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An Alternative to School Dances

2012/08/31

I personally don't know of any Japanese schools that offer school dances (including prom) as an activity.  According to all American 80s movies I've ever seen, the cool outcasts and loners don't even want to go to such an... "educational" event.  I think they may be on to something.

 

It goes without saying that school dances are incredibly awkward for many students, and I'm not sure that schools have ever thought deeply about why they even offer such an event.  I can see prom as being a tradition that will be hard to break out of, but what about all the other dances?  What if there were an alternative?


I think teachers in America should turn their attention to the most famous school event that goes on once a year in almost all Japanese schools:  the School Festival.  All homeroom classes, clubs, and extracurricular groups plan a stage event, food stall, or other fun, unique activity (i.e. haunted house, café, giant puzzles, etc...) that can be done in a classroom or within school grounds.  They often prepare after school over a month in advance, practicing dances, finalizing menus, and creating signs and posters for each event.  The festival is often spread out over 2 days on the weekend so that parents, family members, and outside visitors (including prospective students and members of the local community) can enjoy as many activities as possible.  Usually there are so many interesting events that it's impossible see everything you want to see even if you attend both days.

 

Students working together to execute a plan that they created themselves in order to put on an amazing school festival for their community?  No, you're right.  Let's just make sure we keep them 6 inches apart.

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