How to Spend Your School Days! Find Your Perfect Club in the School Club Pedia!
I think any of you who have seen Japanese school drama, tv, or drama have envied the “sweet and sour” Seishun. I think one of the aspects of school life in Japan that resembles Seishun are club activities, or Bukatsu as we call it in Japanese. Since it’s such a major aspect, there are even typical images of how a person tends to be just from belonging to a certain club activity. To make it more easy to understand, I will be stereotyping, so please don’t get offended!
These are the most typical “club activities” you would think of. Bukatsu is a word used to represent all communities of which meet and do the same activities in high school. The clubs in high school tend to put more emphasis on the “teamwork” part rather than the actual “skills”. Also, all clubs are mostly separated by gender.
These are the guys you would image to be doing football in American teenage dramas. Some may be the worst kind of guys, some may be the sweetest.
Basketball guys have the image of being cool and Tsundere. The cool and sweet gap is what turns girls’ eyes into hearts.
Since all high school baseball boys dream of going to Koshien, they go through hard practice everyday. Since they rarely have time to communicate with girls, they have the image of being shy and serious.
Tennis has never been a major popular sport among boys. However many energetic types of boys tend to belong to this club. Finding your “prince” in the tennis club may be a bit difficult.
The boys that belong to a dance club in high school are the wanna-be-grown-ups and wanna-be-bad-boys. They majority starts dance from high school and even if they aren’t good, they have their “dancer look” in all the time. It’s also a club where most schools have boys and girls mixed together.
This is where all the popular weak featured faces or “Salt-face” men are. They are really nice people but don’t talk much, not too dorky but have the perfect balance. They also may belong to a band.
[Going home club]
These are usually the otaku. Those who fail to fit in to the high school community end up not belonging to any club (unless there is a club where all the otakus gather)
This is where all the cute girls belong. The difference between the clubs would be that the tennis club wouldn’t be practicing so hard, hey are cute and Joshi. The volleyball team would practice seriously and mostly pretty girls would be there.
The top of the girls hierarchy usually belongs to the dance club. Since cheerleading hasn’t become a most sport to have as a club yet, the dance club is where you would find your “cheerleaders”.
[Home economics club]
They usually tend to say “Oh, I’m just training to be the perfect wife for my future husband♡” as in the means of showing off their Joshiryoku (girls’ power). They are quieter than most girls, and move in tandems.
[Going home club]
Going home club is not really a club, it just means people who don’t belong to any clubs. Of course this doesn’t apply to everyone, but there a type of girls we call “Menhera”, among Going home club. It is a made up word used for girls who seem to be having their period all year round. Sorry that was a bad way to put it. They are very very emotional so handle with care!
For those of you who may or are planning to come abroad to study in Japan for university, this should be a good reference when you are looking for your perfect community. What is different from high school is how you call the majority. Of course Bukatsu still exist. However when you say Bukatsu it means the clubs where you put 90% of your effort in life into that sport. Everybody has experience in the sport and they take part in championships and practice 5 to 7 times a week. Starting from university, there is a new genre called circles in Japanese. The best fit English word for it is probably community. They are communities that dont require as much effort as Bukatsu do. Circles are mixed with boys and girls and Bukatsu are separated like in high school. Here are some of the stereotypes most university students have about circles.
This is the type of circle that will give you the best well balanced uni life. No matter how boring your classes may be, at the circle you will be very productive! In my university, the famous productive type circles are the management staff of the university festival, broadcasting society, and advertising society.
This is the type where not many people study… I hope you get what I mean. They have an image that they are “Charai”. This is a word in Japanese used to express those who act overly familiar with others, maybe a slut, plays around with the other sex often and so on. Tennis circles have this image since their “nomikai” is crazy. They drink way too much and it isn’t rare that a girl ends up waking up in the morning naked in bed with a guy she doesn’t know.
[All round circle]
This is basically the same as the tennis circle. The name means for a circle that does anything. In other words they don’t have a definite purpose of any sort. Their nomikai is just like the tennis circles and girls, yes, so in and so forth along those lines.
[Social contribution type]
They mostly are volunteering circles. Compared to the above 3 types, the people are more mild and less outgoing. They don’t have many nomikais and most people belong to more than one of these social contribution type circles.
Of course not everything fits into this. But just think of this as another way to enjoy Japanese culture. If you are planning on coming abroad, don’t hesitate to talk to people! Although most Japanese are not confident with English, they are all interested in talking to foreigners. Get to know each other and try sharing any of your stereotypes in your country!
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