Thursday, 30 October 2008
Wednesday, 29 October 2008
I strongly recommend you don't read my comments before your reading this book, because I have mentioned who is murderer in it. :-)
Q6: In Scotland, the punishment for murder is life imprisonment - which means at least fifteen years in prison. Do you think this is the right punishment?
Except in this case, I think the life imprisonment is too light for ****** *******. Because She has killed two university students to get their researches for herself. I can't find grounds for extenuating circumstances. In Japan, the punishment for murder is life imprisonment or death sentences. It's very difficult to say which is the right punishment, but I think we should judge the punishment in a comprehensive manner. e.g. background, reason, modus operandi and etc.
Tuesday, 28 October 2008
After reading No.1: “What do you think happens to Mark Latto and Sylvia Koning next?”
Mark returned to UK once, and continued Parkinson's disease research during six months. Sylvia kept researching the same disease which was done by Spencer in California. To take time to research alone, Sylvia asked for help to Mark. Mark moved to California for her invitation and they kept researching the disease. At last the research reached at Spencer's level. The patients who had Parkinson's disease in the world were pleased that they announced the result of their research.
Mark and Sylvia lived together by continuing this research, he got on with her, and they will get married. It’s a happy end.
Monday, 27 October 2008
The report of the travel is upload.
To the next. From here, it's my favorite time.
For two days,People drank a lot of the Japanese Sake, and carried on the "Danjiri". and they hardly sleeps. It's very hard and crazy!
http://www.danjiri.tv/ More infomation is in this URL.
After Reading No.1: Here is an interview between Wangari Maathai and a reporter.
Reporter: What happened to the rainforests in Kenya? Wangari Maathai: Without the trees, we get less rain, and the weather gets hotter. Then life gets very difficult for the rainforest people.
Rep: And what changes has that made? WM: Once there were lots of rainforests, but now 90 per cent of them have gone.
Rep: So you decided to help them. What did you do? WM: I planted my first trees in 1977. That was the beginning of the Green Belt Movement.
Rep: What new things are you doing now? WM: Now I am starting some new coffee plantations. They use no chemicals, so they do not damage the forests.And tourists can come to spend their holidays with us, planting trees.
Rep: And how many has the movement planted now? WM: 30 million - and now other African countries have organizatiions like ours too.
Rep: Finally, you are a famous person now. What would you like to say to the people of the world? WM: I think that every body in the world must work to help the earth - every one of us.
Sunday, 26 October 2008
But... it was hard to me :-P
After reading No4. "What was life like for young people in Wales in 1945?"
The life for young people in Wales in 1945 was not happy. They either worked underground at the village's coal mine for eight hours a day, five days a week, or they didn't work at all. That was very dangerous and hard life, or very boring life. That was all. But it was better than being soldier and fighting foreign country. This was the most dangerous and meaningless life, I think.
At a weekend, young people sometime went to dancing or watching a film. This was their only pleasure, I think.
It remains one of the most memorable events in my life, and I will be forever indebted to Charlie Crockford & Linton Higginbotham for dragging me first all the way to Florida and to a cheap motel in Cocoa Beach...and then for them managing to drag me to a perimeter fence of the Kennedy Space Center at first light the next morning, after we'd driven all night from (sweet home) North Carolina. And what did I see?
I guess most people these days think Bud Lightyear/Tom Hanks have both been to the moon. Must admit, Apollo 13 is a favourite movie of mine. So is The Right Stuff. I am old enough to remember blurry black & white pictures of men on the moon. Of my childhood I remember Nixon a snake, Ian Paisley worse, huey choppers in Vietnam.
My favourite TV show was Star Trek - to boldly go...Even now I do enjoy a stolen episode of Stargate , a re-run of any Star Trek, or one of the new Space 1999 episodes.
I loved this book. I knew bits and pieces, as a child of the Apollo generation I have the memory built into me. What happened to man's burning desire to explore? When did we chicken out? The remarkable people of this story never did - reading of the later Apollo missions makes it obvious how close we - MANKIND - were to taking the next big step as well. Of course it costs money to put missions & men into space. Of course it is dangerous (life is dangerous. Never had an accident?)
Putting our species into space is a fantastic investment. Selfishly, the technological return is guaranteed. My mum loved her first Teflon frying pan - it was from NASA. I remember her saying that. I remember washing that pan and also thanking NASA. Often.
Why on Earth aren't we exploring space better? Witnessing a space shuttle take off was an amazing thing to behold. Just like this book, which takes you right there with the astronauts, it was a kick in the guts when the sonic boom hit us, miles away. My reaction then was to leap up and down trying to escape Earth's gravity myself...a day later I was jammed in Miami between hookers fighting over a stolen TV and a hurricane, trying to get to Hemingway's Chair in the Keys!
Loved this book. Knew the story but couldn't stop turning the pages...
Saturday, 25 October 2008
Matt will be teaching most of our Saturday classes for us; we are hoping he'll be able to do so for a good while. Like Yuki & I, Matt also has a young child to look after. Unlike Jim, Matt can actually speak Japanese. However, Matt is an Aussie...
Matt has already met our Saturday roll-call of stars - here he is with Ayako and Mai-chan. Ayako is deaf, which is why she's covering her eye! (Actually, it was funny; these two are old-time buddies but studying independently. They wanted to gossip about their new teacher but couldn't - Matt & I were listening. What did they do? Bloody sign language!)
Saturday at Luna - looks good!
Friday, 24 October 2008
Congratulations Shizue, on passing First Certificate! (Here is Luna's Local Secretary Yuki presenting Shizue with her certificate.)
Shizue spends every other Friday teaching me. She knows more about English Literature than I ever will, and her questions about grammar are truly frightening! She is the worst student I know for doing homework - I don't think she has ever actually done everything I asked her to...but that doesn't matter because she has passed FCE. She is the only Japanese English teacher I know that has managed to do that. Most, in my experience, would be badly shown up.
Why isn't there some universal measure of English language skills/requirement for English teachers in this country? To be fair, this should include native speakers too - just because you grow up speaking a language doesn't make you an expert, let alone a teacher. And yet Nagano prefecture wastes millions upon millions of taxpayers' yen on unqualified imports - working alongside mostly less than competent English-langauge users.
Do I know what I am talking about? Sadly, yes, I do. Do I have any useful suggestions? Again, yes I do...
Well done Shizue: shining example of what teachers should be capable of in this country. Proud of you.
Oh, and by the way, Shizue will be examining Young Learners for us on Sunday!
Thursday, 23 October 2008
If you just sit there & don't make any English happen, then you'd be entitled to ask for your money back, that's for sure. However, I'm allergic to refunds!
Aim of this class was some very early prep for the YLE Starters speaking test - these lads are too inexperienced to have a bash at that just yet - and to develop some co-operation/reduce snatching.
Method? Well, kind of made up as we went, because it was pretty tough to predict how the boys would respond to this fairly free activity. They actually surprised me in that they found it very hard at first to "see" the picture. So they started asking me simple questions - pointing at the blank next space in the carpet & asking me "What's this?" !
Once we had the frame sorted out, they were off to the races & needed calming down a bit - time for instructions like "Don't walk on it" and "Let him put it there" etc. I like this puzzle because the bonus baggy has mini cards of all the main vocabulary. First we matched, then some dictation (no writing) - "Put the duck on the tent" and so on.
Do they know all the words? No way. I haven't taught them prepositions either...all about context and experimentation. Trying is not the same as being wrong a lot! They were checking their ideas with each other a lot as we got on with it, and quickly coming to conclusions about meanings & teaching themselves - much better way to learn than being 'told' by me!
As we went, other questions were obvious - asking about colours, shapes, number; "Have you got a ...?" or "Do you like ...?" We had a ball, and truly milked this excellent resource for all it was worth. Only problem is, I have only got the one puzzle!
Tuesday, 21 October 2008
I imagine she is slim and good figure woman. She usually wears suits with tight skirt and white shirt while working, and wears slim jeans and sweater or jacket in her private time.
Friday, 10 October 2008
Hijiri looked really excited and was the centre of attention, as he got presents, cards, and a lovely cake with a little candle on it for him to blow out. To be honest, Hijiri is always the centre of attention when he comes to work with his mummy - we can usually hear him chirping away, pointing at things and generally trying to put the whole office in his mouth!
A year ago Maki was holding the fort for us, and we were struggling up a really steep hill with our first Cambridge exam sessions in Tokyo, handling entries and enquiries from all over the country, etc. We're doing that again now, but thank goodness we actually know what to expect & were able to prepare properly first.
Hijiri brightens up everyone's day at Luna; he's already on the verge of walking by himself, so we'll have to be extra careful not to trip over him. We love seeing him here, and are delighted to eb interrupted by his singing & pointing!
Congratulations Yuki & Taka - you've got a lovely little boy on your hands - and happy birthday Hijiri....ONE already!
Thursday, 9 October 2008
As you may remember, I celebrated my '23 again!' birthday a few weeks ago. I was overwhelmed by wishes and seemed to celebrate the whole week long! So I just want to say a big THANK YOU! to everyone who remembered and who wished me a Happy Birthday.
And just to show you how spoilt I was - here are a few of the cards that my students made for me.. aren't they beautiful!!
Monday, 6 October 2008
As you know, about six weeks ago we were wrapped in blue scaffolding. At the weekend we emerged like a beautiful new butterfly from a cocoon! You can see from the picture that our MK Building is now milk chocolate colour - a massive improvement on the old, dreary & decayed-looking grey we were before.
You will also clearly see that our windows are CLEAN at last! Where I come from, being told you have dirty windows is a major insult...and it has been bothering us for ages that our windows were filthy. Jim dared the scaffolding and gave them a jolly good scrubbing - Tana & Yuki are charged with doing the safer inside job.
Our satellite antenna went up today, but some little rotter has broken the power switch on our decoder box. The electrician said he'd fix it and sort it out tomorrow. with a bit of luck, we'll be able to start showing our regular channels again - BBC News, Discovery Channel and maybe the Cartoon Network if asked nicely enough!
We have rearranged the office while we were being redecorated outside. We've done our best to become wireless; we also now offer students free access to the internet with a computer in the main room. Please take advantage of this to access your favourite websites, check stuff out on Google or Youtube, post on the blog etc.
Lastly, we've put a crib in the main room, as a number of our students have very little younger brothers and sisters (this is Kaede's little sister). Hijiri is already starting to toddle & no longer needs it. Please be gentle with both (Hijiri and the crib!)
Oh! I nearly forgot. The winner of our competition - big fanfare - with two tickets to see Manchester United et al play in the Toyota Cup in Tokyo on Dec. 21st is - more fanfare - NOBODY. Unfortunately, absolutely nobody suggested "chocolate, "cafe au lait", or anything else brownish to win. Too bad! Better luck with the next competition!
Thursday, 2 October 2008
You can now subscribe easily - a couple of clicks
You can "follow" the blog - fan club in the making!
Find them on the right hand side - scroll down a bit and click!
If you wish to attend you need to pre-register, which we will help you do (NB This is not a Luna event!)
Thought this might interest some of you.
センター・オブ・イングリッシュ・スタディーズ/ Centre of English Studies
エメラルド・カルチュラル・インスティテュート/ Emerald Cultural Institute
インターナショナル・ハウス・ダブリン/ International House Dublin
ランゲージ・スクール・アイルランド/ Language College Ireland
ランゲージ・ハウス・スクール・オブ・イングリッシュ/ The Language House School of English
マーケティング・イングリッシュ・イン・アイルランド/ Marketing English in Ireland