“Some Lessons our School Visits Have Taught Me” by Eri Uchida
Dec. 28, 2014
As I visit place to place on tour with the “School Workshop Performances,” I feel the importance of greetings firsthand. At one of the schools we visited recently, each student came up to us to greet us politely one by one.
In everything we do, communication is vital, which begins with a simple greeting that can convey so much.
At the schools we visit, teachers tell their students, “Look at the person speaking as you listen to them. Look into their eyes and listen carefully what they say.”
I think that children who can greet people well also have the ability to concentrate and know when to act in a certain way or when it’s ok to relax, according to different situations.
That goes for us, too.
I used to think that Japanese manners were very strict and a pain in the neck, but someone told me that “Manners are the best way to show how you feel.” Since then, Japanese manners became very natural to me and I started writing letters, too.
Children imitate the behavior of adults, even if they do not understand the meaning of that behavior at first. Later, they will learn the meaning behind it. I think adults should understand the real meaning behind our behavior and help children to understand that individually. As I think about this, I realize that we shouldn’t just explain things to children orally, but that they also need to experience what we mean firsthand for themselves.
Children grow up very quickly everyday and I hope that we can also grow as adults alongside them.