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What do you think of Japan’s school education system?

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A perfect system designed to churn out youth so they are indoctrinated for a lifetime of overwork. And no, I don't mean overtime, I mean overwork.

15 ( +17 / -2 )

I think it's fantastic at the elementary school level.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

My opinion here is colored by the fact that it is exam season for one of my children who is struggling in the Japanese system, and made to feel even worse by a relentless tiger mom whose love is conditional on academic success — but here it goes...

From junior high school on up, it is a soul-sucking experience for many of Japan's youth, akin to a white collar sweatshop of endless drills and memorization.

At many schools, students are publicly ranked according to grades. Life really sucks for those that are at the bottom of the ranking.

I would say that up to sixth grade education here is very good, but after that I would recommend getting your children out of the system (if that is an option).

11 ( +13 / -2 )

Mind control.

Only yes men make it through.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Many fantastic teachers crippled by an awful system.

Abolish mandatory club activities.13 year olds don't need to be in school from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm, and they shouldn't be.

Make consequences for futoukou kids. Not showing up to school a single day of the year yet still graduating at the end is beyond stupid.

Make grades matter. A kid getting an average of 50% or less in all subjects should not be moving on, they clearly haven't learned the current year's material.

However, I have to say that if anything needs to be changed, its the parents. A good parent can make up for a bad teacher. A good teacher cannot make up for a bad parent, and there are a LOT of bad parents.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

"all in all you're just another brick in the wall"

13 ( +15 / -2 )

AtsushiEd,good comment. The Pink Floyd sum it up nicely. The Japanese system teaches kids to believe, not think. They need to be taught to think and findout what is on the other side of the wall.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Great at the ele level and then goes to hell in a handbasket.

Too much busy work, teachers too busy with too much BS paperwork, too long, too much pressure placed on tests and entrance to better schools, memorize, memorize, memorize. Students are never asked to think, they are asked to repeat and parrot. The schools themselves are horrific looking and cold in the winter, hot in the summer. When friends and afmily come they think there are prisons all over the place by the look of them. Very top down, power has been taken away from teachers and the PTA and monster parents have far too much. Overall I feel for anyone with kids stuck in the system here because they all deserve better.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Didn't go to school here so don't really know. Kust what I read on JT and see secondhand when i see class outings or schoolkids after school.... Looks ok to me.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This morning, as on many mornings, the newspaper arrived with advertisements for juku. Some of them offer classes from 9 am to 9 pm every day over the summer holidays. If the Japanese school education was any good there would be no need for these jukus.

Then again, it is often said that the schools do not teach what is needed to pass university entrance exams. Instead they have to teach LDP propaganda masquerading as "history" and other nonsense.

My son went to a Japanese primary school for a few years. It was OK but he was often bored as the pace of the lessons was too slow and too much time was spent preparing for sports day and other events. He's going to school overseas now, a happy and independent boy with two months summer holiday and no juku.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

Obviously it's not going to happen, but imagine how much more time the children would have to study other things if Japan scraped kanji practice and moved to an entirely hiragana alphabet.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

The system really helps them learn from the past to prepare themselves for the future.........

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It's closer to mutilation than education. I spent years looking at its product in some pretty good Japanese universities and it was enough to keep my son from it. It is indoctrination coupled with inoculation against all manner of outside influences and thought. It's crowning achievement is to convince everyone never to ask why. You need only concentrate on method (how, not why). And the ultimate method is the Japanese way. Hence "our culture" is the ultimate justification and thought stopper.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Dreadful. Mind numbing. (There is only one right answer for the exams.) It makes university students learning resistant and universities into rehab centers. Now with Common Core, strongly influenced by Japanese schooling, you are seeing the same effects in the U.S. Decline of creativity, teachers teaching to the exam, universities as leisure lands.

Japanese schooling produces drudges. If a Japanese Steve Jobs has made it through the system, he or she is likely not in Japan.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Schools are underfunded. Teachers are overworked and inadequately educated.

I would said funding and support for disabled students has gotten much better in the last 3 years...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I've experienced the trifecta (elementary, h/s & uni) in both short-term & long-term capacities and make no exaggeration when I say that the root of Japan's societal woes all stem from its education system. Elementary school here is an environment where kids aren't allowed to be kids. Ridiculous 'club' commitments, cram school till late & the government's answer to reforms? Reintroduction of Saturday schooling! Un-be-lie-va-ble.

Then we get to h/s, where club commitments are pushed even further - sometimes both days over the weekends. The junior-senior system is also introduced, which in turn moulds generation after generation of 'yes men / women'. As kids are still at school for far too long, paired with cram school commitments, family time is sacrificed. Even when they get home, the father isn't there. Why? Because he was a 'yes man' himself and continues this all through his working life.

Then uni - oh god where do I begin. In short, it's basically an extension of h/s. Whatever the teacher / lecturer says is taken as gospel. No discussion, nor debate - just copy the whiteboard notes till the bell rings. Rinse-repeat x 4 years.

By the time young adults graduate, they've been moulded by a system that doesn't encourage independence, nor fundamental skills like critical thinking. These are the same people who turn a blind eye to the voting booths come election time. See where I'm going with this?

THIS is Japan's biggest & most complicated problem. The geriatrics at the Education Ministry also see no issue with the system, akin to those in fellow governmental departments. So, nothing changes. Nothing will ever change here because the nail that sticks up gets hammered down by the old boys' club.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

LDP propaganda masquerading as "history" and other nonsense.

Yet, your description of your son's experience in Japan's school does not include any of which.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

I think it's a highly successful system in that it turns the majority of students into well-adjusted normal Japanese citizens. And everything that implies.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Shouldn't Japan Today provide the answer to this question in multiple choice form ?

8 ( +9 / -1 )

I personally have problems with how they (middle school and high school) tell students at least how many hours per day they should be studying.

My son was told 2 hours would be ideal but at least 1 hour per day. I told him that there is no need for him to study long hours as long as he does homework and he makes sure that he asks questions when he doesn't understand during classes.

School says one thing but that doesn't mean we parents cannot do another. Same thing about "juku".. Unless he wants to go, I told him there's no need for him to go to Juku (and he agrees). Kids who go to Juku are not necessarily smarter than others (again, my son agrees).

Schools can say what they want to say, but parents/students need to make the call when it comes to what to accept and what not to accept.

School asks kids how many hours they study before exams and kids feel like they have to study hard BEFORE exams to get high scores.. but I was actually talking with my son about this a few days ago that there is absolutely no need for him to study HARDER before exams.. What's important is that he understands daily classes and as long as he does well daily, no need to do anything special for exams. He gets "time off" from club activities during the test week, and guess what... instead of studying FOR exams, we actually go out and have some fun :-)

8 ( +8 / -0 )

All I can say thank goodness I didn't grow up in Japan, I was a mediocre kind of student did enough but realized the effort to get much higher wasn't worth it. Did ok again in uni etc, have done well in work & life, so far anyway!

If I was in Japan I likely would have crashed & burned, also I LOVED sports back home & played lots of team & a few individual sports etc, HERE I would have no doubt HATED SPORTS & passed on those as well.

And I who in their right mind wants to grow up to be a salaryman/woman etc NO THX!

I feel sorry for kids in this country the non-sense they have to go through is truly mind numbing! Thankfully we don't have kids I don't think I could live with myself putting kids into schools here, would have been international schools(unlikely) or leave, just too dismal here!

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Fouxdefa,

If you are being sarcastic then I don't think the sarcastic tone carried though the medium. I assume you are being sarcastic because of what I see as the complete disconnect with reality in what you have to say. Well-adjusted is not an appropriate word for the citizenship of Japan. Karoshi, hikikomori, high suicide rates, fathers spending no time with their children or wives, among other problems, Japan is obviously struggling greatly.

I have a great love for this country, but to look honestly at the nation requires a recognition of severe problems which are leading Japan into a terrible direction. As much as I don't like it I think that the school system (at least starting from Jr. High) is perpetuating the problem rather than helping to solve it. In order to be spared from an economical and cultural disaster within the next 20 years the Japanese school and work environments need to be completely overhauled. One of the chief obstacles to this however is that the systems are self perpetuating. I have a real concern that the only hope for Japan as a nation to turn around is for it to go through that bottleneck of the next couple decades and be unable to cope so they can shocked in to actually believing that we have to change as a nation.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I think it has good and bad. Both my kids went to the same elementary school; there was a bit of the 'everyone should be the same' thing, but not enough that we couldn't handle it. After elementary they went separate ways - daughter opted for the same local public school as her friends, which was a bit like what some here have described; way too much emphasis on 'club' and burning the midnight oil, the level of teaching ranged from above average to abysmal, and most kids went to juku (not my daughter - I supervised her homework, and she did better than her classmates who spent hours and lotsa cash on extra tuition). The school probably saw me as a bit of a monster parent, especially after I insisted they change the horrendous, riddled-with-errors supplementary texts they were using for English. Son on the other hand decided to go private, and it could not have been more different. No club except for those who wanted it (and no pressure on those who said No), excellent teaching, high academic standards, and the school made a point of encouraging students to cultivate interests outside school. He had a great time.

Neither kid turned into a mindless drudge or a yes-man, both are doing great.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

What do you think of Japan’s school education system?

A racket.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

was at a Mazda dealership in the morning as they were having there morning meeting. doing mindless speech drills on how to greet speak sy goodbye to customers. the mechanics in the background looked like a family member just died. this is the type of mindless drones the school system is expected to produce in Japan

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Western school systems: Teach critical thought and independent thinking (generalization)

Japanese school system: Teaches how to be Japanese (generalization)

I put my kids in Japanese kindergarten, but international school from grade 1.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Heavily flawed system. Kids are not taught to think, but to pass a test and make high scores to impress others. Also there is no threat of being thrown out of school, as there is no expulsion. That's probably the worst thing, I have heard horror stories of kids getting into fights everyday and they are still in school because they can't be expended.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Elementary school seems great.

But from middle school onward it's a ridiculous joke.

The approach (it seems to me) is to just keep adding huge volumes of material to study... just more and more material so there will be an ample amount for the teachers and testers to use to make the inevitable multiple choice test.

They could adopt other methods though...

They should reduce the volume but teach and test kids on how well they can analyze that information, how well they can apply it, how well they can infer principles from what they have learned, how well they can summarize and explain the information they have learned, how well they can extrapolate from it, how well they can link it to other information that they have studied, etc.

Basically, do more productive activities with a smaller volume of material.

I do find that many young Japanese are very challenged when asked to do something productive, something beyond passively answering marksheet style questions.

However, the Japanese education system seems firmly based in the convenience and brutal efficiency of the multiple choice test so I don't see much changing soon.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Too much homework at every grade.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I always had the impression of Japanese being very smart people, that was before I went there. Like many have said above,the system is geared to churn out automatons. I wish they'd stop sending their volunteer teachers to other countries, and let them slog independently.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Japan has ploblems about education system. Now we discuss about moral education which have a ploblem how to teach it keeping politically neutral. The Liberal Democratic Party argues that if a teacher teaches biased thought,he should be punished. This argument has two ploblems. First:What is a border between biased thought and neutral. Second: The Democratic Party which is a political rival of the Liberal Democratic Party is supported by Japan Teachers' Union.

What do you think about it?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Japanese people believe the system is so terrible that the vast majority of them spend almost every spare penny the have on juku. My son is 9 and there are 41 kids in his class, 27 of whom go to juku. That tells you all you really need to know. It's essentially a feudal system in that the more money you have to spend on education, the better your kid will do, especially if there are family connections. All private schooling has an element of this, but not to the same extent as here. I have 5 brothers and all 6 of us went to normal UK schools with no private education. All of us went to university in the UK and 2 of us went to UK top-ten universities. I don't hear of this happening very much over here. Regular schools are what posters here say they are, particularly after elementary school.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I think Mike Judge produced an animated documentary of typical Japanese high-schoolers on MTV a few years back.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Cleo

Can you say which school your son went to?

Does anyone have experiences in International schools they can share?

http://thelearningcurve.pearson.com/index/index-ranking

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It's obviously not doing enough to educate young people on the harsh realities of the Second World War.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The Ministry of Education has succeeded well in producing a compliant and fairly docile population that doesn't want to rock the boat. The system is based on rote learning and in some areas uncritical thinking. Yet, I would say that this is the aim of Mombusho. I have seen many classes in many subjects being taught in JHS and would say that some subjects such as mathematics are taught well and to a high level whereas English teaching is very ineffective. Some subjects only require the child to name everyday objects which appears simplistic to me. Computing classes are just a dream for the state student which explains the large number of foreigners involved in big companies here.....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I was very impressed by the elementary system. I would be happy to have my kids in it.

As most other have said from JHS and up I find it to be pretty awful. I know there are plenty of Japanese teachers who agree with me here- the teachers are way overworked. The priority needs to be on the classroom, however in some schools it almost seems like the priority is on sports first. I mean, it's freaking junior high school.

No reason for 12, 13 year old kids to be at school from 7:00am to 6:00pm every day.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Western school systems: Teach critical thought and independent thinking (generalization)

Japanese school system: Teaches how to be Japanese (generalization)

Wow. Perfectly said. I wish I had lots of cash for ASIJ, but me daughter doing just fine stateside.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Being a mother myself... I love this topic...children are overload with too much time spent on club activities Education system and juku ?????

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I understand Sharon, but what would be the alternative? School, homework, playstation, dinner, playstation, bath, playstation? IMO, keeping kids busy with a variety of activities to use up their energy is wise. More activities, cancel the Juku and the memorization/testing system.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Preschool: almost anywhere is fine for nursery and kindergarten. Nice if you can find a cheaper international one to bolster English skills.

Elementary school: it depends a lot on the area, same as in the US. If the community is educated or professional, the local school should be fine. But if you live in an agricultural or industrial area--we are in a part of Japan which reminds me of Kentucky--expect a lot of troubled kids, monster/violent/chinpira parents, and no background cosmopolitan or educated worldview in the school or community.

Jr. high and high school: it seems as bad as commenters have posted here. The system encourages dull obedience and slogging through endless mountains of worksheets and rote tasks, with "activities" and other group obligations taking up all free time. None of the junior high school kids in our neighborhood can do many of the things that American kids had picked up naturally by that age...roller skating, ping-pong, basic tennis, swimming, rowing a canoe, pitch a tent, change a car tire, build a birdhouse, put on a puppet show or lemonade stand, shoot baskets, roller hockey, basic skateboarding, spackle or paint a wall, and unless in some kind of club, throw and catch a ball, basic soccer skills, etc. They spent all their time doing worksheets or just zoning out trying to escape. And the motivation to get through all the homework and paperwork, at least in my town here, seems to be the threat of violence and bullying criticism...not curiosity or the desire to better oneself. People are pressured and forced from a young age.

And it's even worse if your children are females. There are very few positive or uplifting role models in Japan for females. A lot of girls end up fascinated by strange apparitions like Pamyu Pamyu or other bizarre iterations of unreality. If you want your kids to be creative, independent and have a life toolset that works in places outside of Japan, then get out around grade 5 or 6.

That's our plan. Fortunately, my US hometown has a large Japanese expat presence and a weekend Japanese school, so the kids could make some semblance of keeping up their kanji and a connection to the Japanese hive.

Or use international schools, if you live in a big city and can afford around US $25,000 cash per kid per year...or have an expat package which pays for that.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I think it's definitely got its problems, but it's not nearly as dire as many JT commentators suggest.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@katsu78

I think it's definitely got its problems, but it's not nearly as dire as many JT commentators suggest.

It's not simply the system itself, but what it produces. Take a few steps back and look at the problems with Japanese society. I'll let you connect the dots!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Japanese education system is pretty boring. Too much homework, too much time spended in the school. Too nych focused on memorize things. Japanese school only good to produce overwork robots, rather than nuturing inventors or leaders. Should reduce the time from 6days to 5 days. Should review the way to teach students, review learning materials, make it relavent to today era. Man, Japanese need to overwrite their entire educational system

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I view this differently compared to most above. Llok at American society and compare it to Japanese society. Violence, theft, honesty etc. Seems that the so called robot students do make for better citizens. And I talk to lots of people...adults do have their own unique opinions about global issues.

One problem they will have is they are going full steam to introduce the IB program. This program requires independant thinking, and that will be a severe challenge for most. I was asked to help out an Art Program for the IB. I refused to help. It would be impossible.

Adults do appear to turn out ok, even though over worked.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Tamarama - Not sure that we're allowed to advertise on JT. I can tell you that it's a very large private educational complex in Utsunomiya established in 1885 and run as a family concern, and the gakuincho is a politician. I cannot vouch for the other bits (it offers everything from kindergarten to university), but the 6-year top-class course (英進部) my son attended was very good.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

sighclops JUL. 11, 2015 - 12:47PM JST It's not simply the system itself, but what it produces. Take a few steps back and look at the problems with Japanese society. I'll let you connect the dots!

Well, let's take a look at that. What does Japan produce?

It produces generation after generation of literate, educated, generally non-violent citizens who are able to productively employ themselves and build family structures relatively stable compared to many societies in the world.

They produce some of the world's most popular consumer electronics and automobiles.

They produce popular culture across a variety of media that despite the noted handicap of being made in a language hardly anyone else in the world speaks, is still consumed around the world.

They regularly produce research and new achievements in technology, miniaturization, and efficiency.

Now by no means would any sensible person say Japan is the best in the world at any of these things or that Japan is without flaws or significant challenges. But it's equally absurd to suggest as many on Japan Today do, that the educational system of the world's number three economy is a complete failure. For a country without natural resources that is entirely reliant on its human capital to generate value, to have risen to the world's number 3 economic position is no mean feat. We can sensibly criticize the weaknesses of the Japanese education system (and there are many!) without descending into hyperbole or hysterics.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

OK katsu 78, question for you, would you trade your education & childhood where you grew up for whats offered in Japan??

Now way in hell I would!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

GW JUL. 11, 2015 - 10:25PM JST OK katsu 78, question for you, would you trade your education & childhood where you grew up for whats offered in Japan?? Now way in hell I would!

Good for you, I'm glad you're happy with your home country education. As for myself, I couldn't possibly say whether I would exchange what I had for what's available in Japan because swapping 18 years of my life for 18 years of life in a country would change me in so many ways it's impossible to speculate on whether or not I'd be better or worse. There are certainly aspects of the Japanese educational system that are superior to aspects of the American education system I grew up with.

But in any case, your question shifts the goal posts. I'm not saying the Japanese educational system is the best of all possible systems. I'm simply saying that it is not a failure and it produces things and people of some value to Japan. A person can prefer the education they grew up with to the education of another country without that country's education system being a total failure.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

cleo --

especially after I insisted they change the horrendous, riddled-with-errors supplementary texts they were using for English

I can imagine...

I actually had problems recently when on the test paper it says "what's the translation for -mochiron-"? My son wrote down "sure" and guess what .... the teacher marked it as wrong and said he was supposed to write "of course".

but wait a minute... don't we say "sure" when we mean "mochiron"??????

I almost said something to his English teacher (I didn't.. and perhaps I should have).

Another thing is that he was supposed to translate "Kumi went to school on Sunday" or something like that... His translation was that Yumi went to school on Sunday.. and guess what... Again, the teacher marked it as wrong.. but the important part was not the girl's name.. sure he got Yumi and Kumi all mixed up but translated the "went to school on Sunday portion.

There is no flexibility ... and I personally have problems with it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

fishy - Flexibility (or lack of) is one problem, but this so-called textbook was literally riddled with spelling mistakes and grammar bloopers (wrong tense formation, wrong number, scrambled word order etc., etc.) in places as many as a dozen on a page. I was appalled when I saw it. The school called in the printers, who claimed it had been checked by a native speaker, but there was no way a native speaker had even seen it, never mind checked it - unless it was a native speaker of Klingon. In the end I got paid to check the thing (It still wasn't a wonderful textbook when I'd finished, the content being mediocre, but at least there were no glaring mistakes), and the school got free copies of the new edition. I'd have preferred them to demand compensation from the printers and use the money to buy decent books elsewhere, but...

Mochiron = of course/sure - Yes, I would have said something (and did, in similar situations (plural). Maybe I was a bit of a monster parent. Never had to be a monster at my son's junior/senior high, though.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

My own experience is at SHS as an AET for a year and up to fourth grade so far as a parent. Elementary school seems way better than high school.

Good Kids well disciplined, taught respect (clean school, express gratitude to swimming pool etc.) Plenty of physical activity so few fat kids. Kids walk to school so few fat kids and no "paedo-geddon" type hysteria like in the UK School lunches seem very good and nutritionally balanced with vegetables and not just cheap stodge to pinch pennies like the meals on the Jamie Oliver programme. No uniform My kids enjoy it.

So-so All formal activities like sports day, music festival are over the top. Kids do regimented practice of what are mere games (tama-ire etc), and do overly dangerous activities like human pyramids (thousands of injuries every year). My kids' school's sports hall gets taken out of action during rainy season due to practices for the music festival. Is it that important? PTA is over the top. While I think its important to create a community of parents, I think the bonds created are largely superficial, as can be seen when problems like bullying occur Prison like buildings that must cost a fortune to heat and cool.

Terrible Curriculum has howling omissions and is completely out of date. Kids are taught that "chujitsu" (as in faithful to the original) should be spelt "tyuzitu" in romaji (kunreishiki). All homework appears to be for the following day, which puts continuous pressure on the kids and does not teach time management. "Do it in the only time available" is not time management. General attitude that the kids are members of the school first and somebody's child or brother or sister second. No consideration to what effect kids' school and club commitments may have on parents (who may be single) and siblings (loads of little brothers and sisters being dragged off all day every week for big brother's baseball etc.) Deliberate splitting of twins into different classes. Deliberate splitting of siblings into different teams on sports day etc. Failure to recognize the widely proven benefits of kids doing multiple sports and not just baseball/football/whatever every day. Excessive demands on parents (i.e., mothers) act as a further brake on the advancement of women in the workplace and force women into a "family or career" dilemma.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm not sure how Japanese history or science, math, geography, politics, sports etc. are taught, but I'd give the English teaching curriculum an utmost failure especially since Japan trying to fit onto the world stage as a leading industrial nation. Saying and expressing what one thinks is a cultural disaster! It needs to change but....It doesn't look good. They must grow up!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

In Japan, it's hit or miss whether at the elem. schools, JHSs or the HSs, folks. Sometimes you may even find that it's too late to change direction and that you just have to deal with it and make the best of it which will require you to find your own way through the mess, and don't rely on the teachers who should be experts about what's best for your child but quite often aren't. We have raised 3 kids and had mixed results with both public and private schools, one of which was Catholic and a dump. We did think about sending our kids to an international school here in Japan, but most of them seem to be incredibly expensive. One international couple we were acquainted with was sending their son to one and his English was quite good but he also talked like a drunken sailor. Not sure if it was true for the rest of his classmates as well, but as a native speaker I was rather impressed that he could swear better than me.

The private Japanese high school we'd sent our son to had been good before but then went downhill. The only way we could get him into the universities he had in mind was by finding an outstanding math teacher who taught privately and was far better than most at either the public or private high schools, but this teacher wasn't cheap either, although in the end he was worth his weight in gold for what was needed at the time. The teachers at his HS would give our son average grades, but they were in absolute shock when he was consistently scoring in the top 1~2% across the country nationally for all of the private high schools in Japan. The teachers would tell my wife that his scores on these standard national tests (which they all took at the same time) of private high schools in Japan were through the roof, but that they just couldn't understand it because he was always sound asleep in the back of the classroom. They were convinced that they weren't teaching him anything and, as it turned out, they were right. Well, my wife confronted him about what the teachers said about him sleeping in the back of the classroom, and he told her that what they were teaching in class was material he had already studied and learned on his own a few years earlier and that he was bored out of his mind. We felt sorry for him after that and told him to just hold on a little longer. He went on to pass the entrance exams for the Tokyo Univ. of Science, Waseda and Keio within days of each other in the same week. His HS which had given him only average grades the whole time he was there celebrated this by broadcasting this to the parents as though they were somehow responsible for his performance, but in reality they had virtually nothing to do with it.

At the end of the day, the effort the kid makes and the attention the parents give to their kids in trying to steer them in the right direction and navigate through the confusing maze of educational hurdles is perhaps what matters most. Skill & strategy are involved but also keep in mind that each child is unique in their own special way and that there is no such thing as one size fits all. What works effectively for one child may not work so well with another child, so you have to strategize accordingly.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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