My bicycle is resembling despair day by day.
is A Handbook for Teaching English at Japanese Colleges and Universities. The book is a compilation work done by a man named Paul Wadden; is various journals written on experiences of Teaching English at Japanese Colleges through which experiences teachers from the U.S., England, Australia etc discuss informative strategies they attained through classrooms. There are several specific difficulties in relation to English classes in Japan. Some are because of educational system itself, such as "less communication with students" thanks to one class per week curricula. Others, peculiar to Japanese psyche, that is; wall of silence and nationwide low standard in regard to writing, speaking, and listening in English.
You might say that the trouble peculiar to Japanese people (including me) in the international context may have deeper roots; cultural difference. I don't disagree. But we cannot improve our culture in the same way as a second language.
The English education in Japan begins with junior high school (twelve years olds') English text book. For me, the very first encounter with English was this useful expression:
This is a pen.
Somehow, I can still remember it clearly.
(Indeed, there will be no situation where you have to say "this is a pen" except presenting it to a blind person, or in some situation comedy). I feel like it was a real encounter. We the teacher and students
This is a pen.
This is a dog.
This is a lion.
(Probably that was at least in part because of the fact that there were just two or three classrooms per week).
And the next week thank God turns out to be like:
Are these bells?
Yes, these are bells.
So, after all, some problems are unique to Japan in teaching English. The writers, who's occupation are foreign teacher in colleges, introduce practical methods and teaching styles acquired through their own teaching. For one, a college professor introduces the A+ strategy. That the conversation with Japanese students (and citizens alike) at times falls into police interrogation-like "facts" questioning; asking facts; answering facts; asking facts; answering facts; and the talk does not go anywhere. Like yamanote-line. And they sometimes ask things like whether I like "nattou" (a traditional Japanese food) from out of nowhere, a writer says. It would be helpful for both them and us if there is some rule, that is; Answer Plus something. Some personal opinion regarding the reply or some-thing: "I'm from California where my father and grandfather lived in." A: "How nice, I'd like to go see Safeco field!" etc--not like "do you like lions?" anyway.
When Japanese students enter into colleges they have a level of vocabulary and grammatical knowledge. The problem is they (or I might say we) have little or no practice using English to communicate with others. Evey texts are first and for the last time translated into Japanese, and this enables English classrooms to fall into some sort of English laboratory; they are studying, not using. To break though this confidence or conference in their own cult, English language instructors are required to make use of best advisable devices which, hopefully offers a chance for students to become familiar with raw materials. This book discusses what kind of reading and listening materials are suited to Japanese students as well as its workable strategies in the field. And aside from reading and listening, English teachers have to deal with prevalent theme: the lack of spontaneity among Japanese students. The basic line recommended for new candidates, though, is not to go against students and admins and Japanese culture. To cultivate the class, and to found a hybrid (--Japanese and somewhere you belong) environment is made something of concern in a chapter of this compilation work. Culture, I think, is something like Maxims of Speech. You cannot change them. Again, a level of quietude maybe seems unique to a Westerner, and needs to be understood. It has a root in the Confucius based enculturation that calls for humility and harmony. Braking the Maxims I'm sorry but it's ten to four in the morning, at around halfway to the appendix an associate professor at Kyoto University discusses; it might be beneficial to let them write a short paragraph as a response, as a means to express an honest feeling on the spot.
And "that" was not disagreeable to me.
three in the morning after finishing homework
kicking back with a cup of coffee in my hand
coming around here to seek out a means to reorganize
I found whether it's suitable for the situation that the subject should be I or some other...
Here're voices of Stuart Dybek. One of the best guy in the world extant. I just want to post these links for myself, so I can go and listen at any time:
http://www.lib.msu.edu/vincent/writers/spring03/041803.htm A lecture
http://www.lions-online.org/podcasts/dybek.html "We didn't"
Written form interviews:
Human laziness is that if I download these to the harddrive, I'd forget about them.
I lost my salad.
Working for the Queen: A Reaction to Edwin R. McDaniel’s “Japanese Nonverbal Communication”: (I cannot correct the minor bug in the indentation)
As a clue to understand cultural motivation which is peculiar to Japanese society, McDaniel directs our attention to nonverbal interactions among Japanese people. Since every form of intercultural intercourses are taking place with a greater frequency in today’s world, individuals are asked to realize a level of awareness toward “cultural antecedents and motivations” which stipulate communicational conventions of each country. Employing a method established by M.E.Opler and J.K.Burgoon and J.L.Hale, McDaniel identifies and isolates “consistent themes” (1) such as Confucian-based collectivism, harmony, hierarchy, humility, and/or formality which he consider is conducive to thoroughly demonstrate what underlies Japanese relational communications. McDaniel introduces eleven propositions based on various past studies ranging from 1966 to 1998 (those tentative propositions deal respectively with “body language”, “eye contact”, “facial expression”, “space expectation”, and so on), through which several consistent cultural themes are directly rendered. In conclusion, McDaniel elaborates a couple of difficulties pertain to a wider application of his approach.
In order to explore and appreciate the formation of value system of a particular culture, McDaniel’s affirmative propositions are by no means discrediting. He lends his hands to encourage straightforward understanding of behavioural codes unique to Japan. However, his thematic study often skips essential information which, quite unreasonably are not likely to be fully appreciated by those who have no experience of visiting Japan or other East Asian countries. In other words, McDaniel’s propositional approach has a given number of imperfections that are resulted from his well-qualified design itself, which potentially provide openings for long been established inter-cultural misunderstandings and miscommunications.
For example, under proposition No.10 McDaniel explains; Instances of “ma” (silence) in Japanese discourse can impart a variety of messages, with the context supplying the actual meaning. He attributes this aspect of nonverbal interaction in part to “a general mistrust of spoken words.” (McDaniel 9) The argument should be more prim and neat provided that he is not addressing exclusively ones who are living in Japan. Since any other given cultures may collectively or not have some of “a general mistrust of spoken words”, representation of specific instances is needed; in this case, he could either give example or provide felt reliability of the source should one accept the above attribution.
For one, language teachers from foreign countries (especially from the “West”) often face uncomfortable silence or hardly determinable vocalics—one such interpretable into “um, uh…mmm…” It takes just two steps for an English Language Program in Japan to fall into the characteristic silence. 1) He or she begins the class with “hello, how are you?” The reply comes as a group. Scarcely the class begins to speak up how the last weekend was like. 2) The instructor asks whether they had finished assignments. ”Um, uh…mmm…” It is not unimaginable that a foreigner who is going to pay a first-time visit to Japan may well be unable to discern that this exactly is where [the] Japanese [students] are “drawing on” the “situational context”, and the protracted silence means that they/we are trying to “empathetically determine the needs of another person” (McDaniel 9). This type of wall of silence is rarely due to “a general mistrust of spoken words.”
McDaniel’s dynamic affirmations provide us with an entrance—through his succinct identification of themes—for a subtler appreciation of our own culture and positive alternate perspective for favorite view of shyness and lack of spontaneity among Japanese people. In comparison to the entire quality of his study, potency of the over-implications could possibly be ignoble. Still defects would only be construable to “defects” and unpardonable in the academic enclave; prerogative of the academy may lie in the process of the inquiry and its legitimacy, and not such that defendable without explication and sufficient communication of that process. Any scholar ought not take charge of this kind of hasty misconception. To strike a fair balanced intercourse, we must press forward with our investigation into the “difference” and its validity.
1. ”over-implications”: e.g. under Proposition No.3 McDaniel asserts; “A smile can indicate happiness or serve as a friendly acknowledgment.” “Alternatively, it may be worn to mask negative emotions, especially displeasure, anger, or grief.” Rather, I am angry about this because it is completely inaccurate. In my understanding, the smile could have meant “helplessness” or “dismay” or just because of “embarrassment” that is worn to avoid discord, and it is by no means “anger” nor “grief”. Such a usage does not exist in Japan.
2. Again, some more minor moderations would be desirable in order that keep away with potential inter-cultural preconceptions. E.g. under the “olfactices” we can see the following lines: “Although there is no supporting evidence, the near ritual tradition of frequent baths and the desire to refrain from personal offense corroborates this contention.” (JNC: A Review and Critique of Literature p.18) The “the” may have a less necessity today.
3. It can be inferred from his Conclusion that McDaniel may readily admit that weakness and strength of his work reside in the same place—that is, because of his assertive [propositional] style, wherein a possibility, I think, lie for a society or culture to become more open. The design like it or not assumes complementary role with the naiveté of Japanese psyche.
Edwin R. McDaniel Japanese Nonverbal Communication: A Reflection of Cultural Themes. 2006 Thomson Learning.
At 2:00 p.m.
I cannot remember whether its pronunciation was
Ámherst or Amĥerst.
It was something like [æımэst]
on the Moleskin
is my St. Chibi
downloaded and printed out without permission
I glued him with an instant adhesive
so you can see the droppings
"Race is a central test of our belief that we're our brother's keeper, our sister's keeper...There's a sense that if we are to get beyond our racial divides, that it should be neat and pretty, whereas part of my argument was that it's going to be hard and messy--and that's where faith comes in"
---Barack Obama Newsweek Jul. 21
I got used to be alone
from the day when I entered in the elementary school, my mother was working outside
I used to go back home with a key
my elder brother and sister were usually not in the home
hanging around somewhere...with their friends or still in the class
my mom used to come back home at around six thirty.
I used to spend my time in the traditional Japanese closet
where the mattress (futon) was stowed
staring wave line of the wood panel
an hour, two hours, or three hours sometimes
(which means I least like the recent version of Dorae-mon
it seems to me a kind of byproduct of Educational Affairs Group
I don't like educational system as a whole...
who on earth likes it then...??) (Anyway)
my father came back or used to visit home only on Saturdays to spend one night
the table would become oppressively silent when he was home
nobody spoke during supper, even words like "pleas pass that on to me"sounded as if a significant statement has just made. that was
I understand what was going on around me
my father was living in another place with another woman
I knew that even at that time that he's not living with our family
My father is probably a kind of psychiatrist who's half dis-ease himself
...on his recuperation hopefully...
rumor has it he has a son, twenty years old or so
the source is my brother...
it is not unfeasible my cousin is now in the same university...though I don't care about
My identified cousin found a way to a psychiatric ward from out of the blue
that was last month
don't wanna know about the detail.
I'm not in a bad shape with my father today
we meet twice a year or so and talk something with each other
I like him.
but just that.
I didn't make a single friend during elementary school years
while I was in the third grade in the school I began making friends at last
but meantime my parents got divorced in the end
of four years of hopeless battle (maybe my mom had to talk something with him about Money
but it was long) (strangely, though, I think I am the one who appreciate their sanguinary waste in some way)
and we moved on to another district
the outlook seems bleak
but like flowers or vegetables or weeds or something like that we can manage ourselves
because we are preprogrammed to do so.
If I failed, these cold facts
would stand before me again
I worked a little bit
fifteen pieces of part-times (circa)
the longest, a year and half
shortest, you can imagine
mostly I read books
two sets of World Literature
whole through, from the Homer to Somebody I cannot remember
and Kant and Showpenhoawar (cannot spell)
and what the hell, Holy Bible for just for the sake of argument.
So...what you've learned?
"honor is for women and virtue is for men."
"and if you want to be stupid, you just need to address a woman about virtue."
"she cannot select herself...but she just can be selected."
what else. that's wholesale true.
Therefore, he had to say;
"Men who deserve to be hanged considerably outnumber women who deserve to be exiled to an island."
in seventeen seventy something.
All things considered, though, what I've learned is what I had had already known
I just found out things I already knew.
So, what for? Why do you read?
Can those Read books be like savings for bank account?
"and darkness was upon the face of the deep"
I like Melville ("Piear"..."Pierl", or..."Pierr"is his best work.)
and Dickinson (at least I can spell).
and Thomas Mann was my Mann of course
Some might have to be kind enough to tell me that my liking is non of anyone's bloody business
I loved a woman
150 cm (I am not used to foot and inch) tall.
round faced (round faced Mignon. I miss her from time to time)
and what's more... she loved me...
I don't know what happened to her for
we lived in an apartment for
maybe five years
this is me.
I'm off to save my life
Since I now am a university student and sitting ELP classes (in Japan), I suppose it ain't an unexpected bahabiour when I start using this place to introduce and try get rid of unclear feeling toward what I'm (quite belatedly though) doing in the daytime
A bad example.
I have an ambivalent feeling toward English Language Program in my university which, I understand is the only ELP extant in Japan. Who cares? Dunno.
Not worthy of reading these bellow. I cannot delete just I got an attachmen'
The last article is written by Pat Shipman (from The Evolution of Racism: Human Differences and the Use and Abuse of Science), and it closes like this:
We are collectively responsible for the appalling conditions under which so many live, for the opportunities not offered, for the chances not received, for the training never made available. These disasters are our fault, which we must acknowledge and redress. But we are also deeply and individually responsible for our own failures of potential: for the practice skipped, for the basic facts or skills not memorized and reinforced, for the opportunities that were too much hard work to seize, for the moral laziness that makes us lower our standards for ourselves to the point of failure.
I don't know how to say. I like the article itself. It's a quality work, and highly investigative for all of us. Shipman quite quite quite vigorously investigate past study of his own field which, in the end, engendered pure Racism, namely Nazis. I now am entitled to see what happened around that time more clearly because of him. What I wanted to say is...I don't know. The next that follows the above sentences is:
"We all know a gifted student who can't be bothered to do homework, it is a bitter waste. The hope is that we have also all seen the student of modest ability who excels through hard work. It is a lesson we must take to heart."
I don't know how to say. I'm not going to say this is suggestive and this is not good. But for one thing, "bitter waste" doesn't necessarily mean low grades. It is everywhere. Logically speaking, it might potentially be in every heartfelt laughters.
And another is moral laziness or the failures of potential.
I'm sided by two walls here which look so inescapable.
I'd like to admit that I'm a lazy person, because it is not very far from the truth.
And I need laughters from time to time.
The classroom I'm now in is the last one for me, and it is turning out to be good. I found out things that I didn't and couldn't notice by myself which were vaguely there in my mind. That is that, my vocabulary is not enough. But what's more important to me is that I'm knowing that I now am trying to be myself in a valid way. Buuut yes, the closing sentence. Shouldn't someone say "take it easy," or "why should we discuss about perception of self in the first place? And that, whole through three months. Is that something we can do with a certain nonchalance?":
"As a species, we must examine ourselves and accept responsibility for our behavior, as dose the growing child, or face the awful prospect of never reaching any sort of maturity."
I couldn't say more...
>Damn. I want to discuss something about Albert Giacometti...
>or somebody instead of...
Four is the number of death.
Brown is the color of sadness.
M is something ominous.
Why I guess so,
Nebulous is still,
Loyal is the purple.
"tired and gone"
Five is the perfect,
but not enough