Japanese Sport Day
Image: Group photo at the field on sports day 2023
What do we do on Sports Day in a Japanese School?
At Rochester Japanese School (RJS), we believe in mind and physical fitness! Once a year, in the Fall season, we put together a sports day event for all students and their family members to participate. Sports days (formerly known as health sports day) commerates the opening 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
The following at some of the main activities that we participate:
Radio exercises (This is a warm-up exercise!)
Balls in the bucket
50 meter dash
Sports day is one of the days that brings families together. It is a bonding experience where siblings, children, parents, and friends participate in respective events and have fun! Groups are split into red and white. Depending on the number of participants, we will split them equally. Some of the events require the participation of two-three people (e.g., 3 legged race), whereas some would need the whole team to participate (Tug-of-war).
We do not have a designated field for the event, so we made use of the open field near the building where our classes are held. Running in a small field was not ideal but because we wanted to give children an experience of what Japanese sports day is like, we modified some of the games. Depsite the space constraint, it is safe to say that it was a successful event! The weather was great and everyone had fun.
Just like in the Olympics, games bring people together. While not as competitive as the Olympics or other professional games, we still have fun because at the end of the day, it is all about a positive experience for the children.