Monday, January 30, 2012

Broken Japanese

Sometimes I write in Japanese for my students. They always laugh at what I write. Sometimes what I write is incorrect. A student might try to correct me then another student will stop them and whisper to them ''don't, its funny and interesting''. Apparently broken Japanese is as equally entertaining as broken English.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

A+ Homeroom Teacher in Japan

The sixth graders at one of my schools are killer with English.  I love teaching that class every time.  I never get complaints like ''I can't do it'' or ''I don't understand''.  They never say ''why do I have to learn English?'' or ''it's too difficult''.  I'll throw anything at them and they'll always throw it back.  What makes the big difference?  It's their homeroom teacher, who is always trying as hard as he can to use English in the classroom.  

There are those that think the ALT spurs the desire of English.  They can only do so much.  In reality, it's the character of the Japanese homeroom teacher that helps generate this quest for knowledge.

I'm still fairly fresh to the ESL world but I've noticed that Japanese homeroom teachers who show any desire to learn/teach English have students that care much more.  In Japan, there is the custom or idea (I'm not sure which) of ''saving face''.  This basically means  you try to never make a mistake infront of anyone.  That idea makes language learning, entirely more complicated.  

Now if the students have a role model, who is not afraid to make mistakes; how does that change their perception on English?  It changes it considerably.  I have third year junior high school students (9th grade USA/CAN) that don't have an ounce of courage to read simple words. Contrast that with my sixth graders, most of which will attempt to read anything and everything.  

Maybe it's that they aren't to junior high and haven't been hammered by the 'machine' that is Japanese Education.  I tend to think it has much more to do with their teacher, a fellow Japanese person, unashamed to learn and make mistakes.  

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Working on a travel blog and vlog...

A little over two weeks has passed since I made my way back to the Land of the Rising Sun.  I'm back to work and slacking off when it comes to video projects.  Ahead of me lays hours upon hours of footage I have to sift through.  It's boring, tedious, and much of the finished projects feel, unrewarding.    The only satisfaction I obtain, is knowing other people enjoyed my awkward travels.  There isn't much I have to say about Korea.  I've been there three times.  The Philippines however, was a blast!  Stay tuned!  There is plenty I have  yet to say!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

animal farm - 那須町


Friday, January 13, 2012

crop dusting in japan - 日本で散布作物

I'm hacking my way through my summer stuff. I still have a ways to go but I'll make it. One of the other videos is already completed. I just need to clean out my hard drive a bit. I'll post it this weekend. Thanks for watching!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

I'm back

I made it into Japan this past Sunday. I'm not sure when I'll begin the work on my S. Korea/Philippine videos but probably soon. There are about four or five Japan related videos I have to get through first. Let's see if I can get one done every week.