Preparing for Japanese Elementary School (Shogakko)

Japanese Elementary School begins in April. Are you prepared? Or will your child attend in the coming years? We`ve listed what you need to know, information schedules and a general school supplies list to help you prepare.

What you need to know:

*Elementary School Selection Procedure for Meguro Ward. Please contact your ward office as procedures may vary:
October 7: Receive Elementary School Application schedule from your local Ward office.
October 8 ~ October 27: School Application Period.
November 4: Zone school change form distributed.
November 4 ~ November 17: Application Period for `out of zone` School
November 24: Notification of School Change Lottery
December 1: Public Lottery
December 2: Lottery Results
January 13: School Enrollment List Distributed. Mail-in part of the form to confirm your enrollment and keep the remaining form for the entrance ceremony.
February: Elementary School Entrance Ceremony Meeting; overview of school information, supplies, and date of school start.
April: School Entrance Ceremony and School Start


Elementary School Viewing and Information Session Schedule:

– Visit local elementary schools in May during their Sports Days or call to schedule a visit. Some schools have “open school” viewing days. Call your local elementary school for their viewing days.
– June: Elementary School Lecture and School Viewing
– September: Elementary School Information Sessions
– October: Setsumeikai (Briefing Session) and Tour
– November Health Check (Teeth, ENT (ear, nose & throat), chest (breathing) and vision)    ** Take your child`s immunization records, indoor shoes and shoe bag for parent & child. Child should wear a comfortable top to easily remove for check up.
– February: School Briefing. Parents are given papers to fill in and a list of supplies to purchase.
**Open a JAPAN POST Bank Account. This is used for school fees (textbook, lunch, etc). It`s a simple procedure and should take less than 45 minutes.

SCHOOL SUPPLIES to purchase and label: (others will be provided at the school e.g. supplies box, renrakucho (contact book), clay, crayons, etc):
Randoseru (elementary school back pack)
– Indoor Shoes & Shoe Bag
– Gym Uniform and bag
Graphite Pencils (B or 2B) – Five Black and One Red
Pencil case
– Plastic Board sheet to write on
– Scissors
– Glue
– Ruler
– Blank Notebook
Earthquake Hood and chair cover
– 2 Lesson Bags (A4 size)
Lunch Mat
– Toothbrush
– Cup
Small Towel
– Bag to hold lunch items
Handkerchief
– Pocket Tissues

** We recommend purchasing a Name Stamp Set to label all school items.

General Elementary School HOLIDAY SCHEDULE (Please consult your public school as dates may vary):
Summer: July 23 ~ August 24
Winter: December 26 ~ January 7
Spring: March 25 ~ April 5

SCHOOL START TIME: Generally between 8:05 ~ 8:25am

P.S. Visit our Educating your Children in the Japanese School System posts

Required Japanese Elementary School Items (Shogakko)

Surviving Japanese Elementary School (Shogakko)

Tokyo English Classes for Multi Cultural Kids

Take-Aways – Educating Your Child in a Non-Native Language

Japan Parenting Groups and Resources

Japanese Kindergarten Application and Interview Process

Required Japanese Kindergarten Items (Yochien)

Surviving Japanese Kindergarten (Yochien)

Guide to Making Obento – Supplies, Tips and Where to Purchase

Guide to Navigating the Hoikuen System – Application Process and Tips

Preparing for Japanese Elementary School (Shogakko)

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