An icy cold day in Tokyo

We welcomed Santiago downstairs for his first day at Ohana. He had a great time and is learning the rules and how we play and pack away and share. He ate his very first obento and we are not sure if he really liked it. Tomorrow we will see if he prefers the rice and chicken. He liked the animals and he understands English. We think that he can teach us some  Spanish and when Olivia comes back they can speak Spanish to one another. Olivia, we are missing you and mummy!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWe spent time playing on the mat and at the tables we had a few activities to do. We made a beautiful gift for our parents and today we completed the card for them. The card has a beautiful message inside and outside we decorated it with cupcake holders in green, red, gold and silver. We made our own designs and then we wrote inside the cards. Some people may not be able to understand what we drew but we just like to use different colours and make patterns at this stage.

We had red and green strips of paper on the table to make circles but we were so busy that we didn’t have time to do them. We will try again tomorrow and in fact we need to sit with an adult when we make them as we have to twist the paper into a circle and then pull tape from the dispenser to close it.

During circle time we sang our “Hello” song; “Twinkle twinkle little star”; “There was a farmer had a dog” and “ABC”. We tried to sing a Christmas song but were not sure of the words so Liezel and Sabine sang by themselves. They sang beautifully. We danced to the Wiggles CD and then built an enormous tower with the Lego. Our teachers wanted us to work together as a team so they encouraged us to all play with the same toy and work towards the same goal. The tower was so tall; even taller than some of us.

 We have a table filled with Channukah things and tomorrow we will be learning about it, lighting the Channukiah and making latkes. We played OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAwith the spinning tops and are curious about how their patterns disappear when they go round and around. Upstairs many of our friends, who were not at school on certain days last week, completed their activities. Miya and Emily made their red and green pictures using a variety of collage materials. They also made their star gifts. Emily chose to make a golden one and Miya chose a multi-coloured one. During our circle time we started by practicing saying “hello”, “good morning” and greeting our friends and teachers. This is a very important thing to do when we meet someone and especially if they say ‘hello” or “good morning” to us. We are learning about “politenesses” and etiquette. We focused on the person who was sitting on the right side of us and then we turned to the person sitting on the left side and did the same thing. We asked them “How are you?” as well.

 We then categorized animals into three groups viz. farm, jungle and grassland. We took an animal and then worked out which group it belongs in. We read a wonderful story called “How the birds got their colours”. It is a story from the Australian dreamtime. Long ago the people living there, created their own stories and beliefs and this is one of the stories from that time. We did another activity later in the day at the table which was making daisy chains. We had a selection of strips of paper in many colours and made them into circles. We glued one end and closed the circle and then looped another strip through to make another circle. We did this many times until we had a multi-coloured daisy chain that had a specific pattern. We could use two or three colours for our patterns. The last activity that we did today was writing our names on Oliver and Eva’s card. Today we had a wonderful surprise. Gento and his mum, Yaya and his big sister Kyara arrived back in Japan from London yesterday and they popped in to visit. He is so big and he remembered exactly where the container with the cars was in both classrooms. He seemed to remember all of us and he even remembered his rivalry with Tokutaro who couldn’t understand why he was pointing at him and saying “No!” We loved seeing him and hope that he will be back with us for the start of the new school year in August 2013.

Love always Shelley, Darren, Nanako, Ayaka, Christine, Goh, Liezel and Sabine.