October 29, 2015

Mel's International Department Outing Experience

During test week the International department visited the Imperial Palace (皇居) and Yasukuni shrine (靖国神社) with the purpose of learning about Japanese culture and history.


The part of the trip that interested me the most was the story of the 47 ronin. The story starts a Lord named Asano, who was continuously taunted by a corrupt Lord named Kira. Eventually Asano could no longer take Kira's teasing and insults and swung his dagger at him on imperial soil; the penalty for doing so being death.

In 1701 after Lord Asano was ordered to commit seppuku (ritual suicide), his servants and samurai now had no master. 47 of these samurai decided to hatch a plot of revenge on Kira for the sake of their master In order to avoid Kira's spies the men lived new lives, with the leader Oishi constantly drinking and spending his time with Geisha in order to make Kira believe the samurai had given up on any idea of revenge.

Oishi's plan worked and Kira relaxed his guard, allowing the samurai to enter the palace grounds and kill him. Of course like their master Lord Asano the punishment for this crime was seppuku and yet they had killed Kira knowing the punishment they faced. The story was extremely popular in Tokyo in Kabuki theatres due to the 'bushido honour' of the loyalty the samurai showed for their master.


Peter told us this story whilst we stood in front of the place where Kira’s murder took place and so it had a very powerful effect [Actually, it was the corridor where the inital fateful attack by Asano on Kira happened - PW]. I had heard of the story before, but hearing it in more detail was an interesting experience.


October 24, 2015

Meg's ID outing experience

Hi, Meg here!

I'm going to talk about the places that I went to at the Tokyo imperial palace grounds.
On October 21 we went to the imperial palace.


One of the places that we went to is the Edo castle grounds. First when I went there I thought it was huge. It was surrounded by huge big blocks of walls all the way around, but it was not to far from Tokyo station. I thought that it must have taken many years to finish building it all.

We sadly didn't get close enough to the nijubashi to be able to take a photo this trip. Here are some swans instead! - PW

Next is the Nijubashi bridge.

We went to the entrance and there was a big mon (gate). We tried to go in but it was closed. I wondered why so I looked it up and it said that they only open the entrances on January 2 (when the Emperor greets the citizens for the new year) and December 23 (the Emperor's birthday).

But from the view it looked very beautiful so I was sad that we couldn't go in.


While walking for a long time around the old castle grounds, there were a couple places where we could rest .

We stopped at the inner park. It was clean and very green every where [This is where the old Daimyo had their houses, close to the shogun's castle, in the Edo era -PW]. There were some people resting and sleeping there on the grass. I think it is a good place for people who want to stay in a quiet place without any disturbance.

It was a very beautiful green place, so I think that I want to go there again .

October 16, 2015

Teresa's post for October

Hello! Teresa here.

I have officially visited all of my classes; however, I have yet to team teach with some teachers because of exams next week. Things have been like a roller coaster in terms of work, but I find the workload similar to my university class loads in the States. These are always manageable with planning and preparation!


Outside of the classroom, I started to explore my surroundings. One stop from my apartment is an extremely amazing park with exercise machinery and a soccer field! Hopefully I have the inspiration to continue working out.


I also visited the shopping district closest to me and found a store that sells Hokkaido cheese tarts for 200 yen. They are so famous that people actually wait at least 15 minutes to buy one. Also, the shop allows a person to buy max 12 tarts due to great demand! I am definitely going to buy one next time I explore the area.



October 10, 2015

Connor on the up- good luck!

The International Department would like to extend our congratulations and wish the very best of luck to our 3rd year international athlete student Connor, who has now has returned to Australia to pursue a professional career in soccer!

Connor was also selected in the Australia national U20 squad that went to Laos to qualify for the AFC U19 Asia Championships, held in Bahrain next year!


Connor was announced on the Football Federation Australia site earlier last month. We hope that his hopes and dreams are realised, and that there is good news to share when he comes back for his graduation ceremony in March!

Peter Williams
International Department Coordinator

October 9, 2015

A message from Sora

Hello. This is Sora.

I took part in my first school festival in Japan.

My class held an escape game, I decorated our classroom with my classmates, I drew a sign with my friend. The day before school festival, we had a beautiful classroom.

The day of the school festival there were many booths and shows around the school. It was very lively. It was different from Taiwan's school festival, I was very happy.


[Sora came to Japan and joined Seiritsu in April. She is studying in the full time course so she can attend university here in Japan in the future. BR]

October 8, 2015

Peter Sensei and Brent Sensei at the Seiritsu Kindergarten Sports Festival!

Both Peter sensei and Brent sensei teamed up alongside fellow Seiritsu karate coach Morii sensei to take the kindergarten karate class through their demonstration at their Undokai on October 4.


This year the focus for the kids was to be as loud and try as hard as they possibly could, and they did really really well! They wowed the parents with their kicking and punching, as well as showing that they could move well too!

Good job everyone!

Peter Williams
International Department Coordinator / Kindergarten Karate class instructor

October 6, 2015

Teresa's September web post!

Hello all! Teresa here. =)

I have officially spent over a month in Japan as an assistant language teacher in Seiritsu, and it has been a blast. Days spent in Seiritsu are filled with students either screaming “hello” or silently whispering a greeting. As an Asian-Fijian-American, it took students a while to realize my “foreignness,” but eventually students started to greet me in English; however, I still get the occasionally “konnichiwa” in the hallways. I like to reply back in English, which doesn’t fail to shock students. :D


Besides having greetings, I also started to assist classes. My schedule has yet to be completed, so I’ve been like a freelance worker. I am supposed to arrive in school by 8:00am, but I am usually sitting at my desk by 7:30am due to the fear of being late. I tried to time myself to be in school by 7:45am, but it’s been a little difficult to do so!

After the morning meetings and greetings, it’s about 8:30am. Then, I sit and wait for Japanese English Teachers (JTEs) to ask for classroom assistance. I found that most students are unwilling to speak English, but their comprehension skills are terrific! I will need to work harder to elicit their English responses.

One of my all-time-favorite moments in school though is…. LUNCH TIME. Seiritsu has the best kaaragedon ever, meaning I will gain about three pounds a month here. All I can say is that it’s so delicious. Needless to say, I love to eat. I wish I had recess with students to work the weight off!

Apart from work, my fiancé and I have been exploring the grocery stores near my apartment. We have been slowly learning how to cook with the ingredients in Japan. The biggest discovery is saba fish and the amazing fish grill that does not exist in the States. Without any seasoning, saba grills into a salty, butyraceous (buttery), and full meal. It is a perfect dish to eat with rice.

In summary for those who did not read everything, Japan has been delicious so far! I’m learning new things each day and that includes things not related to food. ;)


October 5, 2015

Melissa's first month


After only around two weeks at school here at Seiritsu, preparations began for the one and only culture festival. The festival itself was just after the rice field outing and silver week, so it felt like one big holiday. On Thursday and Friday students started decorating their classrooms with balloons, cardboard, paint and of course pictures. My favourite classroom was 1-H who created a giant cardboard ‘Tori’ in their doorway to mimic a shrine for their festival themed classroom.


My class made a movie and so the classroom was divided into two with one half playing the movie and the other half doing festival themed games such as goldfish scooping (with toy goldfish!)


The festival itself had a really nice atmosphere with the chance to socialise with students from different year groups and classes and also explore the school. There were so many different themed classrooms with a maze, treasure hunt, American cafe, manga room and fortune telling just being a selection of them. The culture festival was a fun and new experience and unlike anything I’ve ever been a part of before.


October 1, 2015

Peter Sensei on TV!

Peter here;

Karate practitioners and athletes worldwide celebrated on September 28th after it was confirmed that karate will be included in the list for proposed sports at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.

Alongside karate, baseball and softball, roller sports, sport climbing and surfing were also announced as potential sports to be selected at the final vote, held at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics next year.

As part of the announcements, each sport's national governing body gathered to hold a media conference, and I was honoured to be asked to be part of the presentation, distributed worldwide over the internet and various news stations.



Held at the Japan Karate Federation headquarters in Tokyo, alongside Japan national team members old and new, national high school karate championship winners, and national coaches, I was interviewed as a representative of the international karate community. Although I was originally going to speak in English, it turned out that I also had to speak Japanese too, to the amusement of the press! Hopefully I did a good enough job!



It was an incredible event, an a privilege to be able to be part of history. Certainly it is something that I will always remember.


Let's make sure Karate is selected for Tokyo 2020!

Peter Williams
International Department Coordinator / Karate coach



about Seiritsu

Seiritsu Gakuen is a private co-educational high school created in 1925 and it is located in Tokyo, Japan.

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