Today was rehearsal for our guest appearance at the Children’s Day festival being hosted at NUAS. There were six countries being represented; England, France, Nigeria, Russia, China, and America for the kids. The entire gymnasium had been decorated by the NUAS student volunteers and the staff at the Children’s Care center. They divided the room into five parts with Europe (England, Russia, France, and Nigeria) on one wall, America on the opposite, China at the back wall, a middle station for flag making, and the entrance desk just past the doors. Each child got a little passport as they entered and after the presentation they would go to each country and receive a stamp after they played a game there.
Each country had at least one person representing them and for our presentation we where to show a game or song from that country. So from France we played a game un, duex, trois, soleil (one , two, three, sun), that was like red light green light except with numbers. We played with the volunteers. It was funny because all of the foreigners would run and get out quickly. But the Japanese students just sort of shuffled forward until someone made it. Nigeria had a song (can’t remember the name of it), China’s game was a chicken protection game, and Russia had a cat and mouse game. England joined forces with America and we were supposed to do patty cake.
Practice took about three hours and then we all just went home. At about 7pm Kim came over to my room and we ended up practicing patty cake over and over again and trying to remember our lines (we had to say a short little speech about America in Japanese) for the next day.
I never realized how hard patty cake was as a child. It was so ridiculous. Loren (the British rep.) was saying the words over the mike and then Kim and I were one pair doing it, while Markeith and Keith were the other. At first Loren started out too fast, and off rhythm (she had never actually heard or done patty cake before). Then the second time we just messed up. In the end we just laughed along with the audience. Andre`s French game went well and this time the kids actually ran. The Chinese game was basically that one person was the Robin (it might have been another type of bird) and one person is the Chicken and everyone else are the chicks. The chicks all line up behind the chicken and then the robin tries to get past the chicken to snag a chick. It was a lot of fun but dangerous on the slick wood floors. The Russian cat and mouse game was a little confusing. There are a certain number of mice and cats (marked by a little tail) and then everyone else is in a circle. The mice are inside the circle and the cats are outside. The cats try to catch the mice and the mice try to steal the cat’s tails. Cats are not allowed inside the circle. All of the foreigners and a couple of the volunteers were the cats and the kids were all mice. I was thinking that it would be ok. No. Two seconds into the game my tail is gone and I have no idea what to do. And they were like “Go! catch the mice!” And I went to go do so, but then I saw about seven or eight kids in a group and I got scared and I just started running from them. It was a bit scary. All in all it was lots of fun. Then we went to go and man the stations for the next couple of hours while the kids played. I was so tired by the end of it.