April 18, 2016

New International Department Teacher: Welcome to Seiritsu, Coren!

Hello there! My name is Coren Cogdell, and I’ll be joining the International Department at Seiritsu Gakuen. I’m from Atlanta, Georgia in the U.S., but I’ve been living in Japan for four years now. In fact, I’ll be celebrating my Japanniversary next month (presents, please)! I spent about three years in Tochigi, where I also taught English, before moving to Tokyo last year.

Coren, with the giant that is Saijo sensei!

I’m looking forward to working with everyone else here at Seiritsu and helping students with their international studies, English, or whatever else they may need. I was an avid traveler, but have decided to hang up my knapsack for now (packing is a hassle, :/ ). But I hope to instill and foster in others the passion for communication and cultural-exchange that I still carry with me so that we can all learn, grow, and care for one another together. Nice to meet you everyone!
Hakuna Matata!


Coren Cogdell

International Department Coordinator

April 15, 2016

JET teacher Teresa's April Blog Post!

Top of the mornin’ to ya!

You know spring break is beginning when a handful of family and friends visit you! I even was able to sneak in some days to visit my friends up in Gunma.

My first March adventure was in Shibukawa, Gunma where I came face-to-face with the glorious mountains and the winds that could knock a child back 3 feet called karakkaze [Karakkaze means 'empty wind - it's the bitter cold wind from the north that's passed over the mountains, losing all its moitsure as snow - PW]!


My biggest find though was a pair of sandals probably made to fit a giant. Luckily, I didn’t meet that thing!

At the end of my trip, I found a huge fish and of course, I had to pretend to kiss it.


That following week, both of my sisters in America travelled all the way to Tokyo. My little sister has never been to Japan, so it was exciting to show her Japanese culture for the first time. My older sister has been here two times before, so she was a veteran!

The day they left, my (future) in-laws landed. Goodness, guiding people around a large prefecture like Tokyo is honestly exhausting and bone-breaking. ε-(´・`)

I look forward to a quiet house in the near future.

April 15, 2016

JET teacher Laurence's April Blog Post!

Hey everyone, Laurence here.

This month started on high note with the sakura in full bloom!

This might be bit cliché, but coming to Japan and being able to watch the sakura in full bloom had been a dream of mine for a long time.


I love flowers so that was one of the reasons why but frankly, to me going to a hanami meant that I had accomplished something. That I had somehow managed to come to Japan and stay long enough to saw the weather change and the flowers bloom. I took a lot of pictures, but for the sake of keeping the size of this blog manageable I am going to post only a few.


During my time off this month I decided get my translation muscle working and take part in the locJam, which is an international translating event.


For this special contest, we had to translate a fictional board game called “The Hotel of Madness” (which I realized only much later was directly inspired by The Shining) from English to a language of choice (within those available on the list). The word count was around 3,000 words, but the real challenge was to edit the graphical elements of the game as well make it so my translation fit into the existing formatting of the game’s manual. Lots of time spent into that. But I got it done! We’ll know if I won in June, but even if I don’t win, it was still nice to do some translation work for a change.

See you next month!

Laurence Dube

JET Assistant Language Teacher

April 15, 2016

Emilie's Spring Vacation Blog Post!

Emilie here! This is my spring break blog. ,

My spring break started earlier because I went back to Canada for a vacation for 2 weeks. Canada was amazing. I got to meet my best friends and catch up with my other friends. They hadn't changed at all (although, some of them had).

This is one of the pictures. This picture was taken the day I arrived and my best friend Dana came to meet me.


A day later Dana slept over at my hotel and the next day we went to surprise our friend Danielle. I didn't tell her that I was coming back to Canada. When she saw me she started crying :( and all three of us had this moment XD and we ate at Boston pizza after! XD


This is the picture with us three having fun! :))))


Me and Dana went to West Edmonton Mall (WEM) , WEM was the largest shopping mall in North America and the tenth largest in the world (along with The Dubai Mall). It was the world's largest mall until 2004. We went to galaxy land. Galaxy land is an amusement park inside of WEM.


I had so much fun!! Thanks Dana!

My friends still had school so I couldn't hang out with them in the day time so I did after school.

We did so many things. I want to say all the things we did but I can't! XD

These are my favorite picture from Canada :)




MY BIRTHDAY! ( March 30th)

I turned 16 :)

I got to spend time with my family :)

My brothers family and my other brother showed up for me :)

They surprised me with cake!

April 8, 2016

Welcome to Seiritsu Gakuen, H28 first years!

On April 7, hundreds of new students took part in the Seiritsu Heisei 28 (2016-17) school year's entrance ceremony, and began the next step in their academic journeys within the Seiritsu family.

For the high school students, this will be the most important three years of their lives so far, as they try to enter the best universities in the region, or become professional athletes in our athlete program.

For junior high school students, this is the beginning of an even longer six-year journey, where they will begin to discover who they are, what they are best at, and how they can make a positive difference for the future of Japan.


Sadly, the fine weather didn't hold out as hoped so outside was pretty cold and wet, but the reception by the new homeroom teachers and Principal Fukuda was warm enough to keep it at bay.



Good luck to everyone who has joined us for this year! Ganbatte!

Peter Williams
International Department

March 25, 2016

Gab's March Life Blog Post!

Hi everyone Gab again!

This month life at the dorm has been relativity smooth this month as its slowly getting warmer and the students are rarely coming to school, so it's given me some extra time to do my own Japanese study, do my own training and have more time to rest. I'm now starting to adapt to the Japanese diet and am having rice for breakfast, lunch and dinner and actually starting to enjoy it! The Japanese diet includes a high amount of carbohydrates, but lacks other nutritional benefits, so I've been having fruit (apples and bananas) in my room as an available snack and I've been buying tomatoes. My parents had also sent some treats from back home, which was very nice as I had been craving them for a while.


Training on the other hand has been very hard since we are into preseason and has been mainly focusing on fitness, with high intensity running and high intensity training games. In my spare time I do my own personal running training to work on my fitness. I have also been doing core strengthening.

We have played a couple of practice matches and have been playing well, beating Maebashi Ikue 4-2 a very well known high school who are ranked 3rd best high school in Japan for its soccer. Personally I have scored 3 goals with multiple assists as well, and I've been loving every minute of it.


I look forward to what the future holds, and can't wait for the season to start!

March 18, 2016

Gab's Nikko Blog Post!

Gab here!

All the international students went on an excursion to Nikko to explore the area, where there are spiritual and traditional shrines and temples.

We caught a train from Kasukabe to Nikko very early. When we arrived the weather wasn't the best as it was a freezing -1 degrees and there was a little snow as well.

We walked through the forest looking at the different buildings all with different meanings and unique styles. Most of the buildings had animals and mythical creatures on them which had particular meaning to them as well. We could see gifts that countries had sent to Japan.

Though the weather wasn't great it was still a great experience and was great to learn some Japanese history and about Nikko. It was also nice to freely speak English for a change and spent time with people who share a similar life to me.


Seiritu's International Department strives to enrich international students and returnees with cultural knowledge and experiences to help them better understand Japanese society and traditions. This includes excursions such as visiting Nikko.

Why don't you come and visit too? Download an application form for gap studies by clicking here!

March 17, 2016

Jet Teacher Teresa's End of Term Post!

Teresa here!

This month, my fiancé and I set out to hike our first mountain, Mount Takao in West Tokyo! The commute took about two hours, and when we arrived, we mentally prepared ourselves as we absorbed the blue sky.


Initially, we wanted to climb Route 6, which is an unpaved route that brings us to Biwa Waterfall, but it was CLOSED! We were looking forward to seeing the the waterfall too..

So instead, we hiked the paved path up the mountain. According to a sign, it usually takes only 45 minutes to climb to the summit, but we took 2 hours. We need a serious workout session soon.

20160317_02.jpgAlong the way up, we saw this beautiful structure, which prompted my fiancé to say, “Takao-san? Don’t you mean Tako-san?” I promptly started to fall over in laughter because tako is octopus.

Even better though, I met a real life Eevee. Look at the ears!


The end prize was the best. I saw Mount Fuji shining in all its glory!


The hike was full of tears, laughter, empowerment, and fear, just like a good (and perhaps cheesy) movie. If you like an easy hike while feeling like a movie star, visit Mount “Tako!”


Teresa Fong
JET Assistant English Language Teacher

March 17, 2016

JET Teacher Laurence's End of Term Web Post!

Laurence Here. Ah, spring!

Trees are blooming, nature is blooming, love is booming, lattes are…also blooming?



That’s right, it’s Sakura season here in Japan and so, temporarily, everything will be flowery and pink.


It’s also starting to get warmer here, finally! I can’t believe I made it! I’m also currently on the hunt for plane tickets for this summer. I will be going back home during mid-July, escaping the much dreaded Japanese summer. I’ve heard that last year last was especially hot and as a result, I didn’t really appreciate my first Japanese summer experience.

This month, I attended a Japanese graduation ceremony for the first time. It a lot more formal and longer than it is abroad. Case in point: I barely remember mine in high school and it wasn’t that long ago. Even though I haven’t been here for long, I could understand how important this day is for the students and their parents as well as the teachers. There were a lot of tears shed, but they were lots of smiles and laughter too. I felt very privileged to be able to take part in such an event.


As you might have read in other blog posts, this month, the international department students and teachers went to Nikko! It was a long trip, but I really enjoyed looking at the beautiful buildings, learning about the history of the World Heritage site as well as spending more time with the international students, who we haven’t been able to spend a lot of time with lately. I definitely want to go back at least once before I leave Japan.


A local snack I really enjoyed was the sweet and salty yuba fried manju. The combination of the crispiness and the saltiness of the batter and the softness of the manju mixed with the sweetness of the sweet red bean paste was an eye-opening experience. That’s when I realized that when push comes to shove, I don’t really need a man in my life, you know? Just manju.


See you next month!

March 8, 2016

Seiritsu High School Graduation; Congratulations, Class of 2016!

Peter here,

On the fine warm morning of Sunday March 6, Seiritsu's third year high school students took part in their final home room and graduation ceremony.


This year was particularly special, as it was the first graduation for students who have been at Seiritsu for the whole six years of junior and senior high. It was an emotional time for both students and the teachers who saw them grow into who they are today.


The Graduation ceremony and final home room is a chance for all classmates and club team mates to say goodbye. After receiving their graduation diplomas, the students leave into the courtyard where a 'hanamichi' (flower road) of their 'kohai' (juniors) are waiting for them. lots of pictures are taken, lots of tears are shed, and lots of celebrations and singing happen.





Among the graduates was international student Connor, who has signed professionally for Brisbane Roar FC, who are currently leading the Australian A League! Congratulations, Connor, it was a pleasure to have you here for three years and we look forward to seeing your future successes.


It was also an emotional time for me, as I am becoming a full-time Karate instructor in Saitama from April. I will still be at Seiritsu in a marketing and support role, but this change in work pattern means that, after five years, I will no longer be able to coach the Seiritsu karate club. Good luck guys, I will come and cheer for you whenever I can!


From now until the end of term on March 19th, the school will enter a slower-paced schedule, as students and staff start to prepare for the next school year.

Peter Williams
International Department Coordinator



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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