“Wasuremono ga oi.” I’ve heard this from both of my children’s teachers over and over again for the past four years, speaking not only about my kids, but their classmates as well. “They forget to bring many things.” Although, supposedly, the children are supposed to prepare their stuff for school themselves, thus developing independence, there is no way that mine can remember everything without my reminding them, and I can’t remember everything because, well, I’m over forty.
Here’s what my daughter was supposed to remember to bring one day this week:
handkerchief (for drying her hands after she washes them)
five regular pencils, sharpened
rounded ruler (what is that called?)
Japanese textbook and notebook
social studies textbook
finished homework (three pages)
renrakucho (notebook for writing down the day’s schedule, etc.)
notebook for parent/teacher communiques
zippered bag for memos, etc.
100 grams of salt
30cm x30 cm piece of aluminum foil
Here’s what she forgot: the aluminum foil, which I prepared for her, but which she uncharacteristically forgot to put in her bag.
Here’s what my son was supposed to remember to bring to school today:
various textbooks and notebooks, pencils, eraser, ruler, etc. as above
Yesterday he forgot his hat.
The teachers always say that forgetting things now bodes ill for the future. I’m not sure what will happen if they don’t remember everything every day, but I do know many Japanese adults who have forgotten things. I’m not convinced that training them not to forget twenty things a day actually insures that they will not forget things as an adult.
Tonight there is a fourth grade PTA meeting. I’m willing to bet money that the teacher will say, “Wasuremono ga oi.”