The Year of the Rooster

Our second day into the new school term and we welcomed back Meg, Nobu and YeonJae. We continued working on our art for the New Year, the Year of the Rooster and had fun playing with the trains and joining the tracks. Our teachers also put out some drawing for us with markers, coloured pencils and sparkly pens but none of us showed an interest in drawing there. Our teachers are trying to think of a way to stimulate our interest in drawing however they also feel that what we are doing with the other art experiences and games and toys, is just right for us. We are grateful to have choices in our class as well as sometimes being guided by our teachers; to work at something that we may initially not be interested in. “One never knows, do one?” This is a saying from a Broadway show called “Ain’t Misbehavin” which Shelley remembered from “long ago”. The original saying is from a famous jazz pianist called Fats Whaller. You never know if you do something that you didn’t think you could do; you never know if you taste something that you think you don’t like; you just never know!

    We spent a long time playing with the animals and the blocks on the mat but the trains were the most popular. Miles and Owen love our dress up and imaginative play area, with their favourite thing being to take one of the mobile phones, and talk on it.

  Goh san made her “shuji” and made one that was different from our one. It also means rooster but she did the Chinese character for rooster. We sang our “Hello” song and we all knew the words of the song and were able to sing our names clearly saying the words. We smiled a lot when we sang the song as we feel that it is like our special class, welcome song. It makes us feel so much a part of our Petals Class family. We changed the calendar and Griffin knew that today is Wednesday and he found the card with the word “Wednesday” on it. He knows the “w” sound because his brother’s name is Wesley and the first letter is a “W”. Hisami introduced us to many of the things that are particular to New Year in Japan. We looked at pictures in a book of people going to pray in the temple which is called “hatsumode”. There is a special way to pray and we will go to the temple on the way to the park tomorrow, to pray just like people did on the 1st January. There were pictures of special food called “osechi ryori” and “ozoni”.

 “Osechi ryori” is food that represents health, happiness and good harvest, which is prepared ahead and stored in a special box made from lacquer. “Ozoni” is soup with mochi inside. We will make mochi on Friday. The games that you play during New Year are “hanetsuki” which is played with a “hagoita” and a “hane” which is a metal marble with a feather attached to it. We are going to decorate our own “hagoita” to take home. “Karuta” is a game of cards, “koma” are spinning tops and “tako” is a kite.  Hisami played the piano and we sang the notes and then “Twinkle, twinkle, little star” and “ABC song”. We sang the “ABC song” using a sad voice.

In the park Charlie climbed the climbing wall many times and has mastered climbing now. Meg and YeonJae hung upside down on the monkey bar. YeonJae was able to hold for more than thirty seconds. Miles loved running in the green area, around and around. When Shelley came into the room during the morning, we were so happy and ran up to her for hugs. She was in a meeting and we know that she loves us and misses us, so we wanted to hug her. We also miss her when she is not here. Goh san was in our classroom today with Hisami and Liezel. Thanks for a lovely day at school and see you tomorrow. Enjoy the sunshine this afternoon!


All the children in Petals Class.

Ohana International School