Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Bishi Bashi

Today I had 4 classes. Normally I keep it under three because my throat starts to kill me after the third class. But because this school is smaller than my other one I teach more. I have less time at this school so I figure that I should visit the classes more often.

Anyway, today I taught with a very strict teacher whom I appreciate. Let's call her BishiBashi-sensei. Now, you may be wondering what "bishi bashi" actually is. I actually learned this term from bishibashi-sensei. She demonstrated it in the class and asked me to participate in the bishi bashi bash!
Basically bishi bashi is the act of "roughing up" students who are naughty. By roughing up, I mean slapping, pushing, jiggling and wiggling. None of it is done to hurt the kids. It's more like a quick reminder for them to act better and not be naughty. The first time I saw bishibashi-sensei break out with the ninja smack down I was shocked. My jaw dropped and I couldn't believe what I was seeing. It looked so much like corporal punishment to me. She was smacking them on the back, on the chest, on the head, on the arms and so on. She'd go off on a tirade yelling at a boy, jerk this poor boy up and wiggle him like a rag doll.

I personally don't get involved in the bishi bashi but occasionally she asks me to join in. I usually just laugh but one or two times she sort of forced me into the tag team bishi bashi. I never take it as far as she does because I don't feel it is appropriate. But I can say this, when her students graduate they are some of the top kids. Bishibashi-sensei keeps them engaged, prevents them from being lazy, makes sure that every student does their homework, does well on tests and is an overall positive influence on them.

Today Bishibashi-sensei put the bishi bashi bounce on a couple of kids. She especially targets the boys that represent the naughtiest of the naughty. She goes after any boy who doesn't do his homework, talks in class, doesn't sit up straight and doesn't act appropriate. She's like shark chomping down on a seal carcass. It's a site to see.

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