I like yasumi jikan, aka break time, the time between classes in junior high. I usually end up walking down the halls to talk to my students, good and bad. I’ll probably get a “You’re handsome!” yell from a first year kid, a heartful “Hello!” from Maido, and Yuta, the worst 3rd year, trying to make a fool out of me.
Recently, I had a nice encounter with Maido and Tsu. I was watching Tsu slide down the hallways without lifting up her shoes. After watching her for a few seconds, she asked me “Can you do it?” Of course, I could. Maido joined in. I’m sure it looked silly watching an adult and two 14 year old girls sliding down the hallways. Then we had a race afterward: I beat Maido easily but Tsu kicked my ass…she’s a pro at sliding!
Later that day, before 5th period I saw Maido and Tsu walk into the English classroom. I found it bizarre as they never come in the classroom unless it’s their period to study English.
Me: “What are you doing here?”
Maido: “Oh hello Diego! Is it okay to draw on the blackboard?”
Me:” Sure, go for it.”
The two start doodling random stuff like characters from Anpanman as well as Doraemon. Then they started to randomly write English phrases. “I like oranges,bananas, music…hmmm, what else should I put?” Maido asked.
“I love Diego!” I joked.
Everyone laughed and Maido said “Okay! I do love Diego!! And Miss Kitada (my JTE)!)”
She then proceeded to doodle some more and wrote more stuff like “Diego is a nice looking guy” and other things. Class was about to start so she said “Oh, I should probably erase this huh?”
“No, no! It’s amazing. Keep it there!” I said.
“What about Miss Kitada? Won’t she get angry?”
“No, she won’t!”
“Why?” Tsu asked.
“Because she’s nice!”
“Whoa! Diego is so cool!” Tsu yelled. I still don’t understand the logic behind that but I’m okay with it.
“Diego! Make sure Miss Kitada sees it!” Maido said.
“Okay! Now go to class!”
“Thank you! See you soon!” Maido said with her signature farewell. I managed to take a picture of the blackboard before anyone came and tried to ruin it. It’s not just elementary kids, junior high kids can be cute too!:
Another recent memory was watching my third year boys fake pro wrestling with each other. I’m sure everyone has done this at some point but these kids were really good at it. They would grab each other, drag them to a wall and pretend to smash their head. The reactions were over the top, yet spot on. I taught them how to do the stomp punch that all the pro wrestlers do back home. I really got a kick out of it. Another week we were watching some third year boys hang out by the entrance outside. We then commenced a fake shootout using sniper rifles and machine guns. I loved doing this stuff when I was 8 and here these 15 year old kids are still having a blast at it. It’s a lot of fun to mimic the reactions of getting shot; you can act over the top when you die or mimic the bullets deflecting your body. The kids always get a kick out of it. Wandering around school during yasumi jikan sure beats sitting in the staff office!