Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Welcome back!

Welcome back! 

In this area of Japan, April means two things:
  • Cherry blossoms 
  • The beginning of a new school year. 

Many students who graduated from university last year have started working at a new job. Some high school students who graduated last year have now gone on to enter university. Also, those children who have turned 6 years old have begun attending their first year of public schooling. 

For many 1st graders, going to school means that they should walk to school either by themselves or in a group with other students. This custom of walking to school is so much the norm in Japan that many might assume that it's the same all around the world. 

However, this isn't always so, at least not in the United States. 

In the state of Maryland, parents of two children, ages 6 and 10, were allowing their children to walk home from school and also allowing their children to walk to the local park. Although neither of these places were very far away, maybe 2 or 3 kilometers, local police took the children to the police department because they thought the children were "unsafe". 

I think that this article is very interesting for me because it makes me think of what is the "right" age for children to be walking outside alone. 

What do you think? When are children old enough to walk around outside by themselves?   (Mike)