When I wrote a post last February about Ashley's love for the Animation Academy at both Walt Disney World and Disneyland, I had no idea the class is also offered at Tokyo Disneyland, and that she would take it.
On our first day at Tokyo Disneyland we saw the sign about the class, but wrote it off in order to do other things. After all, the class would be in Japanese. How much would Ashley really get out of it?
That wasn't the only difference. The class at Tokyo Disneyland is by reservation only, and has a small fee attached to it (most classes are about 500 YEN, or $5 in our mind). It is set in a room within the art gallery on Main Street. Instead of one person in the front of the room breezing through the drawing, there is the instructor, plus two people going around the room making sure everyone is staying on track.
Ashley was only one of three kids -- the other two had parents with them, and the only non-Japanese speaker. She sat up in the front of the room. We sat in the far back, not close enough to participate, but close enough to keep an eye on her. Probably unnecessary as Tokyo Disneyland only requires kids under 7 to be with an adult. It was fun for us, so we stayed. Every so often one of the assistants would give us a thumbs up sign that she was on track. Ashley later said that the instructor did a great job of miming what she was going to do before she actually drew the shape, this way she saw it happen twice.
I thought the design looked challenging -- Donald Duck holding onto a celebration balloon in honor of Tokyo Disneyland' 30th anniversary.
As you can see, Ashley did not struggle with the image at all.
The class also included a nice portfolio for her picture, which helped us get it back to NJ safely.
The whole class was only 23 minutes long from introduction to putting the last lines on the drawing.
At the end of the trip, Ashley said this was one of her highlights. I'm so proud of her!