Sensei Scramble



Spring has come, and with it a fresh new earth. The Japanese school system flows with the seasons, and the new school year (which is divided into trimesters) begins at the beginning of April every year (in the US, most schools start in September if I remember correctly).

Along with new students, in Japanese schools spring also brings new teachers. Whereas in America it is common for teachers to get hired and keep their position for many years in the same school, the Japanese have built into their schools a system of rotation where teachers are switched around to new schools (and often new cities) every few years. At first it seemed to me that such a system would make it difficult for both students and teachers to adapt, but in the course of my time here I have come to prefer this system of change. Life is defined by change and whether we like it or not our lives will always be in flux. If we accept the positive sides of change with open arms though, and even welcome it into our lives willingly, we feel more empowered and find ourselves rooted in things deeper then our temporary surroundings.

Fresh faces, fresh views, and a constant process of growth and formation of new relationships. The students learn that the scenery in our drama is not solid, and with teachers switching around so much they end up forming relationships with teachers and school boards all over the prefecture.

Outside, the wind is blowing and sakura petals float gently like waves of snow in yellow light of the sun. Children are playing games, and a part of me realizes that they themselves are a part of this soft warm wind of April that is blowing through these valleys.

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