March 28, 2019

Australia Homestay 2019

We just got back from our annual trip to Australia. Someone from the International Department takes a bunch of junior high and senior high students to do a homestay near Sydney. They spend one week in the home stay and learn how people live in Australia. Some schools only do a few days but we do a full week. This means many of the students can make good relationships with the families. It also means they can change their thinking towards learning and using English.

It is a great experience for the students and the families too.

If you can read Japanese, you can see some of the blog posts on our main school website (and if you can't, you can still look at and enjoy some of the pictures):

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March 12, 2019

McJETs and More

JETs are everywhere, and the event I went to in February really sealed the case.

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In the JET Alumni Association Reception, I met many distinguished JET alumni with glittering careers. One example is Jonathan Kushner, a McJET, for he is the current Vice President of Corporate Relations at McDonald's Holdings Company Japan! Thanks to his connections, we had a grand meal in a classy building. Those fries were not good for my health, but it doesn't hurt once in a while!

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I also had the pleasure of meeting Paige Cottingham-Streater, the executive director of Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission, who is involved in many U.S.-Japan relationships, such as this coming Olympics. I strive to become like her. She wears many hats and thus, flies from the States to Japan frequently! I asked her how she handles her jetlag and she calmly told me that your body gets used to it. Incredible!

In addition, I met the USJETAA Executive Director Bahia Simons-Lane, who had recently visited Seiritsu Gakuen with Noyuri Ishikawa, the Youth Outreach Program Coordinator from the U.S. Embassy. We were so immersed in our conversation about study abroad for Japanese students, its declining rates, its barriers, ways to overcome them, and more that they spent an hour extra at our Seiritsu Global Center! Due to hunger pangs, we ended the meeting, but we enjoyed sharing the resources we had.

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I really enjoyed the opportunities I had to meet with these powerful leaders. I felt really inspired with what they have done and are doing for the U.S. and Japan.

March 9, 2019

Kindergarten Graduation

Our kindergarten is having their graduation ceremony today.
Our International department is active with the kindergarten as we teach both English and karate to the students.

Over the last few years a few of our kindergarten graduates have been joining our junior high school. I wonder who will be joining us in the future?

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March 7, 2019

William enjoys fun volleyball day at school after school final exams

In this term, our grade 2 held an interesting ball sports festival, to celebrate finishing our final exams. All the students went to a gym in Kaminakazato, which is a few stops on the train from our school.
According to the plan, we were supposed play volleyball and basketball, but unfortunately that there was no time for basketball in the end.
Although we couldn't play basketball, the volleyball play really satisfied us a lot. I lost two of my tournaments, but the matches were still unbelievably enjoyable.
One team in my class was champion of volleyball, so my class was very fortunate. We got some presents from my school, such as soft drinks and donuts.
If there is another chance, I'd like to attend this ball sports festival again.

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March 6, 2019

Sophia looks back on the school year

Today was the last full day of school for this school year. I'm really glad I was put into the class I was in. The students are really friendly and I was able to make many friends. Although I am a little sad about class changes and being separated from the friends I made, I am sure I won't forget the memories I made with them. I am really grateful for the friends I made, because they helped me with everything I didn't understand and know how to do. They helped me adjust to the Japanese school life a lot faster than I thought I would have. I am excited to see what my new class will be like.

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March 5, 2019

Scarlett's first graduation ceremony

As it is my first year at Seiritsu, it was the first time I have experienced high school graduation. In the UK we do not have a ceremony for high school graduation, we only have this when we graduate university. Because of this, I did not know what to expect.

It was amazing to see all the parents and teachers dressed up. My favorite part of the day was watching all the students leave their homeroom and walk down the corridor by SGC (our office) being greeted by the first and second years. It was so cute to see the students giving their senpai presents and flowers and seeing them leave the school for the final time.

It was an emotional day for everyone and I wish all the graduating students the best of luck in the future!

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March 4, 2019

Gaoussou says goodbye to the 3rd year students

Last Sunday we held the ceremony for third grade high school students. It was a chance for them to say goodbye to their teachers and to the second graders. There was a lot of emotion between students and teachers. I personally wish all the graduating students the best of luck in the future. Omedetou!

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March 3, 2019

Graduation Ceremony 2019

The 71st Seiritsu Gakuen Graduation Ceremony took place on Sunday, March 3, 2019 at 10am here at the Seiritsu Tokyo Campus.

The graduating class was made up of 347 students, 202 boys and 145 girls. We had 2 students from the International Department among them.

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The school gymnasium was completely decorated with red and white traditional celebration banners covering all the walls and a large stage built. Parents arrived about one hour early, the students about half an hour even earlier to gather together in their homeroom with their homeroom teacher. The students wore their regular school uniform, not a new suit or gown like in Western countries.

During the ceremony, in addition to official speeches, the class president for each class was called up to the front and they received all their classmates' graduation diplomas from the principal in a large stack. Since the ceremony was short, starting at 10am and ending about an hour later, all the students returned to their homerooms where they individually received their diplomas and said their final good-byes. The parents all stood at the back of the room to see their children complete their high school years, most taking loads of pictures.

The final graduation custom for Seiritsu is the 'the last walk' in which the graduating 3rd year students walk through a narrow human corridor in the main school courtyard, lined tightly on two sides by many 1st and 2nd year students, normally bunched together in their clubs, plus parents standing behind them. It is very much like a winner's parade, as the graduates walk slowly out of the school for the last time, and their junior club members run out to give them flowers and presents as they walk by. Today's weather was not cooperating though and, with the rain, this tradition had to be moved indoors - perhaps for the first time.

It was always an emotional time. Everyone took pictures with everyone else, the tears flowing freely, even from the teachers.

For the graduating students: Good luck in the next stage of your life!!

March 1, 2019

Graduation preparations

The tests have finished and almost all of the students are off today. But some are here for their club activities. Half of the teachers are at school today preparing for the high school graduation ceremony on Sunday. The other half are out at the special race by the river.

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Those of us at school are all helping prepare for Sunday.

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The big day is almost here!

March 1, 2019

Seiritsu Marathon

Today our junior high students and the high school students who came up thru our junior high were off on a "marathon" near the river. This is from our Japanese site. You can enjoy some of the pictures.

Good job everyone!



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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