Teaching Japanese Kindergarten

By Donnie | Articles

My Japanese Kindergarten assistant teacher...Bunny Sensei

My Japanese Kindergarten assistant teacher…Bunny Sensei

Now that I’m pretty settled I sat back and realized just how busy the start of this year has been. I have moved twice in 60 Days?!? First it was Ouji, now it’s…well, I’ll tell later, keep reading:

I told that being away from my beloved writing hasn’t been because of my master ghost ninpou tactics, but because the start of this year has been a whirlwind. Even thought I recently moved to Tokyo in early January, I did things a bit backwards from the “traditional job” perspective. I moved, then ended having to hunt after the modeling dry spell. I had to find a full-time job because I needed to eat, pay bills, invest, all that good stuff.

A good friend friend reached out when I was struggling to find work and I ended up in a rather good position with a company called JIEC (thanks, Ben!). JIEC teaches primarily to Japanese kindergarten students and seems to be a great middle ground between eikaiwa and ALT work.

How is teaching kindergarten like ALT work?

I’m still quite new to this job, but so far, being at an actual Japanese kindergarten means that you will often be the only English speaker at a the school, which I felt was one of the benefits of ALT work. Some people do feel isolated by it at times, though.

Having exposure to Japanese on a daily basis is important if I’m going to keep my Japanese skills up to snuff or, dare I say, build on them.

Japanese kindergartens have special events, ceremonies, and customs just like Japanese elementary, middle, or high schools do. I will have the chance to watch and take part in some of these events as well.

How is JIEC like eikaiwa work?

With my current job situation, I don’t have the full summer breaks that I did as an ALT, but I’m not complaining, because the tradeoff is a much more comfortable salary. Over 500 USD a month more to be specific. With the time off I had as an ALT, I guess the problem I ran into was that I wasn’t earning enough to take any big trips, but I’m planning to change that this year.

So, Where did you move to?
When I interviewed I wanted to try to stay in Tokyo, but that wasn’t in the cards. One of the stipulations of securing my kindergarten teaching job was that I would have to move. I didn’t complain and did even make it an issue.

I was a little worried…EXTREMELY worried…of course about where I was going to end up, but I agreed to it because I wanted, no…NEEDED to work. I ended moving to Yokohama.

For the second time in about 60 days, I had to move again. I packed up my things got a cheap moving company to help me (we’ll talk about that, too) and now I’m here in Yokhama. I’m close to a JR line, not far from a 24-hour Gold’s Gym (WOO HOO) and close to everything I need.

On top of that, it’s also not so hard for me to get to Tokyo, if need be.

JIEC (the company I’m working for) was SUPER cool about helping to find a reasonable moving company and they even spotted me on the key money, which I will pay back over the course of my first twelve months of work. I’ll take!

My apartment is smaller & more expensive than the one I had in Tsukba or in Ouji, but at the same time it’s more modern, it’s cozier, and more convenient. I realize being in my own apartment trumps being in sharehouse, at least for me. It’s quieter, which means it’s easier for me to get back to making more Japan Guy vids, coming and going as I please, and having people over when I want (that hasn’t been happening a whole lot, though, unfortunately).

So now it’s time to see what cool things Yokohama has to offer. It really seems like it’s gonna be a cool place to live. I’m excited!

Donald Ash

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