One of the highlights of 6th Grade is our extended campus trip to the Kiyosato Educational Experiment Project (KEEP), which is coming up!
KEEP is located in Yamanashi Prefecture, about a 2.5 hour bus ride from school. We leave on Wednesday morning, October 3, for three adventurous, activity-filled days, before returning on Friday, October 5. The area is the home of high altitude dairy farming and is a developing recreational area.
October 3, students will arrive to ASIJ at the normal time. We will then depart, immediately after homeroom, by chartered bus to Kiyosato. Your child will need to bring a bag lunch for the first day, as we arrive at KEEP after lunch has been served (no nuts please!) Students should dress in clothing and shoes appropriate for hiking and outdoor activities because upon arrival at Kiyosato we will begin hiking. We hope that it will be sunny, but if it rains, our outdoor activities will proceed as planned, so rain gear is a must.
During our stay at KEEP, we are staying at Seisenryo. Some students will be housed in cabins (groups of 8-10 students and two teachers per cabin), while other students will share rooms in the main lodge (groups of 3-7 students per room). Teacher rooms in the main lodge will be dispersed among the student rooms. All bedding is provided. Meals are served in the main dining hall, which consists of Western and Japanese food. Students will be assigned rooms and roommates (3-10 each) by teachers and counselors. Students will discuss our core values of character, courage and compassion in advisory as they consider welcoming and collaborating with their roomates. Students will not learn of their roommates until they arrive at KEEP. This helps encourage an open minded sense of exploring new relationships - we find this results in greater kindness and compassion. One of the goals of this trip is to help students become both more independent and to form new friendships.
On October 5, we aim to return from KEEP in time for students to ride the 3:00pm buses. However, traffic conditions on the Chuo Highway occasionally prevent us from arriving on time, so we recommend that students be prepared to catch the late bus and to know how to return home from their late bus stop. On the way back to school, we will make a stop for lunch, when students will need to purchase on their own food--so please be sure they have lunch money for this meal (1,000 yen should be more than enough).
We have five guidelines we would like you to discuss with your child before the trip:
1. Do not bring food other than the sack/bag lunch. (Nut free, please as some students have severe allergies!)
2. There is no cell phone usage during the trip, nor any use of electronic games or devices (Kindles for reading are okay, but wireless features must be turned off). The rationale for this stems from our objective of providing students with an experience in the natural world. Taking a “technology time-out” is important. Calls from Tokyo and between cabins compromise this goal. Emergency contact information will be shared with parents prior to the trip; you and your child will be able to contact one another and camp leaders when needed. If students bring these devices, perhaps to aid them on the train to and from school, they will be held and returned at the conclusion of the trip back to ASIJ.
3. It is expected that students will show courtesy and respect for others at all times, especially in the dining hall where there will be other guests.
4. Students should bring no more than Y5000 for souvenirs, snacks, and lunch on the way home.
5. You can help your child have an enjoyable experience at KEEP by providing clothes that will help keep your 6th grader warm and dry. Please check the KEEP Packing List for suggested items to take on the trip.
If your child needs a special medical attention or have health concerns during the trip, please email to the Health Center. Mrs. Takigayama, our head nurse, will be with us. All families will receive a separate email with link to the ASIJ Middle School Activities/Trips Permission Form 2018-2019.
If you have questions please contact the MS office (Ex.600), or Maki Ushigome at email@example.com.
In case of emergency during the trip, you can contact Ms. Curtis who will be at KEEP: 07048002252 We look forward to having an enjoyable time at KEEP with your child.
The KEEP website can be found here and will continue to be updated as we approach the trip. The packing list (below), itinerary etc can be found at this site.
Pip Curtis, Middle School Principal
Maki Ushigome, KEEP Trip Coordinator
- Some T-shirts
- Warm nightwear/pajamas
- Socks (4/5 pairs)
- Comb / brush & toothbrush
- Towel (bath/wash)
- Tissue / Handkerchief
- Plastic bag for soiled clothes
- Sack lunch and drink for the first day
- Pencil / pen
- Reading books for evening activities
- Any medication taken on a regular basis (our nurse, will be with us.)
- Spending Money for souvenir and lunch on the way home (less than 5000 yen)
- Light jacket and/or sweatshirt (KEEP is at a high altitude and is cooler than Tokyo)
- Rain suit / rain gear
- 2 pairs of jeans or sturdy pants
- 2 pairs of comfortable tennis shoes (Hiking boots are not necessary)
- First aid (band aids, tape, something for scratches or insect bites)
- Light day pack
- Water bottle
- Hat /Cap (optional)
- Flashlight (optional)
- Sunglasses, sunscreen, lip balm (optional)