Last night, I had the pleasure of speaking to an actual Japanese high school teacher about high school life in Japan. I met him in a chatroom gaps school lunch ideas year ago, but I never thought of asking him for details until last night. Here is some of the information that I gained from him. Please note that some of it may be exclusive to the particular Japanese high school that he works at.
Students may arrive at school anytime from 7:30 AM to 8:30 AM. Homeroom lasts from 8:30 AM to 8:40 AM. There is a ten-minute prep for the next class from 8:40 AM to 8:50 AM. The first class lasts from 8:50 AM to 9:40 AM. There is a ten-minute prep for the next class from 9:40 AM to 9:50 AM. The second class lasts from 9:50 AM to 10:40 AM. There is a ten-minute prep for the next class from 10:40 AM to 10:50 AM.
The third class lasts from 10:50 AM to 11:40 AM. There is a ten-minute prep for the next class from 11:40 AM to 11:50 AM. The fourth class lasts from 11:50 AM to 12:40 PM. Lunchtime lasts from 12:40 PM to 1:15 PM. There is a ten-minute prep for the next class from 1:15 PM to 1:25 PM. The fifth class lasts from 1:25 PM to 2:15 PM.
There is a ten-minute prep for the next class from 2:15 PM to 2:25 PM. The sixth class lasts from 2:25 PM to 3:15 PM. Students clean up the school from 3:15 PM to 3:30 PM. There is one final Homeroom class from 3:30 PM to 3:45 PM.
At this point, students are free to leave and go home, or stick around and do club activities. During summer, the school closes at 6:00 PM. During winter, the school closes at 4:00 PM. If we want to go full school simulation, then the game would follow a schedule exactly like this one. In some Japanese high schools, the students stay in one classroom, and the teachers change classes.
This would mean that the 10-minute gaps between classes are not playable sequences where you can walk around the school. If we choose to set this game in a school where the students have to change classes during those 10-minute gaps, then there are potentially 6 more opportunities to walk around the school, but for much shorter periods of time. Would you prefer ten or more opportunities to walk around the school throughout the day? Or would you prefer four chances to walk around the school?
Do you think it would be best if the player is only allowed to walk around the school during club time, since that is the longest period of time that students can freely wander around the school? I was also sure to ask him what is suspicious and what isn’t suspicious to see a student doing. It’s not suspicious for a student to wander around the school at lunchtime. It’s not suspicious for a student to wander around the school during club time even if they’re not in a club. Many students stick around at school to study, or do their homework. Other students from that club would also know who should and shouldn’t carry around a specific type of case. Students are expected to bring their own lunches to school.