This SBS 2 documentary shows us what it's like to be a young student in Japan where parents expect you to be self-reliant at such an early age.
How would you feel if you see a very young child walking to school on his own? Would you be impressed? Or would you be alarmed about the fact that a child is travelling by himself without any adult companion? It’s a scary world out there, right?
According to the short documentary by SBS 2, this is a typical sight in Japan.
Although most tourists are shocked to see little kids walking by themselves, the practice is actually common in the country. This is a huge difference when compared with Western countries where parents make the effort to drive their children to school on a daily basis.
The Australian TV channel’s documentary shows us that Japanese boys and girls are taught principles of self-reliance at a tender age. In fact, they are encouraged to be independent in many different aspects of life.
Meet 7-year-old Noe Ando who begins the day by bathing and dressing up on her own. After preparing, she then commutes to her school every day by riding the train and then transferring to the JR Shinjuku Station, the world’s busiest station in terms of number of passengers.
According to Ando’s mother:
“Her parents won’t be with her so she has to learn how to solve things herself. If she gets lost or catches the wrong train, she has to figure it out on her own.”
It’s really amazing but most parents will still be hesitant about the idea of letting kids travel just like that – especially with all the scary stories about pedophiles and abductors out there.
A Reddit user shed light on the topic and shared some comments. According to him:
“I think besides the lower crime rate, Japanese communities tend to be a little more collective when it comes to child rearing…I think that many [Japanese] kids if they were lost or in trouble would have very little problems with asking strangers for help, especially elderly people. I was raised to be the complete opposite; every stranger is a possible criminal who may want to hurt me. ”
Fellow parents, would you be brave enough to send your kids to school on their own? Why or why not? Hit the comment section and let’s talk about it!
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