Friday, 20 April 2018

My Neighbourhood/Neighborhood - Taiki

After reading_Missing in sydney

When I stayed in Fiji, I went to beautiful island as one-day trip. (I forgot the name of island.)
The sea was extremely beautiful. The water was clear and I could see tropical fish in the water. I did snorkeling in the sea. It was really fantastic!! I saw fishes called Amphiprion which became a model for Disney movie of Nimo. They were really cute and tiny.I did not expect to watch the Nimo in the sea, so I was very impressed.
As the water was very clean, there were corals. It was first time for me to see real corals. And I did not know that corals were dangerous. When I was snorkeling, I wore sandals to protect my feet, but I did not were anything for my shins.. So, my shins were bloody and it was like horror movie when I got out from the sea. There was a happening, but it’s good experience.

Monday, 16 April 2018

It's my birthday - a student writes

My favourite day of the week is Sunday. I usually go to the park in the afternoon, then I usually go to the department store. It's next to the movie theater. My mother likes nice shoes. I do too!

I'm walking to my cousin's home. We usually have fun. Yesterday it was rainy. We were at school. How's the weather today? It's sunny!

Today is April 16th. It's my birthday. My mother is making a cake. The party is at 7:00pm. See you then!

Posted for Nana (13 today!)

Thursday, 12 April 2018

My home town

I live in Matsumoto city which is commercial city in Nagano prefecture. It's has poplation 200000 people. It's near The Japan Alps and old castle. So.a lot of tourist visit here all year round.

My home town is beautiful and safe. Important tourist attractions are Matsumoto castle and traditional street name is Nakamati close castle. You can also see The Japanese Alps. The most famous peak is Jonen. It's 2880meters high it looks like Mt.Fuji.

The weather is severe, summer season is hot and humid, winter season is terribly cold.

It's famous for Matsumoto Castle constructed 400years ago. It's almost all black, It looks like a crow so it's called Crow castle.

The best things about Matsumoto are it has good soba restaurant, and kind people. I love Matsumoto.

A postcard from ... Pantai Tengah Beach, Langkawi, Malaysia

Dear Jim, Yukari,

and all the wonderful students at Luna.

Having a wonderful time.

Wish you were here!

All the best,


Monday, 9 April 2018

Postcard from... Tanjung Rhu Beach, Langkawi, Malaysia

Dear all members of Luna,

I'm staying at Langkawi, Malaysia now with my family. I'm having a very wonderful time with beautiful sea, great nature, nice foods and cheap beer! I want to stay here more & more!
Best regards,

Saturday, 7 April 2018

Story telling in the future tense - Predicting Matt's future

As a final writing task after practising using 'will' & 'going to' for future predictions, I set up a creative writing task to make predictions about the futures of 4 high school friends, using the visual prompts on the worksheet to help them generate ideas. Do you agree with the examples of 'will' & 'going to' in these texts?

Matt's future:

Matt isn't going to graduate the high school. He wanted to become an actor. He was hopeful, but his parents felt sad.

At first, he is going to audition for a commercial. He won't get a job. Reality was strict. He is going to get a part time job and he is going to study at an acting school for 2 years. One day he is going to get a small role in TV drama. He was very happy.

He is going to become very popular. He is going to get main role in TV drama series after three years

Finally he is going to move to Hollywood. He is going to get main role in some movie. Now he is going to become super star. Dream come true! He get much money and become a big name.

Posted for Yoko

50 word story challenge

“Never again”

Tomoro was disappointed. He’d practiced for a big competition coming up in two weeks. He’d done everything he could. Unfortunately, he hurt his lumbar and lost in his first match. Because of his back, he couldn’t play badminton for another fortnight. He got extremely angry and smashed his big brother.

Posted for Tomoro

Friday, 6 April 2018

Story telling in the future tense - Predicting Josh's future

As a final writing task after practising using 'will' & 'going to' for future predictions, I set up a creative writing task to make predictions about the futures of 4 high school friends, using the visual prompts on the worksheet to help them generate ideas. Do you agree with the examples of 'will' & 'going to' in these texts?

Josh's future:

Josh is going to drop out of high school because he deside to become musician. Soon, he is going to become a street musician and work part time job. But his song won't popular, he will be depressed.

3 years later he is going to work in a music shop. He is going to work hard and hard, he is going to the top of the music shop.

He is going to be a little rich man, so he is going to try to be a musician again. He is going to compose and play by YouTube.

One day his music video is going to popular. He will be happy. He is going to quit the music shop. He will have ambition to become famous musician.

Posted for Misuzu

Thursday, 5 April 2018

Story telling in the future tense - Predicting Gemma's future

As a final writing task after practising using 'will' & 'going to' for future predictions, I set up a creative writing task to make predictions about the futures of 4 high school friends, using the visual prompts on the worksheet to help them generate ideas. Do you agree with the examples of 'will' & 'going to' in these texts?

Gemma's future:

Gemma loves sports, especially snowboarding. In winter she goes snowboarding every weekend. Even in summer she does hard training for snowboarding.

She is going to get a snowboarding scholarship from a university. She is going to take part in a lot of games. She is going to win in some games.

She is going to be an Olympian of the Winter Olympics. She will get a bronze medal at first entry. She is going to be famous. In the next Winter Olympics she is going to get a silver medal. Just before her third entry in Winter Olympics, she will break her leg during practice.

Posted for Misako

Friday, 30 March 2018

A World Flag for Tokyo 2020

With the 2020 Tokyo Olympics up ahead, I encouraged some high school students to design a 'World Flag' for independent Olympians to unite and represent a common cause. Here are the results accompanied by a written description.

Top left has a building, bottom left has house, top right has mountain, bottom right has river. The centre has Earth.

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

After reading- Miami Police File: the O'Nell Case

We are going to have a Halloween party.
The Halloween party is held in Buenavista where near Matsumoto station. Food and drink including alcohol are prepared by the hotel. We will request the hotel to provide Halloween food. The room will be putting up Halloween decorations. We will arrange a lot of jack-o’-lantern to decollate the room. The light is little bit dark.
We offer to our colleague a dress code. It is important things to success the Halloween party! We need to wear Halloween costume to go this party. 
We are planning to have a game in the party. In our plan, we will do bingo game and winner will get a gorgeous gift. In the end, we will take a picture for our memory.

Monday, 26 March 2018

Lesson One - a super fluent self-intro

Check out the creative skills on my new super achieving 7 year old student! She made this blue-eyed terrier, and had him narrate her self-introduction with an Aussie accent. I think it's super nifty, and got us off to a great start!

Thank you Tomomi & Yuasa at CUP in Tokyo for advice on the book as well...Guess What!

A posctard from Taipei

Hi everyone,

I am in Taipei, where the Chihiro Iwasaki(my husband’s mother’s) exhibition has been held. Yesterday my husband Takeshi gave a lecture in the National History Museum, the place is held the exhibition. Lots of people came to hear that. It made me surprise. After that, we are enjoying good Taiwanese food. People in here is very warm and kind. This country is getting familiar for me.

From Teruki

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Home for Christmas

Winter is my favourite season, especially when it snows. Write an essay to agree/disagree

My favorite season is the summer.

I’m living in Nagano PRF and my old house is close to mountain. Therefore, it is quite cold and a lot of snow in winter. If I put the glass of water at room without heater, it is frozen in one day. Additionally, I need to remove snow from the early morning and usually hit traffic jam by a lot of snow.
Although spring and autumn are also good, it is little bit cold early morning and evening, and a lot of cedar pollen is flying in spring especially at the northern of Nagano.
I have other reasons to think personally that the best season is the summer. It doesn’t rain much at my place in rainy season and is not really hot comparing other prefectures.
The view of the Japan alps, rice field and blue sky are so beautiful.
Additionally, it is the best season for hiking. Many hikers visit Nagano taking a long car trip from the night before their hiking.

Monday, 12 March 2018

Postcard from...Boston, Massachusetts

Dear Jim,

I have been enjoying staying in Boston for almost two weeks since 17th Feb.

Boston is an amazing city! You can enjoy sports, music, culture and academic atmosphere at the same time.

If you haven't, you must visit Boston!


My relationship with my phone - After reading

I use my mobile phone every day to see Instagram and twitter and to send text message like LINE. And I rarely talk on the phone to contact someone except for emergency case because the text message can be read at receiver’s convenient timing. Before I make phone calls, I always worry that she/he may be at silent space where talking on the mobile phone is not allowed like train, hospital, and she/he or her/his baby may stay in bed or may be busy now.It is my reason that I prefer sending text message to contact someone. When I contact hospitals, hair care salon, restaurant etc, I usually use my mobile phone, not fixed line.
I phone the most to my sister to do video chat with my nephew though he is 15 month olds and cannot say any words.
My mobile phone is always set in “Silent mode”, so vibration makes me find that I get a phone call. My ring tong has never been changed after I bought my mobile phone 3 years ago, but when I was high school or university students, I changed the ring tone downloaded by application called “Chaku-melo” and “Chaku-uta” every month.

Friday, 9 March 2018

A day in the life with Megumi - I got a mouth ulcer!

Hello!  I’ve worked hard everyday and drunk much.
One day, I drank whisky with soda.
I got drunk.
And I forgot soda, drank whisky straight.
I thought “!!!!!”.
I couldn’t drink it soon, kept it in my mouth a while.
And I was hungry, I ate green curry.
... I got a mouth ulcer.
It was so painful that I hadn’t be able to eat meals for three days.

It healed now.
I enjoy drinking time!

Monday, 5 March 2018

The place where I live

I live in Iwaki city. It's in the south of Fukushima prefecture in Touhoku region. It's located 150km south from Sendai,200km north from Tokyo. Population is 345,000 over. Iwaki has extensive area. It was the biggest city in Japan until 15 years ago.

There is the pacific Ocean in the east, Abukuma mountains in the west. Using rich nature, people make many kind of agricultural products and fishing industry. on the other hand, industrial production is developing. In the past, Mine development was major industries because there are many mines. We can see coal mine heritage as a historic building. And we can enjoy spa springing from coal mine at "Spa Resort Hawaiians". It's large sightseeing leisure facilities that opened in 1966. It's drawn in the movie "Hula girl".

There are roughly three kind of weather in Fukushima because mountains divides the prefecture into three area. Iwaki is on the seaside. In the summer,cool wind blows from the sea. In the winter, it doesn't snow because mountains are blocking the snow, so don't need statless tires. Sunshine hours are the longest in Touhoku region. It's very comfortable in all year.

There are some famous tourist spot. Many tourists visit to seaside area. There is a beautiful building aquarium and marine tower and big fishmarket where people can buy or enjoy seafoods. Fishing and surfing are also popular in seaside. Hot springs are popular to relax. Ocean view,mountain view, both good. "Spa Resort Hawaiians" is the most famous for tourist. Other famous spot as a religious building, Shiramizuamidado temple is a national treasure that related to Mr.Fujiwara of local ruling family in Touhoku region. It's a beautiful japanese style building. Not famous among tourist, but my recommendation is traditional performing arts. Fukushima has more than 800 kind of traditional performing arts at each area. we have more than1200 kind in showa 30's, but it is decreasing year by year.  The famous one of these is "Jangara" that performing in summer in Iwaki. It has religious meaning for us.

What I like best about Iwaki is beautiful seasonal scenery and seasonal local food. Seasoning Touhoku is the best for me. And I like talk Iwaki dialect with my friends, family or local people. When people talk in dialect, can be naturally relaxed and friendly. I also like to visit retro places and rustic country scenery because it's still many remained in Touhoku. I love nostalgic scenery.

Saturday, 3 March 2018

The Railway Children - Living near a railway line

If I live near a railway line, I would think about going on a trip often. When I see people on a train, I wonder where they will go and who they are. It is a kind of magic of train that people forget about their real life and dream to go to a new world, just for a while.

When I lived in California, there was a canyon near my house. And under the canyon there was a railway line. Sometimes I saw the trains running and my children were excited to see them. It was nice to see trains running through the canyon.

For people who live in a country, trains associate journey and admiration for the city. But, for the people who live in a city, trains are daily transportation. In the big city like Tokyo, train comes every 5 minutes. It must be very noisy to live near the railway line in a city. When I go to Tokyo by train, I can see many houses very near the railway line. I always think it will be very difficult for me to live near the railway line. Because of noise and light I feel restless and can't sleep well at night.

Posted for Yasumi

Friday, 2 March 2018

The Brontë Story - Jany Eyre explained

To editor of Smith and Elder pubishing company,

I'm so glad to give me your sinsire advice. Along with your advice, I've written "Jane Eyre" in 3 volumes.

In volume one, Jane Eyre lives with an unkind aunt, and then goes away to a school called Lowood. She has lived eight years in this strict school. Enduring a miserable and poor life in this school, she becomes a strong woman.

In volume two, she puts an advertisement and then she gets a job of governess in Thornfield House. The master in Thornfield house falls in love with Jane, and tries to get married, even though he already has a wife who has been mad. Jane runs away from her master.

In volume three, a rector in Moor House helps Jane Eyre while wondering Moors. Coincidentally a rector and his two sisters are Jane's cousins. For the first time, she can gets true family. At last, the story is happy ending.

Jane Eyre is an independant woman. She always says her thought by herself, even though in front of the nobles. She says a genuine affection to the man. This is sensational, but her life will move women in the world.

I want to change my name "Currer Bell" No one thinks women can write good books, so I would like to use man's name. My sister's books, "Agness Grey" and "Wuthering Heights" are dicided to publish from Thomas Cautley Nawby publishing company. Please think about my book "Jane Eyre"

Posted for Hiroko

Thursday, 1 March 2018

Martin Luther King - American Conscience Martin Luther King Jr. Dies at 39

Martin Luther King, an American Baptist minister as an activist fell caused a gunshot head wound on 4 April in Memphis. Just after 6 o’clock in the evening, he went out of his hotel room to fresh air. Suddenly there was the sound of a gun, his friends told. They ran outside and found him lying on the ground. An hour later Martin Luther King died in a Memphis hospital. He was thirty-nine years old.

He was born on 15 January 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia as a child of a minister in an Atlanta church. He became the most visible spokesperson and leader in the civil rights movement from 1954. He is best known for his role in the advancement of civil rights using the tactics of nonviolence and civil disobedience based on his Christian beliefs and inspired by nonviolent activism of Mahatma Gandhi. He led the 1955 Montgomery bus boycott and helped SCLC.

On October 14, 1964 King received the Nobel Peace Prize for combating racial inequality through nonviolent resistance. Recently he expanded his focus to include opposition towards poverty and the Vietnam war. There were several famous speeches were given. “ I have a dream” “ Beyond Vietnam” and so on. It is certain that we have lost a great person.

Posted for Naoko

Wednesday, 28 February 2018

Goldfish - Nazi treasure

It is said the number of art objects such as paintings, sculptures and art prints which Nazi looted from Jews and other countries is 600,000. The art works, Chagall, Matisse, Renoir, etc. which cost 1 billion were discovered in 2012 at the apartment of Munich. But over 100,000 artworks have not been discovered yet.

This book's author is Kouichi Fujita who worked in Berlin as a correspondent of Mainichi news company. He wrote this reportage in April 2011. He wrote about 'Room of amber ', 'Gogh collection ' and Vermeer. Hitler persisted in Vermeer. He wanted to open Linz Museum. But he couldn't do because the war situation became worse for Germany.

I was surprised that 'Astronomer' of Vermeer was looted by Nazi.So, there is Swastika which was symbol of Nazi on the back of 'Astronomer'. I saw it at Louvre Museum. It was a small but very wonderful painting. Most of the artworks which Nazi collected were changed to gold by the help of Swiss Bank and British Bank. Then they were sold and disappeared as the cost of war.I think some people have the artworks which were looted by Nazi. Perhaps they will not be discovered easily.

I hope that all artworks are discovered and can see them at the museums in many countries. The wonderful artworks are not Nazi treasure. They are our treasure forever.

Posted for Olga

Matsumoto restaurant review - Mori Soba

Mori-soba restaurant, Matsumoto.

This restaurant is in Matsumoto station, on the first floor. In the restaurant, there is dark furniture. It has a good atmosphere.

You can eat Shinshu soba and tempura, and drink local Japanese sake. You don't have to make a reservation.

You can see the cook making the soba noodles - it's very interesting. I like this restaurant. It's a little expensive but the food is delicious. I really recommend it.
Mari Soba, JR Matsumoto station

Posted for Yasue

Tuesday, 27 February 2018

The Phantom of the Opera - A letter from the Phantom

I loved flowers, trees, birds, and all beautiful things in the world.But I couldn`t see them under the sun. People was afraid me, pointed me, and said.``He is a monster``I hated all of people. But Christine was different. She wasn`t afraid me. I wanted to stay with her. When taught her songs, I was very happy. I wanted to walk with her under the sun if I can. But I couldn`t, so I never leave her. I decided to live under the Opera House with her. Her voice was too beautiful. She is a singer. She is a great singer. I wanted to popularize her voice. That was a mistake. I love her. I love her.

Posted for Misuzu

Monday, 26 February 2018

The Last Leaf and Other Stories - Detective's diary

I looked a happening in my presence. May, the sister`s older child, had closed the door of the strong-room. Then she had turned all the knobs. But the other child, Agatha, was inside the strong-room. Agatha is Annabel` sister. Nobody has chosen the numbers for the lock!Jimmy Valentine is now Ralph. D. Spencer. and he is going to marry the banker`s daughter, Annabel. Every family doesn`t know he was safe-cracker. Ralph looked a happening with Annabel`s family. and Ralph became Jimmy Valentine. Jimmy used special tools and cutting into the steel door. after that Jimmy pulled the big handle and the door opened. The child was safe, she was not hurt. Jimmy said to me "Arrest me" But I looked at Annabel and her family.They were all crying quietly. Jimmy helped Agatha and family. Family thanked for Jimmy. Family was confused the happening. So I decided not to arrest he.

Posted for Yoko

Sunday, 25 February 2018

Honnouji Incident - after reading of Rob Roy

Honnouji Incident is one of significant historical event in Japan which had a big impact.  It is an incident that Oda Nobunaga was attacked by one of his vassal, Akechi Mitsuhide at Honnouji temple in 1582.  Oda Nobunaga committed suicide and died.

Nobunaga was lived in the era called “the age of provincial wars”.  There was no centralized government in Japan and were a lot of lords all over Japan who governed their own territories.  His goal was to unify Japan.

Nobunaga changed the old system and rules.  Here is one of example.  There was a merchant association which privileged old merchants and didn’t accept new merchants.  The merchants had to pay tax when they sold goods in the market.  There was another tax system.  People had to pay tax when they went through checkpoints.  He scrapped the merchant association as well as those tax systems.  As a result, it brought a positive impact an economic development.

Mitsuhide knew Nobunaga took rest in Honnouji with his thirty servants and didn’t prepare for an attack.  Mitsuhide led his army to Honnouji and pushed Nobunaga to commit suicide.

After Nobunaga’s death, Ieyasu Tokugawa unified Japan in 1600. Honnouji Incident became one of triggers to make the centralized government known as Edo Bakufu.

Friday, 23 February 2018

Northanger Abbey - A letter to a loved one

My dear Eleanor,

Thank you for your letter. I’m so happy to hear that your father agreed our marriage. I’ve been afraid that your father might not permit us. I love Henry and I’ve wanted his father to permit our marriage. 

And You got engaged! Congratulations! Who is your fiancée? What is he like、very handsome, very rich and? Where does he live? When and where did you meet him? Now I have many questions to ask you! When we meet next time you have to tell me everything about your fiancée. We’re all for it that you and we are going to be married on the same day. Maybe we will have a most wonderful wedding ceremony. I am so excited now. You and I are going to be sisters. I hope we are always good friends forever!


Posted for Misako

Thursday, 22 February 2018

Picture Puzzle - Front page news

The sense of justice of Amy

Amy and Pete without the acquaintance solved a certain case. On Tuesday, Amy saw the big man, name’s Wallace talking to a man in the churchyard. Amy knew the other man. His name is Thurber, lawyer. Thurber is Zetter’s lawyer. Zetter is in prison. Wallace works at that prison. Amy heard Wallace talking to Thurber. Wallace said “Bring the money here at nine o’clock on Friday morning. After that, I’ll help Zetter.” And Amy went to the churchyard with camera on the day and took a picture of the two men. But Wallace saw Amy. Amy ran away to the shopping mall. Amy saw a young man, Pete in the mall. And Amy gave Pete the film out of the camera. Amy started running again. Wallace found out Amy. Amy was caught and was put in a bathroom. Pete who solved the puzzle fought with Wallace and saved Amy. Wallace and Thurber were caught.

Posted for Reiko

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Another sixth grader writes...

My favourite day of the week is Saturday. In the morning, I always go to the brass band. After brass band, I usually go to piano at my grandmother's house.

We're shopping at the department store. My mother was a salesperson in Tokyo. She likes nice clothes. I do too!

I'm going to my cousin's home by car. We always have fun. Last Sunday it was sunny. We were at my grandmother's house; if it's sunny, we want to go to AEON.

It's my sister's birthday on February 23rd.My mother & I are making a cake. She's cooking a chicken too. The party is at 7 o'clock. See you then!

Posted for Karen (13)

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Matsumoto restaurant review - Reizan

Restaurant review - Reizan

Reizan is a Chinese restaurant, in Kiri, Matsumoto.

It's a small restaurant, with only three tables plus five chairs at the counter. Two people work there, the owner, and his wife. The owner cooks the food. He is Japanese, but he makes traditional Chinese dishes.

It takes twenty minutes from Matsumoto station by car, and I recommend you make a reservation before you go there.

The most popular dish is friend noodles, but my favourite one is shrimp in "wantan" with a secret sauce. It's really delicious.

Posted for Riyo

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

1.      Sports to do in Matsumoto cheaply

If you use public sports facilities, you can do sports inexpensively. You can play tennis at public

tennis courts if you book in advance. And also, you can lift weights in some public gyms. There are some mallet golf courses which are near parks or camping sites. You can play there freely if you have equipment for it. If not, you can rent it for about 500 yen in certain parks.

2.      If you don’t mind spending a bit more

There are many traditional Japanese culture lessons, such as judo, karate or aikido, in a public gym or a private dojo. You can join in if you make a reservation and pay for it. You will have precious experiences.

      There are some ski areas in Matsumoto. You can ski and snowboard in winter. A lift pass costs around 5,000 yen for one day. You can rent outfits, skis and snowboards and boots,

3.      Don’t forget to …

You should clean up the place you used, it’s the Japanese way to use public spaces.

      It’s very cold in winter so you should be tolerant of the cold while you do sports.