Japan Student life Travel

I was a camp captain in Japan

While I was at the middle of my student exchange in Tokyo, the international office sent me an email. It was from the English Summer Camp, looking for international students to be their next camp captains. A French teaching English? That sounds weird 🤔 but it did happen 😌

English Summer Camp (ESC)

Launched nearly 20 years ago, this organization offers programs to Japanese schools to teach English to their students. Summer camps last 3 days. Unlike some countries such as France where it is required to have a diploma to be a camp captain, these positions are opened to anyone and are paid ¥210 000 (about 170€). 

The selection 

As you could imagine, I wasn’t the only student who wanted to be part of the adventure. The job offer was sent to all the universities in Tokyo. So they had to proceed to a selection of the future captains. That’s why I had to introduce an International Culture Performance related to France, in front of a jury. I didn’t want to fall into the clichés and wanted to perform something that was part of my personality. I found out at the last minute what I was going to show…. Kuduro dance. 
Yes, I know that Kuduro is a dance from Angola and not France 😏.
So during the performance, I danced on Dança Kuduro from Lucenzo (who is Portugese by the way 😂 ). I linked everything to France by explaining to the jury that this song was a hit there and that a lot of people used to dance Kuduro on it. Guess what? They loved it and were even dancing with me at the end. That’s how I got my golden ticket 💃🏾.
© Imgflip.com
© Imgflip.com

During the camp

Day 1: meeting with the staff members and the others students from Brazil, Nigeria, Turkey, Egypt, Indonesia, Russia, Spain, Taiwan, Bangladesh, Ghana, Vietnam, Pakistan & Mongolia 🌍.
La dream team internationale ✌🏽
The international dream team✌🏽
Day 2: It’s the big day, I finally met the 5 schoolboys I was in charge of and to whom I had to teach how to dance Kuduro. 
I always have had easy contact with children except that in this case, it was teenagers aged from 13 to 14 years old. I had forgotten how complicated communication could be at this age 😅. I’m not going to lie, it wasn’t easy. In addition the the cultural barrier, I had to face the language one. At this moment, my Japanese abilities were limited, I could only introduce myself and order food 😂… From their sides, it was quite the same since they started learning English a year ago. So communication was a little complicated. Like we say, every challenge has its solution. Here it was sign languages. 
Who can show me where France is? 🤓
A snapshot from our rehearsal 💃🏾
I would love to share with you a video of the kids dancing Kuduro. Unfortunately I’m not allowed to show their faces. All I can say is that they nailed it 🙌🏽. We won an award 😎. So if you meet a Japanese dancing Kuduro, I don’t want to show off but I might have something to do with it 💁🏽.
Our crazy/wtf campfire during the last evening😂

A great experience

Despite being really tired from sleeping at 1AM and waking up at 5PM, this summer camp was a great experience. If I had to do it again, I wouldn’t hesitate. It brought me a lot from a cultural perspective but also personally. For instance, I learnt there the meaning of the word “itadakimasu”. That’s a Japanese expression said before each meal which means “thanks for this meal”. Unfortunately I didn’t’ learn it from the best way 😂. Once after wishing my students to enjoy their meals (in English) and quickly starting to eat my food, I noticed them staring at me with surprise 😅. Later on, one of them explained to me the reason why they acted like this: I did not say “itadakimasu”🙈. 
The performances from the other students were amazing. I felt like I was travelling around the world without moving 😎. It was also interesting to get a feedback from their experiences in Japan since we were all from different universities. 
As you you can see it, it was all fun 🤗
Even if it happened miles away, thanks to ESC, I was able to experience the life of camp captain. It would be possible in France since I don’t have the diploma for it. So thanks again ESC! 
This is the end of this post. I hope you like it. Feel free to like, comment and share it 😉!
Froholically, F.

(2) Comments

  1. Bachelor of Accounting Program Telkom University says:

    what do you feel after finishing your camp?

    1. Hi, simply grateful that I had the chance to experience something like this

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