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Sports day at the Niihama Elementary School

Written on: Saturday September 22nd, 2007

A journal entry from: Memories of Niihama

Last night I had two students mention about an event to be held today in the Elementary school near-by. The first was a parent who was looking forwards to going and watching her daughter participate; and the second person was a young boy about 12 or 13 years old.

As the mother described to me, it is similar to Track and Feild days back home. But it is held on the week-end and is a bigger event then what we have. Also, she had mentioned that dancing is included as one of the sports. At first I thought she meant traditional dancing or a talent show but instead it is cheerleading. Kind of came as a surprise because I never considered that I would find a lot of cheerleading in Japan. From our balcony we can see the school yard and this morning when I got up I was further surprised to find a big production number. At least 30 students and many sets of pom poms in the feild. Hum, I think culture shock is not always about differences between cultures but sometimes occur when you see something similar. Yes, cheerleading is not a big thing at home as it is in the U.S. but I thought it would be even less prominate here. Now, whether this continues into high school and university I am not sure. But will probably be asking a few students about it during classes this week.