Last Saturday was the last day of my Japanese language school for the 2014/15 school year. It has been 8 years since I started teaching Japanese to children. Every year the students in my class are different and each class is unique. Over the year I get to know my class by communicating, studying together, playing games, and doing activities, and by the end we have formed a bond. On the last day I had mixed feelings, because I was happy to finish another year and to send the students off to the next level class but I was sad to say good bye and not see them in my class anymore. But I know that the next year holds new students and a different teaching adventure.
Each year students have given me very special gifts; handmade thank you cards, paper cranes, animals made with origami paper, drawings, handmade stuffed animals, etc. I love to see their short, handwritten messages in the Japanese I taught. I love to see pretty drawings with their names in Japanese characters. Those are very special gifts from my students that I keep in a box. But most of all, I love to hear how much they enjoyed my class and that they look forward to coming back to school next year. I am fortunate to be able to receive these priceless gifts from my students.