POP-UP Festival at Three Nursery schools in Atsumi-area Tsuruoka-city Yamagata-prefecture Japan

The three nursery schools operated by “Atsumi Fukushi Kai” social welfare corporation are working on Social Emotional Learning starting in 2019. This year, we participated in the POP-UP Festival with the support of Tomohiro Mitsumori Six Seconds certified EQ Advanced Facilitator.

We played Outdoor Nature Game for Children. This activity is a game of bingo in which you explore nature, looking for “brown things” and “slippery things” in nature, for example. Children checked acorns and leaves they had collected through the Nature Game with each other.

They reflected on the activity, identified their emotions, and chose the card from the five emotion cards. Teacher carefully listens to the emotions spoken by each child and writes them on an emotion card. Each child puts his or her card on the poster of the “Wanpaku Forest” in a place of his or her choice. They proudly put their emotion card and identify each other’s feelings with Classmates.


*Wanpaku : play hart, enjoy oneself to the full, have a great time

Daily “EQ check-in”

Children do EQ check-in every morning at three nursery schools. EQ Check-in is an activity for children to face their feelings, express their feelings in their own words, and learn about the feelings of others. The activity is customized by the nursery staff to growth and characteristics of each child in each nursery.

As you can see from the photos, not all children are cheerful and bright when they arrive at the nursery school. Some children feel sad after being scolded by their mothers, while others are angry after a fight with their brother or sister. In many places (classroom, office), we tend to think of happy, joyful, and cheerful feelings as a good thing, but our feelings change from time to time during the course of a day. Being able to recognize changes in your feelings is the first step toward being able to regulate your own feelings.
Children are able to calm themselves down and talk to their teachers and classmates about why they are sad by taking a few moments to cry when they are sad!

When feelings change during the day, children move the cards and flags to the appropriate emotion by themselves. In this way, children ability to deal with enhancing emotional literacy throughout the day is increasing every day.


Application to daily childcare

Three nursery schools engage in Social Emotional Learning throughout the day. At Atsumi Nursery School, children observe the snails they are raising every day. Through the accumulation of experiences of self-awareness, children have discovered that snails change the color of their excrement depending on the color of vegetables and other food they eat, and where they defecate from. This is the foundation for inquiry learning and leads to deep learning and advanced knowledge acquisition. This is the result of the practice of SixSedonds Learning philosophy “Wisdom Lives Within.”
Yamato and Nezugaseki nursery schools use emotion cards to share reflections on children walking programs, such as the Yamairagawa-Tamasugi expedition and the Nezugaseki expedition.

Reference (about POP-UP Festival)

POP-UP Festival for World Children’s Day