Thursday, October 29, 2009

Thursday, October 29, 2009-

CAUTION: CULTURAL DIFFERENCE AHEAD! I had it in my mind to every once in a while not write about my day but rather about some of the main differences I’ve noticed between America and Japan. Today seemed a fitting time to start seeing as for one hour at the end of classes we as the students had to stay and clean the school. You see here in Japan it is up to us to keep the school clean. We do the sweeping, dusting, light changing, garbage removal, bathroom duty, and even some of the lawn work. When I first heard this I was impressed. I assumed that because the students knew they were the ones cleaning the building everyday they would cause less of a mess. WRONG! At least in my fishery school the convenience of having a janitor to take care of the building is sorely missed. The fact that students know they’re the ones cleaning the school seems to give them the idea of getting away with being messy. At least that’s my read on it. I do think that giving the students responsibility is a good thing but the fact that students give each other haircuts in the middle of the classroom floor, spend most of the cleaning time playing catch with a golf ball (at least that’s what most of the third year boys did today), and do not always replace the toilet paper in the bathroom is somewhat of a struggle. I am sure in some schools the system works very well, but out here for the country folk, a little dirt ain’t hurtin’ nobody.

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