Wednesday, February 18, 2004

Clean It Up

One of the many huge differences between being a kid in school in Japan and in the States is that here no one really has to clean up after themselves. In Japan, from pre-school on it's standard procedure that the students clean their own classroom. I'm talking sweeping and scrubbing the floor with cleaning rags. There is no janitor who comes in like some magical cleaning elf after everyone has gone home.
In Japan cleaning the classroom is as much a part of the curriculum as anything else. Check out this site to see how it's done. Even if you don't understand Japanese, just go to the site and start clicking on the cleaning implements. Not only will you hear how to pronounce each item, you'll see how to properly use them.
It seems too bad that kids here aren't really taught in school how to clean up after themselves. They sort of put their own stuff away, but the real cleaning happens when they aren't around. It never really enters their consciousness. That's a shame.

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