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7 up Japan Can Help Prove How Similar Japan and Austrlaia Are

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Not so different After All...

It is widely thought that people who live in Japan are completely different to people who live in Australia. This however is untrue in most aspects. Japanese people have similar situations in home life, school and their goals in life just like people in Australia. Many examples from the movie 21 up Japan[1] can be used to successfully show these similarities and differences by looking at the different aspects of the lives of 13 children as they grow and compare it to life in Australia.

One thing that is the similar between a Japanese family and an Australian family is their home life. Most Australians see a Japanese family as one thing: a mother, father and one child living in a traditional house full of traditional furniture, this however is not the case in most families. Just like in Australia there are many different situations. One example of this is Maki[1] who is an single parent with a daughter named Saya before the age of 21 and lives with her parents. Another is Yumi who lives with both of her parents but mainly relies on the father for income while their mother is a housewife, Yumi states when she is young that she doesn't know what they would do if her father was to looses his job. Many of them are not only child and have siblings as well, two examples of this are Eri and Maki (who are twins) and Takae which is much like Australia where it is quite common to have more than one child, once to the point of having a saying "One for mum, one for dad and one for the country!"[2] This is because no matter weather you live in Australia, Japan or another country everyone is going to have a different family and different situations in relationships, there is no dead set normality when it come to family. Japanese people and Australian people have similar home lives in the sense that no two are the same.

One thing that is considerably different between Japan and Australia is schooling. In Japan children go to 3 levels of school: Primary, Middle and then high school. They take 'Entrance exams' for privet high schools (and middles schools) and their score on the exam determines what school they can go to the school they have chosen or not. These exams are very hard and people often do not get into the school they chose (like Takako who studied quite hard but did not get a high enough grade for the school she wanted[1]). In Australia however, it is almost unheard of to have a 'middle' school with all schools for ages between 5-18 either being a primary school or a high school with no middle school in between. Another difference is that most high schools (private or not) do not require any exams to enter. Similarly though, in both Japan and Australia there are private & public schools and the private schools always cost more than the public schools. It it also possible to move from a public



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