Last May, the Irish Dance Club received an invitation from the Director of the National Catholic Awareness Conference, Japan to perform at the Nicholas Barre Center in Yotsuya, Tokyo during the event, “In Preparation for Pope Francis’s Visit to Japan, Catholic Awareness Conference of Japan – 2019”.
Eleven students, from the Elementary and Middle School and six from Ardagh School of Irish Dance had a successful performance on November 2nd. Students arrived early afternoon; with the help of the parents to dress up and once the dancers warmed up, they were ready for the presentation. Although students had only a couple of months to prepare their steps and for the younger ones being their first public performance, the Irish Dance was a success.
Middle School students said “We thought performing at the church was a wonderful experience because of the culture we got to learn from practicing the Irish dance. The comments we received from the audience members were very encouraging. Overall we enjoyed performing very much and we feel very lucky to represent Saint Maur.”
The Irish Dance Club Parent Coordinator and Gr. 3 parent mentioned “The dancers received great applause and the audience seemed very surprised to watch their skillful steps. The host said he was greatly impressed by the performance and would like to invite us next year too.”
“I thought the performance went very well. A little hectic but with the kids that is to be expected. I also felt the audience really got into it with all the hand clapping for encouragement. It was a very lovely performance.” commented another Irish Dance Club Parent Coordinator and Gr. 4 parent.
“The small children’s first performance, though Tomoko Sensei was a little worried at the beginning, remembered the steps and danced well. The more experienced students presented an exciting dance with their multiple steps in hard shoes. It was the real Irish Dance performance the younger students and audience were able to experience.” impressions of a Gr. 5 parent.
Shirasawa Sensei mentioned the students danced very well and was very proud of each and everyone. Being invited to such and important event outside Saint Maur was an honor.
Ms. Tomoko Shirasawa, instructor of the Saint Maur Irish Dance Club and Head of the Ardagh School of Irish Dance, based in Tokyo, teaches the students once a week after school. Ms. Shirasawa is registered in the Irish Dance Commission in Ireland and our club members have been fortunate to receive instructions from Ms. Shirasawa. Through her involvement with the Saint Maur Irish Dance Club, Ms. Shirasawa has enabled Saint Maur to expand from a rogue Irish Dance Club to a proper performing and competitive Irish Dance Community.
Our school congratulates and appreciates the students, parents and Shirakawa Sensei for their interest and commitment to share the culture of Irish Dance. We also thank the Director of the National Catholic Awareness Conference for the gracious invitation.
We have now filled all the 55 places given to the School for the Papal Mass on November 25th at Tokyo Dome. All students who applied have received letters home with permission slips to return. It is essential that each student has their Saint Maur ID Card with them on the day. If they have misplaced their card they must see Ms Maki in the office as soon as possible. Students will be in full uniform, but the School hoodie may not be worn. They can carry water up to 500ml. There are no lockers, so only small hand carried bags are allowed - think of airport security! Any questions please come see me in the chapel any morning or by email to email@example.com.
It's going to be a day of great historical significance for Japan. What the Holy Father says will be very important for our society and world.
The Yokohama College Fair has been hosted by Saint Maur every year in November since 2006. Japanese universities which offer four-year undergraduate degree programs, taught in English with September entry, are invited to meet with students, parents, teachers, and counselors from international schools and IB Diploma Program schools in Kanagawa, Shizuoka, and Tokyo. This year 23 universities, ranging from Kyushu to Hokkaido, sent admissions staff and professors to meet with over 150 students from Saint Maur and 17 other schools in the Kanto area. This is the only college fair in Japan which focuses purely on Japanese universities. The result has been successful entry into challenging academic programs at universities in Japan for graduates of Saint Maur and other schools.
What a wonderful assembly on November 1st led by the 2S students, showcasing their talents and teaching us why it's important to be lifelong learners. There were a wide range of talents portrayed, such as playing the piano, dancing, magic tricks, basketball moves in addition to videos of students' wall climbing, swimming lessons and much more. The audience was asked what defines a lifelong learner and everyone agreed: enjoying learning skills for life.
The Saint Maur Elementary School students had a blast on Halloween morning, with the Elementary School Student Council hosting spooky games! Every grade was represented by a brave volunteer on stage that had to compete in blindfolded spider searches, sticky ping pong challenges and more! At the end, there was a final cookie challenge and the Student Council awarded each class with money for their class funds.
Show times are 7 pm on Friday, November 29th and 1 pm and 5 pm on Saturday, November 30th. Get your tickets now!
The annual Mass for the dead will take place on Friday 8th November at 3.40 in the Chapel of the Infant Jesus. If you would like the names of any of your oved ones included in our Book of Rememberance please send them to Mr. Brendan Agnew, Head of Religious Studies.
There wil be an hour of prayer before the Blessed Sacrament on Wednesday 30th October from 8.30 - 9.30 in the Chapel of the Infant Jesus. This is a good opportunity to make a spiritual preparation for the visit of Pope Francis to Japan in Novemeber. All are welcome to come for part of this time to spend some time in silence and meditation.
Grade 8 students have designed a poster introducing the cleaning staff to the Saint Maur community. The poster displays each person's hobbies and interests in Japanese and English. This project was part of their Japanese lessons - thank you very much to Mrs. Nakashima for this wonderful idea!
After a long day of answering many questions at the High School KPASS Brain Bowl Tournament on Thursday, 10th of October, the Saint Maur International School Brain Bowl Team are happy to report that the team scored 425 points in total and placed SECOND after Saint Mary's International School, who scored only 20 points more. Congratulation the participating students on their success!