouTube site.
Many of the kids sang, and one band played (an all-girl band playing an Avril Lavigne song), and some of the boys did breakdancing.

I took pictures from the whole day, so browse thru the pics on my Flickr site when you have time.

Here is the 5-girl band performing "Girlfriend" by Avril
(you can also see some of this performance on my YouTube site)

HJH Bunka Sai - Day One - 74.jpg

Lots of pics of the kids hanging out in the gym and in the halls:

HJH Bunka Sai - Day One - 68.jpg

I also walked around all the classes - 7th grade thru 9th grade and snapped a bunch of pics of the kids eating bento - we didn't have school lunch this day.

HJH Bunka Sai - Day One - 6.jpg

There are also some pics of the various displays they had set up highlighting some of the projects the kids had been working on, like an art display and a crafts display and a display of the clothes and practical items they made in Home Ec class.

I like many of the same rock bands this student mentions in this art piece...

HJH Bunka Sai - Day One - 102.jpg

It was a really fun two days.

Hamayama Jr High - Bunka Sai - Day Two

HJH Bunka Sai - Day Two - 8.jpg
Originally uploaded by Jason In Japan.

I've posted about 140 pictures from the two-day Culture festival (bunka sai) that took place at Hamayama Jr High on November 17th and 18th.

Day Two was filled with singing and speeches. The traditional class comepetition took place on Sunday, with each of the 12 homeroom classes singing one song together on stage in front of the rest of the school. They were judged on piano playing, conducting and overall performance.

HJH Bunka Sai - Day Two - 61.jpg

I took lots of pics of the kids hanging out in the gym between songs and of the winning class, pictured above.

Satoko being "Jack"

We also enjoyed a taiko drumming performance put on by local high school students from nearby Norin HS.

Norin HS Taiko performance

the weekend before Xmas

JH Ensemble Concert - 4.jpg
Originally uploaded by Jason In Japan.

So, in addition to going to Hirata to watch my Chorus Club perform at a charity concert on Christmas Eve (I already posted a video from that day below)...

Christmas Concert in Hirata - 7.jpg

I spent the weekend before Christmas in Izumo watching my students and former students perform in an ensemble competition.
Saturday, December 22nd (My brother Paul's birthday - Happy Bday Paul!) - I went back and forth between 2Chu and the local music hall to watch my Jr High students play in various groups - like the 4 saxophone players above to larger groups of 8 or 10. Everyone I saw played pretty well and at least one group made it to the prefectural competition in February.

Then, on Sunday, December 23rd I went back to the same Jr High and music hall to watch my former students, who are now at Taisha High School, perform. They all did excellent and I'll talk to them again soon to see if any of them made it to the next level.

HS Ensemble Concert - 1.jpg

It was a busy three days before going back to school on Tuesday the 25th for closing ceremonies, but it was fun. It sure beats shopping at some crowded mall. :)