Monthly Archives: November 2015

Hi everyone, 皆さん、こんにちは。

My Japanese classes/lessons included practices to develop skills of speaking, reading, listening, writing (including weekly essays on a variety of topics for Intermediate 1), interacting and constructing/performing japanese coursestudents’ own dialogues by pairs/groups or by oneself. The learning includes the language and cultural skills used in travelling in Japan and general understanding on Japanese culture. Speaking practice
sometimes used the pictures, concepts or topics from the brochures of the Japan National Tourism Organizations,
Nichigo Press, Daily Telegraph etc.

Intermediate 1 (that will finish this Friday) has been using a textbook, Japanese for Busy People, Book 2 + Workbook. They finished up to the middle of Unit 3 of the book. They have been great and exciting to teach each time. So were their homework submitted, i.e. mostly essay writing each time and that was on a variety of topics, e.g. one’s childhood, a great trip taken, a favorite movie or food, the person who one respects, contrast of cultures. They wrote very honestly and analytically for the contents and used a variety of grammar and vocabulary. One of the students loves Japanese songs and he sang one of his favorites on two occasions very naturally and skillfully. That was great for the class. Music and songs (just as Japanese dance, paintings, traditional sports, such cooking and artcraft)

Regarding Beginners 2, the class finished half of the 10 weeks’ course. It became more settled down compared to the starting time of the course (i.e. in the 1st lesson, I felt there was quite a difference in ability and knowledge in language, depending on the learner.) I felt much easier in teaching them in the recent week. Also, last week, one of the students of the above class, who is a secondary school (senior level) asked me to write my endorsement for the student’s application for a kind of scholarship to go and study in Japan for an school exchange. I was very pleased with that and made a very positive comment for the student’s wish and plan for the new life and learning experiences and opportunity.

Pertaining to weekly tutorials based students, the company executive who recently took a 2 weeks’ Japanese course in Tokyo, sent me email to inform me how the things were going. He said the course in Tokyo was great and after the course, he has been enjoying the holiday/travel in Japan, its many interesting or significant places for further few weeks before returning to Sydney and my tutorials. He visited the nearby town to Mt Fuji and stayed in a nice hotel. He highly praised the beauty of the mountain. – I am looking forward to hearing all other updated things about Japan and his experiences and comments about his trip in that land when he returns.

Another weekly tutorial student, who is also very passionate, hardworking and highly motivated in the learning Japanese, she finished up to the middle of Unit 9, Genki Book 1 (+ Workbook). Also, like other classes, I used Real Life Japanese + cd (by C. Dibble & S. Matsumoto, 2001, UNICOM), which esp. deals with foods and language used in eating out. The series of that book is quite plain forms based in dialogue samples. Other course textbooks, which I use for teaching at SLS, are mostly polite forms orientated (that is also or sometimes much more important than plain forms to learn before interacting with Japanese people). Plain forms are very useful to create more confidence in having or understanding natural conversations with Japanese native speakers. So, the series is very useful and some students commented so to me too.

As for culture/Japanese society, I informed the following to my students/classes.

One is the Japanese Film Festival run by The Japan Foundation (See: http://japanesefilmfestival.net/about-the-festival). It is a film festival of the world’s largest scale with many high quality movies (including those of award winning internationally and nationally) with English subtitles. The Festival officially began in 1997. Last year, the Festival had audience of about 31,800 in Australia. This year, in 6 states and 8 major cities in Australia, it brings many films (Sydney: 5 ~ 15 Nov.) For learners of Japanese language and culture, the films shown there will be excellent resources.

Japanese national-wide annual competition of high schools’ baseball clubs, koko-yakyuu, was hele in the middle of October (last month) (NHK TV, 15.10.15, SBS TV).  It is the 100th year after the national annual event began in Japan. That is excellent and very wise custom and social events in my view. That creates numerous positive merits and value, e.g. motivation, pursuit of higher skills and disciplines among youngsters, high standards in baseball. The excellent players from the outcome of the games, will be recruited into the professional teams of Japanese baseball games.

NHK TV (23.10.15, SBS TV) reported that the Prime Minister Abe visited the central Asia, such as Mongolia etc. In Mongolia, he made the treaty agreement of exchange with the country, such as import of oil field based resources from Mongolia and Japan’s offering infrastructure of developing energy related technology, other technology etc. Interesting news.

Japanese Teacher, Toshiko Jackson

4.11.15

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