Class Ideas

Thinking about School Uniforms

Author:Sachiko Omoto Renovich (Burnaby Mountain Secondary)

Topic/Goals:Clothing and Fashion、Communication、Comparison、School Life


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Students think about the merits and demerits of uniforms and design their favorite uniform.


To determine one's opinions about school uniforms and fashion, and discuss with peers
To design one's ideal school uniform and to describe the fashion

Target Junior, Senior High School
Japanese Level High Beginners, Intermediates
What to prepare

Click Nippon Website "Bringing Seifuku to the World!" (projected onto board or print version photocopied),
Worksheet #1(Word format) / (PDF format)
Worksheet #2 (Word format) / (PDF format) for Extension Activity


  1. The class discusses their impressions of Japanese High School fashion. Students raise their hands if they like school uniforms and explain their reasons.
  2. The teacher hands out worksheet #1 and students in pairs or groups discuss the questions and write down their answers.
  3. The teacher shows the Click Nippon article on the board, and the class reads the article out loud. (Alternatively students can read from printed versions.)
  4. The class discusses features of school uniforms and the advantages of Nanchatte Seifuku, and writes the answers on the worksheet. If class discussion in Japanese is difficult, some mother language may be used.
    Examples of Discussion Topics:
    • fashion of school uniforms
    • group dynamics in wearing school uniforms
    • individual identity as a member of a group
    • Japanese group socialization
    • impressions of various schools (images of schools with uniforms)
    • relations between uchi (students wearing the same uniform) and soto (students wearing different uniforms, students without uniforms, others)
    • dealing with school rules (ways of wearing school uniforms, fads like loose socks, changing clothes after school)
    • student thoughts and inner emotions in their desire for nanchatte seifuku
    • the role of nanchatte seifuku in pop culture (In 2009 The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Japan designated an advisor of nanchatte seifuku as a Pop Culture Promoter (Kawaii Ambassador)
    • thoughts about cosplay
    and other topics

Extension Activity

My Ideal School Uniform

  1. The class reviews words related to clothes. The teacher writes out vocabulary for school uniforms. It is also useful to talk about words for colour and patterns. The website for CONOMi and Artermis Tokyo are helpful.
  2. The teacher hands out worksheet #2 and explains about the project.
  3. Students design their ideal school uniforms and write their descriptions.
  4. Students can present their designs to the class, or the teacher can display their designs on the bulletin board.

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