So March has arrived yet again.  And it’s coming close to the end of the school year here.  With that there are tons of events happening.  One of my favorite events is the 6th grade Farewell party.  It’s called the Okurukai in Japanese.  In this party what happens is the kids do different performances.  1-5th grade do some kinda performance for the 6th grade and then the 6th grade return the favor by doing something for the other students.  To me it’s the cutest thing ever.  I’m such an attached sentimental teacher sometimes.  But watching this event shows the difference between my schools.  One of my school majority of the students did dance performances.  And the other one did a lot of skits.  But there are some things that are similar and I wonder if they are something that is incorporated in all Japanese performances like this.  At this event as well as the Sports day event (where the kids also do a lot of performances) they do a modern day Soran Bushi dance.  After hearing the song so much I went to research it.  It’s an old traditional song started by fisherman in Hokkaido.  To me there is one signature move and phrase to this dance, the chorus.  Where someone “Yasa e en ya sa dokkoisho” in the song and the kids normally shout “dokkoisho, dokkoisho”  Which is loosely translated as “Put your back into it. Heave, ho! Heave ho!” and the kids are just shouting ‘Heave ho’.  It’s quite an interesting dance.  Here’s on version of it.  (These aren’t my kids btw)

Another thing that is commonly done is a Japanese drum selection.  The way this is done is amazing.  There is a lot of order involved and when done correctly it sounds awesome.  I don’t have much explanation for that though.

This one is different obviously since it’s another school but the performance is very similar.  There is a lot of moving around and no one misses the beat.  At the most sometimes the kids get a little offbeat.  But they’re kids I can imagine that’s no easy task.  It’s interesting.

Beside this performance there are other things happening.  The actual graduation, teacher’s parties.  The farewell party is my favorite.  I just remember March last year was very expensive.  Can’t say I’m looking forward to that part.


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