English Class Memorialized in Student Comics

Spring is a busy time in Japanese schools, a time of endings and beginnings. There are exams to be taken, graduates to be congratulated, yearbooks to be signed, teachers to be transferred, tears to be shed, new students to be welcomed, cherry blossoms to be viewed, and of course sake to be drank under said blossoms. But before we get too ahead of ourselves, it’s important to look back and remember the good times of the year that has passed. Which is what I had my students do in comic form when I asked them to draw comics about their memories from English class. Here are my top five (please excuse the alignment as I don’t have access to a proper scanner):

5. “Good Afternoon”

Awkward silence

This was a common occurrence in the beginning of class greetings for the first few months of the school year, and the student captured the moment perfectly. Apparently my name is particularly difficult for them to remember, and no one wanted to be the one student to shout out my name – wrong – so none of them did. (>_<)

4. “Expensive”

One greedy shopkeeper can ruin your whole day

Shopping was a popular lesson, as could be expected in an almost-all-girls senior high school. The half of the class that were shopkeepers got to set their own prices, and some of them took it to the extreme.

3. “Day Off”

This comic is pretty representative of what many students did in class - talk about what to do when they're not in class. More shopping!

This comic is pretty representative of what many students did in class – talk about what to do when they’re not in class. Which, naturally, involves more shopping!

2. “Something Sweet”

This comic killed me. I gave the students treats any time they filled up a sticker map (they got a sticker each time they volunteered in a class). This poor girl never told me she didn't like sweets until she told me through this comic at the end of the year.

This comic killed me. I gave the students treats any time they filled up a sticker map (they got a sticker each time they volunteered in a class). This poor girl never told me she didn’t like sweets until she told me through this comic at the end of the year.

1. “Valentine’s Mistake”

In Japan on Valentine's Day, girls give chocolates or homemade goodies to their friends, and occasionally to boys they like. At school they sometimes put the treats in each others' shoeboxes, and this girl apparently made a mistake. I'm not sure who to feel worse for, her or him! Definitely him...

In Japan on Valentine’s Day, girls give chocolates or homemade goodies to their friends, and occasionally to boys they like. At school they sometimes put the treats in each others’ shoeboxes, and this girl apparently made a mistake. I’m not sure who to feel worse for, her or him! No, actually I am, definitely him…

Just a small window into life at my Japanese high school. The school year’s pretty much done now, and soon I’ll be welcoming a whole new crop of eager and terrified first years into my English classes for a fresh set of memories.

I got a yearbook this year, since it’s the first year where the graduating students are actually students I taught in their (and my) first year. I was definitely more popular on yearbook-signing day here than I ever was as a high school student! It’s a good life.

They may not remember a single thing I taught them asides from my いけめん husband's name, but at least they love me.

They may not remember a single thing I taught them two years ago asides from my いけめん husband’s name, but at least they still love me.

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3 thoughts on “English Class Memorialized in Student Comics

    • They are hilarious. If I were as talented as them, I would have a whole pile of comics to write about their antics from this past year. Alas, illustration is not my forte (>_<)

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