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Impressive Things in Japanese Schools
The identification and recognition of them depend on the observers and their cultural background and interests.
In this article, I would like to give emphasis on the seven things that I always consider laudable and impressive in Japanese schools.
I could not contain my admiration that it drove me to share them here.
For Japanese people, these seven things are just common practices that are part of their routine.
But for a foreigner like me, they are simply beautiful and worth sharing with the world.
On my first day at school, I was almost late when I arrived at the door of my classroom.
I was expecting a rowdy class since they were in First Grade Junior High School (Grade 7).
But I did not hear any noise.
I thought that was strange.
When I entered the room, all of them were quiet with their eyes closed.
There were two students standing in front of the class.
It was so quiet and it was so unusual to me.
When the bell rang, the two students in front of the class said: `Please, open your eyes, please stand`.
Everyone stood up, we started the greetings and the class went on.
In the next period, it was the same scenario before the class started.
Then, I realized that it was part of their routine.
This routine practice is called "mokusou" in Japanese.
It may literally mean "silent contemplation"
The students can usually do silent contemplation when they close their eyes.
Hence, "mokuso" in Japanese schools means closing one`s eyes and contemplating quietly.
It has its roots in the ancient practices of meditation related to kung fu or Buddhist meditation.
In my opinion, this is a good habit since it helps not only the teachers to start the class easily, but also the students to dispose themselves to the process of learning.
A Japanese colleague shared one time that "mokusou" is really to help the students focus their attention on the new learnings that they are about to receive.
(Read more here: https://teacherdoms.net/
Teacher Doms Network / Dominic Bryan San Jose