Sports Day, held on May 25, 2019, provided the children with an opportunity to get outdoors, experience teamwork, compete and exercise. We had the event at our neighbouring Shinagawa Etoile Girl’s School which is only a 3 minutes brisk walk away from Aomono-Yokocho station. The location was big enough to accommodate our students, parents and staff and to do our sporting events. In the past, we have had a combined Sports Day with our Japanese Exchange School. Since we moved locations, we went solo.
This year, we mixed some traditional Japanese elements like the radio warm-up with western ways. Logistically, we compacted the whole event in the cool morning from 9:00 to 11:30. I won’t expound on the entire schedule but accentuate some of the more interesting and newer areas.
We had a bottle flipping relay and it was what the children call (pardon the slang) “Dude Perfect.” Here, a partially filled bottle with water is flipped in the air and it needed to land upright. After 7 such bottles, the children needed to flip cones. A dramatic finish made the event thrilling.
Along with the traditional big ball rolling, obstacle course, and running for toys, we had a hula hoop chain relay. The children stood in a line linked by holding hands. A hula hoop was moved from one person to the next without using their hands. This game reminded of the Hanayama Japanese ring puzzles. It must have been a real mind-bending intelligence activity for the children! Like the Paralympics, we had a visually impaired event.
The children were blindfolded and needed to pick up small cones in an enclosed area. As a finale, there was an over and under the wet sponge event! Children filled up a bucket by squeezing out water from a sponge! When all was said and done the red team got the most points over the whites with 240 to 204. A trophy was handed to the team captains, photos were taken and we went our merry ways to enjoy the beautiful day for the second time!
I think for me as a parent and administrator, it is always fun to see the intense looks of concentration and intensity on little faces. In the end, smiles prevail!
I would like to thank the parents, teachers (especially our PE teacher), students and Shinagawa Etoile for helping to make this a grand event!