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Sapporo Soka Kindergarten
February 5, 2019

Fun in the snow during the setsubun athletic competition


On Friday, February 1, the kindergarten held a setsubun (closing of winter) athletic competition outside in the snow at Nakayoshi Grounds.
When the children of the sun gathered at the grounds, the drums began to beat, and a "red demon" and a "blue demon" came to the kindergarten. These demons were the father and mother of "Nio-kun," who appears in the picture book Oni wa Uchi! ("Demons In!"). The demons said, "We would like to become friends with the children of the sun and to cheer you on during the competition." The children answered "OK!" and then the competition kicked off with children cheerfully dancing to Oni no Pants ("Demon's Pants") together with the demons.
Firstly, the four-year-old student classes took part in a "sled relay," and the three-year-old student classes enjoyed "Oni Oni Batting," in which the children threw the balls against the big bats that the demons brought. The five-year-old children then competed in a Tama-ire ("ball in the basket") game on the snowy grounds. As the children worked hard on each race, undaunted by the cold, the red demon and the blue demon gave the children "Beans fromOnigashima" as a gift.
Before closing out the competition, the principal said, "If you eat one bean, you'll be ‘strong.’ If you eat two, you'll be ‘righteous.’ If you eat three, you'll be ‘free.’ If you eat four, you'll be ‘gentle.’ If you eat five, you'll be ‘smart.’ Think about what you’d be when you eat six!"

After the athletic competition, the children returned to the classroom and ate as many beans as their age (provided by the demons). The children cheerfully spent a pleasant winter day.


Demons coming to Nakayoshi Grounds


Children dancing to Oni no Pants together with the demons


Sled relay


Children becoming friends with gentle demons


Tama-ire game on the snowy grounds