Sharing is Caring


April 29, 2019


Dear Mom and Dad,

Today, there are some parts of Tokyo that are a bit quieter than usual. It’s because it’s the start of the Golden Week holiday!

Some of us are excited for the holiday– our last day will be tomorrow. Some of us will go out of town or out of the country; some will have special visitors coming to Tokyo. Some, like X, Kiki, and Y, will be going to Cambodia to see our Cambodia friends and the school we helped build. More on that later!

Speaking of special visitors, we had one today– well, actually, 3 special visitors! When we packed away, Z’s dad, grandpa, and grandma came over! Z told us that they came all the way from Michigan, U.S.A. Z’s grandma told us that she has a school back in the States, and that she teaches children same as our age. How interesting! Then they showed us a map of Michigan– it looked like a mitten. They also showed us a book called “The Legend of Michigan”- they said that we could keep it in school. Thank you so much! Then they brought out a couple of treats for everybody: there were dried blueberries, cherry and raspberry preserves, and– AND– Hot Wheels toy cars! WOW! They said it’s something like a special souvenir from Michigan, as there are a lot cars manufactured there. This made our eyes gleam with excitement!

After that, we asked a couple of questions, and we learned that Ford cars were made in Michigan, so that may be a reason why there are a lot of cars made there. Michigan is also near Canada, which meant it can get really cold there, with lots of snow. There are also lots of brown bears around the mountain (“That’s why we live at the bottom part,” Z’s grandpa told us, heehee), and rattlesnakes.

“What’s a rattlesnake?” V asked.

“It’s a snake that sounds like a rattle, and the tail goes ‘Tss, tss, tss’” Z’s grandpa said. Hmm, just like our shakers here. Jamie’s grandpa also said that these are poisonous and extremely dangerous!

“Just like in Kiki’s home!” Q said. Oh, we remember that. Kiki then proceeded to tell the story to our visitors of how their neighbor in India caught a king cobra in their backyard. Ooh, scary!

“But we also have snakes in Tokyo, right?” Pauline said.

“Really?” Z’s grandpa asked. Kiki then told them the story of how someone had a huge pet snake that escaped, and some have seen sightings of it around the park. Until now, we still don’t know if the snake has been found.

Raccoons can be found in Michigan, too– they love rummaging around in garbage, just like crows do here in Japan. They are cheeky little creatures who love to climb up houses– sometimes they get stuck in the chimney!

Z’s grandpa told us that there are lots of hamburgers and hotdogs in Michigan– just like in Tokyo, you can buy sushi, tempura and ramen anywhere.

We said a warm “THANK YOU!” after our chat with them; we always love having visitors come over to our class. We hope that we’ll see them again soon!

After snacks, Pauline asked us to gather around the brand– new Hot Wheels cars, and some of us couldn’t help but get excited. We counted them- there were 31 cars all in all!

“So…. What do you think about these cars?” Pauline asked.

“We need to use gentle hands,” W said.

“Yes, we should use gentle hands,” D seconded.

“The cars are beautiful!” A exclaimed.

“Hmm.. I wonder why cars is faster than us?” N wondered out loud.

“I wonder why petrol can make the car go faster?” O mused.

“Can we put them in our car box, please?” G asked.

“We shouldn’t jump on them, because they might break,” F said.

“Yes, no stepping on them, too!” L agreed with her.

“We shouldn’t throw the cars when we’re playing,” G said.

“And no kicking cars,” Q said, together with W.

“Car falls down and breaks,” F said.

“Don’t throw cars on your friends,” R said.

“No break the wheels like this,” X said, demonstrating how the wheel can be removed.

We then remembered we have 31 cars… then we have more in our car box… so—

“We must be so lucky, don’t you think so?” Pauline asked.

“Yeah!” We answered.

“But, if we’re so lucky that we have lots of children, then, there are some children that—” Pauline started.

“— that are not so lucky, like our friends in Cambodia,” K finished for her.

“Yeah, they don’t have cars!” Z said. Our teachers asked us what we can do with our cars.

“Maybe…. We take this and this (Indicating one big box, and one individually wrapped car), and then all is for Cambodia (Indicating 1 more big box, 1 small box, and 8 individually wrapped cars). Z suggested the same amount.

“Since we have lots of cars in our car box, maybe we can give all the new cars to Cambodia,” X suggested. But, one of our friends commented that he really likes the green car and wants to keep it for himself.

Kiki then explained to us the difference of a “need” and a “want”. Need is something like food, water, clothes– if we don’t have it, then we might get sick. Want is just like for toys– we want them because they make us happy, but without them, we would still be okay.

“So what’s important,” Kiki began. “To give the car to someone who has lots of cars already, or to someone who has zero cars?’” she asked. We all answered “Zero cars”.

After that, we decided to give 1 big box and 1 small box of toy cars to our Cambodia friends– we even made a video message for them saying hello, and explaining that we are giving them the cars as presents.

We thanked Z again for the remaining cars that will be saved here in our classroom, as it will be a wonderful reminder of the time when his grandparents flew all the way from America to come visit us here in Tokyo.

It was definitely an interesting day filled with enlightening discussions. So, how about you? How was your day?


All the children in Petals Class


Did you see our picture with our bluish– purple tongues? It goes to show how much dried blueberries we ate during snack time– heehee!