【佐倉市】田んぼの学校 レポート with子供と東都生協

千葉県 Chiba-ken
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[Sakura City] Rice Field School Report with Children and the Toto Co-op


I have been in the Toto Co-op for seven and a half years. I joined the co-op as if it were an extension of online shopping, but I also experienced the regional coordinator and the president, and when I realized it, I became an indispensable part of my life.


Mom takes a selfie because she’s free while waiting for Hatchan’s toilet.

In particular, the rice field school is one of the things that makes me happy to have joined the Toto Co-op. My daughter (Hatchan) and I participated in a rice field school in Usui City, Chiba Prefecture in 2018 and 2019.


So, today’s theme of “Going out with elementary school students in Tokyo!” Is the rice field school and the Toto Co-op.


What is a rice field school?

At the rice field school, union members work together to weed.


The Toto Cooperative Rice Field School is a project where you can learn about the rice growth process through rice cultivation in the rice fields and interact with the producers. It is carried out on a yearly basis, and recruitment is carried out around January every year, and work is carried out about 12 times from March to November harvest.


The process of making rice from desolate farmland by stepping on the ground together with adults and children is a moving thing.

My daughter living in Tokyo, who only knows nature in the park in everyday life


The Toto Co-op has been running a rice field school since 2009. It’s been 10 years since the project started. Some have already participated many times and are veterans, while others like me are the first to participate with children.


Rice field school teacher, meeting time, belongings, fee

引用:東都生協公式ページより (https://www.tohto-coop.or.jp/


① Teacher


Since the rice field school is a school, there are teachers. A little less than 10 staff members of the Funabashi Agricultural Products Supply Center, which wholesales vegetables to the Toto Co-op, are involved. Every time, they will pick you up at Keisei-Usui Station by van (those who are late will go to the site by bus etc.) and will also send you back to Keisei-Usui Station. (⇒ Thank you very much !!)

Participants will attach a name tag so that the staff can understand it.


② Meeting time

Some people bring the green flag of the Toto Co-op.


The meeting time is early in the morning. Meet at the foot of the stairs at Keisei Usui Station at 9:15 in the morning. It wouldn’t be a normal time for those who are early in the morning, but for me, who was oversleeping, this was the biggest bottleneck. (⇒ pathetic;)

Working with others in a quiet rice field can be innocent.


It’s okay if your clothes are dirty or your luggage is heavy. However, there were times when it was so burdensome that I thought it was early in the morning (Oh, what should I do to continue?).


③ What to bring

When you enter the rice field with your boots, the mud does not come off easily.


The rice field school is located in the mountains, about 15 minutes by car from Keisei Usui Station. There are huts and greenhouses as facilities, but you will bring your own. I think it would be nice to have something like the following.

[What to bring at the rice field school]

・レジャーシート Picnic sheet

・水筒 Water bottle


Lunch (a snack for children is also acceptable)

・汗拭きタオル Sweat towel

・虫よけスプレー Insect repellent spray


Rice planting boots (⇒ I definitely need this)

・着替えとビニール袋 Change of clothes and plastic bag



There are many insects and birds singing in the mountains.


In 2018 and 2019, it was only 5,000 yen per family including insurance fee, miso soup, barbecue fee and transportation. This is, to be clear, exceptional.


The price was raised to 10,000 yen in the recruitment in 2020, but I applied because I thought it was too cheap (originally it was too cheap). When I looked at the prices of eco-chills and other private sector farming experience tours, I gave up on the price of a day tour, such as 5,000 yen or 10,000 yen each time.


Why did you apply for a rice field school? Opinions of participating moms

Children and adults spend a lot of time in a nice group.


The rice field school of the Toto Co-op is not a one-off project, but a continuous project in which you participate continuously from spring to autumn. Therefore, I think it is easy to get along with other union members.

Sprinkle “bran” on the rice fields to prevent pests.



For example, there was a serious middle-aged man who always handed out his own coffee at noon. (I’m a man, but this is attentive. It’s amazing!) I secretly respected him. Also, the children who played a lot with our Hatchan and the father who is good at catching insects.
Thanks to that, even when I saw the frog, I stopped yelling “Gya ~!” YO ♡The people who come to the rice field school are all good people, so my heart is healed ♡


I talked a lot with toddlers aged 3-4, boys in the third grade of elementary school, and moms with girls, who are similar to Hatchan. The reason I brought him to the rice field school is “I want my children to experience nature and interact with people of all ages.”

Children playing with insects and exploration ♡


The reason I was impressed by other moms was that “many smart people have a lot of nature experiences in their childhood.” Certainly, my respected picture book writer, Satoshi Kako, also left a comment to the effect that “everything important was learned from nature.”


Spring-Autumn omnibus ・ October is a harvest festival

We are all planting rice in May.


The rice field school is relatively wild like the V6 program. First of all, the first time we will start by making stairs on the mountain road as a way to reach the rice fields. We also cut out the bamboo used for the shavings.


In the first year, it’s all about keeping up. I feel that I finally grasped the flow of rice making in the second year. Due to the corona in 2020, there was no participation of union members, and instead the staff maintained the rice fields.

This H & M red jumpsuit. It won’t be in next year ~;


This is an article about the woodworking class at the Center Festival of the Toto Co-op.
We also visited the meatball factory at the Toto Co-op.


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