Return to
Japan With Kids Home Page

Forum Main Page
Keyword Search
New Posts
Last Week

Getting Started
Register Here
Edit Profile
Contact Admin

For Admins
Forum Software

Homeschooling / Afterschooling in Japan

Japan With Kids - Forums: Education in Japan: Homeschooling / Afterschooling in Japan
By Sam Rystrom on Wednesday, September 1, 1999 - 2:57 am:

My name is Sam Rystrom and I have designed a nice supplementary science course.
I am not a spam mailer but rather a hardworking horticulturist from the midwest. I am asking if you would check out the course materials at and any input or comments would be most beneficial. I think I have designed a super course and I just want to make it known.

How would I go about introducing my course to elementary schools in Japan? I am interested to know if there is a need for this type of material and if the price is in the ballpark.
Thank you for your time.

Sincerely, Sam Rystrom

By Aileen on Wednesday, September 22, 1999 - 9:17 am:

Many of us need to homeschool or "afterschool" because we come from crosscultural families or are foreigners who want our kids to be bilingual. Homeschooling is a difficult enough task, and being foreigners in Japan means there are unique challenges and issues. A small group of families from all over Japan have started a newsletter/newsloop to pool ideas, experiences, educational resources (where to get curriculum, good books, etc) and even make good friends. The newsletter is welcome to anyone but the discussions will often bear pro-Christian views. If you wish to become a part of the loop, please email me with a brief introduction about yourself, your family and major educational concerns, and I will send the newsletter.

Aileen Kawagoe

By kat on Tuesday, November 2, 1999 - 12:11 pm:

Homeschooling in Japan - A network of homeschooling and afterschooling families in Japan. Whether you
homeschool full time or supplement your children's education after school, please stop by to network with other families and share resources.
We will organize an outing around Tokyo once a month.

By Kat on Saturday, May 13, 2000 - 6:15 am:

Fieldtrip- 25 May - 12:30
I'd like to invite all of you to the outing Homeschooling in Japan has planned for May.

We will visit the Coca-Cola factory in Higashi Kurume on Thursday, May 25. We'll get a behind the scenes look at how the sweet bubbly stuff gets put together. If the weather is nice the children can play at a nearby park after the tour.

Meet at the south exit of Kiyose station on the Seibu-Ikebukuro line at 12:30. The tour lasts 50 minutes and will be conducted in Japanese. email:
if you plan to come.

Call 070-6649-4656 on the day of the event if you are lost, running late or need to cancel. Come out and meet other homeschooling families!

thanks to Ida Sekiya for the idea!

Homeschooling in Japan

By Kat on Thursday, October 12, 2000 - 7:22 am:

October 13, Friday, at 10:30 a.m. - Homeschoolers' Visit to Yokohama Museum of Art

Calling all homeschoolers! Some homeschool families are planning to go to the Chinese Civilization Exhibition at Yokohama Museum of Art on October 13, Friday, at 10:30 a.m. The museum is near Sakuragicho station on the JR and Tokyu Toyoko lines. Please contact me at if interested in joining.

One who has been to the exhibit wrote the following about other things to do around there. If some of you (like me) will be bringing youngsters not quite ready for ancient civilization exhibits, we could "play" outside while the older kids and parents take in the exhibit:

>>There are a few things around the Yokohama Museum of Art. The pavilion outside includes a fountain, a few benches, and a few trees as best I recall. However, just across a pedestrian bridge there is the large Landmark Tower and adjacent Queens shopping areas. There is a Starbucks at the bottom of the Landmark Tower shopping area, and a Yurindo with a limited selection of English language books on the fifth floor. In addition, there is a (horrendously expensive, IMHO) elevator ride up to an observation floor. I can't remember how high up it is, maybe 80 floors or something like that? Anyway, on a clear day, you can see quite a long ways off in four directions. Finally, some of the kids might be interested in the Yokohama Maritime Museum which has the Nippon Maru sailing ship in the harbor next to it. The ticket includes a tour of the ship as well as the museum. The ship is really interesting. The museum houses a large collection of model ships and a couple of activities for kids. It might be possible, or even preferable, for some of us to herd some of the younger set that way. The Chinese exhibit is really great, but I'm not sure all of them will think so.

Maybe you've heard about the Four Great Civilizations on exhibit in Tokyo and Yokohama. Organized by NHK, these studies of ancient civilizations include The Indus Civilization at Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum, The Egyptian Civilization at the Toyo National Art Museum (both in Ueno Park), and The Mesopotamian Civilization at the Setagaya Art Museum, a 20 minute walk from Yoga Station on the Tokyu Denentoshi Line. The charge is 4,000 yen for the set or 1,300 for each exhibit (student prices available).

best wishes, Kat

Katherine Combs
Homeschooling in Japan

By Kat Combs on Thursday, December 14, 2000 - 1:02 pm:

There's always a lot happening this time of year, but hopefully you can squeeze in a trip to Minka-en in Kawasaki on December 14 with other homeschoolers.

Friends tell me this is a worthwhile visit and not very far from Shinjuku on the Okakyu line. Apparently it's adjacent to a very nice park withhiking trails! We'll be meeting at the south exit of Mukogaoka-Yuen station (Odakyu line) at 10:30 on Thursday, December 14th. As always, please let me know if you plan to go so we won't miss you. I'll be happy to send more explicit instructions by email.

Take care and Merry Christmas!

Katherine Combs
Homeschooling in Japan

By Catherine Berkley on Friday, May 18, 2001 - 1:56 am:

What are the criteria for expats who wish to home school their children while living in Japan? Do you need to be enrolled in a Japanese certified program (or a US certified program)? Does the homeschool instructor need to be certified in any way? What types of extracurricular activities do you include in your curriculum (besides field trips)? I would appreciate it if someone might share the basics with me -- I work with expats in Japan and this is a new topic for us. Thanks!

By M. Stock on Thursday, May 24, 2001 - 8:45 pm:

An excellent resource for homeschooling in Japan is Aileen Kawagoe's online Homeschooling/Afterschooling in Japan Newsletter.
Website address is

By Aileen Kawagoe on Monday, November 19, 2001 - 9:59 am:

Just a note to update everyone on the removal of our website to a new address: The Homeschooling in Japan website's new online home is at

Aileen Kawagoe

By Hillary Michaels on Thursday, March 21, 2002 - 9:14 am:

Sunday, the 24th, there is horsebackriding for a 1000 yen (or less -- I forget which is the charge for a lesson, and which is a basic charge -- for 10 minutes but they actually go longer, a petting zoo, kids crafts and other good things held by a volunteer group by the banks of the Tamagawa river near my station. Not a BIG event, but fun. This is also a great place for flying kites or any openair sport. (Izumi Tamagawa station on the Odakyu line). The activities are from 10 to 2. I'm going to meet people at the ticket gate of Izumitamagawa station at 10 oclock. After the activities, we can go hiking in the wilds about a 10 minute walk away along the river bank -- yes, in Tokyo, and probably see egrets. I'll show people how to identify wild salad greens. There is a massive sand bank, and oodles of brushy places to explore as well as the river to throw rocks into. Quite a few duck couples at the moment. Looks like something out of Wuthering Heights. Lots of little paths through tall growth. Log (really stick) bridges across streams. I could go on forever -- I LOVE this place. Moms and dads might want to do some shopping for veggies while you are here. We are in a farming region and prices are low, especially on Sundays.

My phone number is 03-5761-1781. mobile: 090-6045-7629. (Allow 30 minutes if you are coming through Shinjuku. It can take less, but it depends on the whims of connecting trains. (EXPRESS to local. Change at Seijogakuenmae station.)

Hillary Michaels
mother of Chinami (age 9)

By Cornelia on Saturday, May 18, 2002 - 9:12 am:

There is a web site for free materials from the US government. There is a lot of interesting stuff (and some not so interesting to everyone). It is geared towards teachers, librarians, etc. I think that would include anyone involved in education.

By Cornelia on Monday, February 16, 2004 - 9:11 am:

Two open-air museums with whole houses, farmhouses, stores, etc. near or in Tokyo. The Minka-en museum was the destination of one of the home-schooling field trips posted above. Both museums require a walk or a bus or a taxi from the train station. We did the Edo-Tokyo Open Air Museum yesterday, had great weather, and a lovely time. There were a lot of activities taking place on the museum grounds (maybe they do this only one weekends), so my daughter was happy.

Edo-Tokyo Open Air Architectural Museum
Now a branch of the Edo-Tokyo Museum, this is a collection of structures chronicalling Edo's past. Included are a few farmhouses (one which housed 10 generations!) and a number of buildings from early 1900s that survived the Great Earthquake and the war such as a soy-sauce shop, a bar, a bathhouse, a tailor, a cosmetics maker, and finally a couple of modern homes from before WWII.
Musashi Koganei station (JR Chuo line). 3-7-1 Sakura-cho, Koganei City. Tel: 042-388-3300. Tue-Sun 9:30am-4:30pm. Adm: Adults 400, students and seniors 200, children free.
Go to Musashi Koganei station on the JR Chuo Line.
By Seibu bus: board at Bay 2 or 3 at Musashi Koganei Station, North Exit; traffic light at "Koganei Koen Nishi-Guchi" bus-stop; 5 minutes on foot
By Kanto bus: board bus bound for Mitaka Station at Bay 4 at Musashi Koganei Station, North Exit; traffic light at "Edo-Tokyo Tatemono-En Mae" bus-stop; 3 minutes on foot
Or go to Hana Koganei Station on the Seibu Shinjuku Line
By Seibu bus: Take bus bound for Musashi Koganei Station from "Hana Koganei Eki Iriguchi" bus-stop: traffic light at "Koganei Koen Nishi-Guchi" bus-stop. 5 minutes by bus from Hana Koganei Station.

Japan Open-Air Folk House Museum (Nihon Minka-en)
Walk through thatched roof farmhouses, Western influenced merchant houses, and other dwellings removed from rural Japan and re-built in the suburbs of Kawasaki.
Mukogaoka Yuen station (Odakyu line). 7-1-1 Masugata, Tama-ku, Kawasaki City. Tel: 044-922-2181. Tue-Sun 9:30am-4pm. Adm: Adults 500, students 300, children and seniors free.
There's a small map you can see in English from
Take Odakyu/Odawara line from Shinjuku. The express train takes 21 minutes to Mukogaoka-Yuen station.

To figure out your train route, use one of the web based train planners! You can find suggestions for these under the conversation topic "Trains" (use the keyword search).

By LaNi Weaver on Thursday, April 29, 2004 - 7:30 am:

I'm on my way to Japan with my 14 year old son. I don't think that I can afford international school and I know that he won't gain entrance to a Japanese high school, thus, I will be looking at homeschooling. Brigham Young University has an accredited homeschooling program for 9-12 grade. I'm concerned that my son may get bored during the day when I'm working. Any suggestions on activities or homeschooling groups that he might join for some day time activities? Any help would be appreciated.

By Jill on Saturday, May 8, 2004 - 6:39 pm:

Sorry to be slow replying LaNi. I am homeschooling my 12 year old son here and there are a few others. I would recommend checking out the homeschooling in Japan website, as there is a lot of information there. Most children of expats are in the International schools so it is more difficult to find activities and friends who are available in the day time. Please email me directly and I can give you more information.

By Admin on Tuesday, February 8, 2005 - 9:21 am:

2005 February 27: Home Education Symposium organized by Tokyo Shure
To: Cornelia Kurz
Thank you for your inquiry. I hope you can to come to our International Symposium. I inform you about the outline of the event.

Time: 10:30 - 17:30
Place: Waseda University International Conference Hall (Masaru Ibuka [ex-president of Sony Co.] Anniversary Hall)
Attendance Fee: Adult Y2500, Child & Youth Y1000 (advance tickets Y200 discount per ticket)
Access: 8 minutes from Waseda station on Tozai Subway line or 3 minutes from Waseda bus stop or 2 minutes from TODEN (Tram) Arakawa Line's Waseda station

* 10:30 Keynote Speech "What is Home Education?" by Ms. Pat Montgomery (Director of Clonlara School in USA)
* Keynote Speech "School Refusal and Home Education" by Ms. Keiko Okuchi (Director of Tokyo Shure in Japan)
* 12:00 Break Time
* 13:00 Symposium "Home Education in Each Country" (USA Japan England Korea Taiwan NZ)
* 15:40 Break Time
* 16:00 Panel Discussion "Possibilities that Home Education Open the Way to the Future"
* 17:30 Ending
* 18:00 Exchange Party(Adult Y3000 Child & Youth Y1500)

Invited Speakers:
* Ms. Pat Montgomery
* Ms. Kim Kyonhokh (Executive editor of Alternative education magazine "Mindure" inKorea)
* Ms. Lee Yanthin (Director of Taipei Autonomous School in Taiwan)
* Ms. Sarah FitzKullalizhi (Founder of home education network TCS in England)
* Ms. Lennie Harrison (Co Director of Canterbery Home-educators in NZ)

How to reserve: fax or E-mail before the event
Tokyo Shure
1-9-19 Kishimachi Kita-ku Tokyo Japan
Tel: 03-5993-3135, Fax: +8103-5993-3137
Email: Website:

Homeschooling Extraordinary Kids
Hello, I host an international forum for parents of homeschoolers who are Gifted with a Learning Disability. The forum has a database on all types of homeschooling topics including international sites as well as Gifted - LD - Gifted with LD resources. Current members represent the countries of Canada, UK, Australia, Thailand and the USA.
Created: Apr 17, 2004, Members as of today: 269
Gail, moderator and list owner

By Admin on Friday, June 17, 2005 - 9:33 pm:

The Home Schooling in Japan website now has a discussion forums type of place that I hope some people on this site will find very useful. It's a recent addition to their site and hasn't seen too much traffic yet, but it should be growing quickly I think! Here is the direct link:

By Uniopp on Tuesday, September 18, 2007 - 8:49 pm:

Hello, I'm considering homeschooling my children (Year 1, Year 4, Year 7) and I was wondering if anyone could recommend a good transitional curriculum to switch them over from Japanese to English. They are all fluent in Japanese and are currently enrolled in the Japanese public school system. They have minimal English ability so I don't think it would be possible to start them at their respective grade levels in an English curriculum. We need a kind of ESL curriculum or something with English geared for non native speakers. We are planning on living in Japan for at least another 2-4 years so we don't have the advantage of being immersed in an English environment.
Is there a good way to switch them over and bring them up to grade in English. I would also like to keep up their Japanese reading and writing ability at Japanese grade levels as they progress through future grades.
Any advice would be most appreciated.
Thank you.

By Kurz on Sunday, October 2, 2011 - 8:05 am:

It's that time of year again for 10th graders to take the PSAT tests if they are working in the USA curriculum or hoping to go to college in the USA.

Sorry for the short notice! Last year my daughter took the PSAT at Sacred Heart in Hiro (Tokyo). They were very nice about it and charged us a fair price. They happened to have a few extra test packages.

For a list of PSAT test locations in Japan please see:

By Kidsonair on Tuesday, April 8, 2014 - 1:35 pm:

Kids On Air is an exploration and discovery studio for elementary aged children.

Check them out at

Add a Message

This is a private posting area. Only registered users and moderators may post messages here.