Halloween is always an interesting time in Japan: all the marketing with nothing coming to fruition. Well, it’s slowly changing. I have heard that wearing costumes has been sort of spreading. I wore a costume again this year, but instead of choosing to be something cute like I did last year as the sorcerer’s apprentice Mickey, I decided on something on the scary side. I love horror, so it was great this year.
I searched on the internet starting in July for a store that would ship to Japan. There were some sites with shipping and handling charges that I considered outrageous. Many stores did not ship outside of North America. It was rather frustrating. Luckily, I finally came across a site at the end of August that seemed legitimate with a reasonable shipping cost to Japan. I chose the headless skeleton costume and included a skull prop. The hard part was over.
I spent the last two weeks doing a special Halloween lesson. I tailored something specific for each grade. The first years watched a short clip from the Friends Halloween episode followed by a powerpoint on Halloween. Then, there was a game based on my powerpoint. The last activity was for the students to start on their masks. I informed them that if anyone wears a mask or does something unique on Halloween, he or she would get some candy. The second years started off with the same game that I used for the first years, because they already heard about Halloween from me last year. I proceeded to show short clips from two different scary movies, which didn’t go so bad. For the one third year class I teach, I showed the majority of the class an entire episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I also created a worksheet that accompanied the episode. Students who didn’t want to watch Buffy watched the Halloween episode of SpongeBob SqaurePants.
For all the classes, I encouraged wearing a costume, mask, or anything that people wouldn’t ordinarily wear outside of their home. I was hoping for English teachers to also take part in wearing a costume. One by one, I witnessed the teachers rejecting the idea. For some of them, the idea of wearing a costume is ludicrous because of their status as a teacher. I didn’t agree and told them that it would just make them all the more appreciated. Usually, this was when it was more apparent that it’s about the embarrassment of wearing a costume than any other excuse. Did many students wear something? Not really. Only a few handfuls actually wore at least a mask. I still gave candy to students who tried to do something different on the spot. For example, there was a kid who wore his jacket like a stray jacket. There was another kid who took my skull and pretended to use it as a bowling ball. I was overall more pleased this year compared to last year’s lackluster effort. Here’s to next year being over the top (although I don't expect it)!
Stay tuned next week for another update!
Je suis allé à une fête d’Halloween. Aichi JETs l’ont organisé et il était très bon. Quand j’ai attendu pour le train, des personnes me posent pour une photo. J’ai vu que les autres personnes m’ont regardé. J’étais comme une célébrité. Il était intéressant, mais quand j’étais dans le train, il y avait une fille. Je n’ai pas voulu elle effrayer. J’ai caché le crâne. Il était bon qu’elle ne l’a pas vu.
今週の聖書の詩: “If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
- Luke 11:13 (NIV)
This verse really spoke to me. It’s amazing how all we need to do is open our hearts and be filled with the Holy Spirit. This isn’t about the spiritual high people may get from worship service or fellowshipping. It’s about something infinitely greater.
今週の写真: Considering Halloween just passed, it’s only fitting to include some pictures from Halloween. 1) A student in a costume. I have another picture with a bunch of other students wearing costumes, but some of their faces are not covered. So, I don’t think I can post it; 2) AJET Halloween party; 3) I’m the headless skeleton. Unfortunately with the flash, you can see me. Most people can’t actually see me through the shirt unless under the right circumstances.