Tag Archives: School

A School Closing in Japan

What is the importance of a school? To small communities like the ones in rural Japan a school can be the very heart. In a land where the PTA has a far more visual and important role, the school acts as a focal point for community events and networking among parents, local government, and even the large population of elderly people not comprising many rural areas in Japan. The past two weeks marked a transition in Japan, with the financial

School Lunch in Okinawa October 22-31

Monday October 22 Milk, autumn rice, baked mackerel, cabbage and sesame salad, root vegetable soup Monday’s meal highlights one of the major strengths of Japanese cuisine: seasonal ingredients.  The rice was infused with flavors and vegetables that are ripe in autumn.  Along side the rice was a salad of cabbage, cucumber and other vegetables in sesame dressing, a clear broth soup with root vegetables, and a slice of baked mackerel. Tuesday October 23 Milk, Chinese rice bowl, wakame (seaweed) soup, orange This

School Lunch in Japan for Sept 10-28

Things have been interesting around here for the last few weeks.  My novel is out, we got hit with typhoon 1216 and 1217 and there was a sports festival thrown in.  Why does any of this matter in a School Lunch post?  Well in Japan, or at least on my island, all of this tends to mess with 1. my ability to get a school lunch,  2. My ability to remember to take pictures of them, and 3. My ability to actually

Tsunami Drills at School in Japan

Growing up, I remember seeing the red bells along school halls, and wondering when they would ring to let us outside for a bit.  Fire Drills were a common enough event, but in Arizona there is little fear of earthquake, tornado, or other natural disaster.  I didn’t experience my first quake until I came to Japan and was working out in my garden.  There was a noise like a big truck driving by, windows shook, and the ground moved a

The Last School Lunch Before Summer

This is it.  The last week of school lunches before students go to summer break and I go back to eating convenience store bentos (lunch boxes) for the next month.  I’m going to miss the variety and relative healthiness (and standardized portions) of school food.  Since students aren’t in school, I’ll be working at my local Board of Education.  Most other teachers will alternate summer vacation days with work at school.  When they’re in town they’ll likely alternate between bentos, going out

School Lunch in Okinawa for July 9-13

Monday July 9 Milk, wakame rice, shredded vegetable stir fry, skewered meatballs, and mozuku miso soup, miso cookie Today’s meal had a variety of sea plants featured in the cooking.  In the rice, shredded wakame, a type of seaweed, gave a little extra flavor to the usual white rice.  In the soup, another common local seaweed, mozuku, complimented the rich miso flavors.  The stir fry  had a multitude of vegetables, including dried daikon (white radish) and konnyaku (a jelly made

2012 Tanabata at School

July 7th is Tanabata in Japan.  It marks the day when two stars are at their closest, yet never meet.  From the astronomical phenomena, stories and tales have developed around the pair, telling that they are lovers ever divided. While there is no official holiday, Tanabata is a fun day that many groups take advantage of for bbq and other get togethers. Most school staffs usually plan a Tanabata party of some kind or another to mark the event. As

School Lunch in Okinawa Japan for July 2-6

Monday July 2 Milk, barley rice, mozuku stuffed fried egg, daikon bushii, orange Monday’s meal was on the far side of tasty, but for me it wasn’t much of a surprise since daikon was featured so heavily in the bushii.  Stewed daikon (giant white radish) isn’t something you’ll find a whole lot in the West, but its got such a unique mild flavor to it.  The bushii is essentially a light stew of pork, daikon, and other root vegetables that

School Lunch in Japan for June 26-29

Tuesday June 26 Milk, barley rice, goya chanpuru, fried fish, clear soup Thanks to last week’s Dragon Boat Festival, there was no school for my junior highs on Monday.  We started off the shortened week with an Okinawan meal of fried banana fish and goya chanpuru.  The fish was covered in a light tempura batter and fried, followed up with a clear soup of komatsuna. Wednesday June 27 Milk, barley rice, shrimp and vegetable dumplings, vegetable and oyster stir fry,

School Lunch in Japan for June 18-22

Monday June 18 Milk, millet rice, minced meat stuffed inari, stir fry vegetables, kenchin soup, apple  This lunch was a somewhat strange mix of flavors.  Inari is a soybean product similar to tofu.  They are little pockets made from bean curd in a slightly sweet sauce.  Usually they are stuffed with sushi rice and served cold.  This version paired the same slightly sweet inari flavor with meat, which was strange for me but quite edible.  The rest of the meal

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