Saturday, 30 March 2019

Japanese mums work too much - After reading of JAPAN

Japanese working mum is very busy every day, especially mum with kindergarten or elementary school age children is. Japanese women desire to share of child rearing and housework with their husband. But, their husbands do not go back home early and Japanese women need to all tasks by herself.
Japanese men are not fully aware that they should do all the child rearing and housework.
I personally think that it was caused that old Japanese family divided wife/husband or mother/father’s responsibility. Thus, a lot of older people and their son may become dependent on young mums. And young mums may think that mums should do everything right/perfectly as her mother did though young mums work.
Now Japan government proceeds with the Realization of Work Style Reform. I already realized my work style reform and changed my mind to taking care of my nephew and usually leave at the fixing time after finish my tasks. I strongly suggest all workers to prioritize and control the tasks efficiently before ever with aim of leaving at the fixed time and to take paid holiday more. The people can enjoy hobby and relax, and can do the child rearing and housework after the hours and during paid holiday. Please give Japanese mums rest more.

Wednesday, 27 March 2019

The place where I can most concentrate

When I was a child, I used to study in living room while my family was watching TV or talking. After growing up, when I was university student, I used to go to casual restaurant like a Gusto, Denny’s and do homework and study assignments with my friend or alone. Now I am an officer but still go to casual restaurant and do homework when I have it. My favorite place is Komeda coffee. I can concentrate to study while listening people talking or BGM of the restaurant. And it is also necessary to have some drinks when I concentrate doing something. If I have to think about something difficult or complicated, I always prepare a cup of coffee and start thinking. Sometimes I have some sweets if I felt tired. The best time of working is after 5pm when most people went home because anyone don’t ask or talk to me.

Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Postcard from Fukuoka

Dear Laura, Yukari and Hirokatsu

I'm on my holiday in Fukuoka and Nagasaki Prefecture, it's fine weather.

Today, I went to "Gunkanjima" in Nagasaki Prefecture. Known as Gunkanjima, Hashima is an island that once flourished in the coal industry. It was registered as a World Heritage site in 2015. It's a shame that what used to prosper is going away.

I can't say in a word, I felt I can't say anything. It's a place I want you to go to everyone. I'm enjoying everyday.

See you next week,


Sunday, 24 March 2019

My important days

The important three days for me are March 26th, September 20th and November 28th.

March 26th is my birthday.  It is coming soon!  Recently, my daughter is good at singing “Happy Birthday”, so I am looking forward to hearing her song.  In the meantime, I present my mother with a bouquet to give thanks to her on the date every year.  I am going to do that this year.

September 20th is my daughter’s birthday.  The due date was October 8th, but she was born 18 days earlier than the due date.  She was smaller than other babies, but she is now bigger (heavier, not taller) than other kids!

November 28th is my wedding anniversary.  My husband and I got married 3 years ago, but we have not done the special thing on the date.  We went to Hawaii for our honeymoon, so our dream is go to Hawaii again when our daughter became 20 years old.

Saturday, 23 March 2019

My longest trip

I went to Switzerland about ten days in winter with my family when I was a junior high school. Although I think that the most of sight sinners go to Switzerland in the warm part of the year, we went there to go skiing.

I had a terrible jet lag that I was dizzy and could not eat anything and stand up at the first day.
At the second day, I saw a very beautiful view that there was Matterhorn in front of my eyes when I opened the door of the hotel. I was very impressed and my condition was much better.

Ski area was huge and couldn't be compared to Japan. There is a net in Japan as a sign that we can't go out from ski slope. However, there was no net clearly in Switzerland and it was easy to got lost.
I was interested in abroad by this travel. 

Wednesday, 20 March 2019

Good evening to Jim sensei from Bangkok.
I wore a  coat yesterday and I am now wearing short sleeve shirt.
People serve me hot tea with lots of sugar, and feed me extraordinary spicy food!
My stomach burns and feel so hot outside, that’s for sure.
But weirdly I stop sweating while and little after having a hot cup of tea!!

Anyways, I arrived Bangkok at 5:30 and I am still working.
Nice cute reserved seat for people in need relaxes me. Hot but warm country.

Will send you another from Manila next week.


Friday, 15 March 2019

The Shinano River

Japanese Crested Ibis
The River Shinano is in Japan.

It's the longest river in Japan. It's about 367 kilometers long. It has more than 1,100 species of plant and fifty-five fish. Ducks, Cranes and Ibis live on the River Shinano.

People need the river because it produces 2,618 megawatts of hydroelectric power.

By Ayumi

Postcard from Hong Kong

Dear Laura, Yukari, Chikako,

I'm coming to Hong Kong now. It's a bit cold in the rain today. I will go to Shenzhen in China now!

I am looking forward to see you next week.

PS. I did my homework!! :)


Thursday, 14 March 2019

Postcard from...Chicago, Illinois, USA

Sweet Home Chicago, using Touchnote
Hi Jim sensei,

I have been in Chicago for a week for business meetings. It is windy and extremely cold. -10 degrees C was the highest temperature today. However, Unique heat-tech T-shirts kept me warm in the cold air. To enjoy this city, I recommend visiting during the summer.

Best regards,


Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Days at Daiichi

When I found out I was going to be teaching a class of teenagers I was terrified. My own memories of high school started flashing before my eyes. A class of girls, talking over the teacher and using our phones to text, shop, and do anything but schoolwork, but as soon as I set foot in the school I realised that my high school experience was very different to that of the students in the class that I was teaching.

Although the separation of girls and boys was still very clear, here it was by choice rather than the fact that the boys went to a different school across the road. Instead of groups of desks around the room, they were in uniform single file lines. Rather than chatting happily to each other and yelling out answers, you could barely drag an answer out of them without picking on them one by one, and the biggest difference; everyone has to hand in their phones to their homeroom teacher at the start of the day - a rule that couldn’t even be broken for educational use on the final day of school.

I walked into the class for the first time in November absolutely terrified but soon realised that my preconceived idea of what was to come couldn’t be further from reality. School in Japan is incredibly different to what it was back home, but the class welcomed me with open arms, just as they would’ve at home; and for that, I am so grateful. Thank you and good luck with your final year of school everybody!

Monday, 11 March 2019

Spring's coming!

Despite the gloomy days that Matsumoto has been having recently, we still believe that Spring is on its way. To celebrate, we have spent the last week pulling, planting, and watering this year's new plants! Thank you to all of our little helpers who have helped us start to plant the seeds to make what will be some very colourful seasons.

Friday, 8 March 2019

Ghost in the Garden

Yuki is twelve years old girl. Recently she moved to her grandfather’s house. It’s a big house. And there is a bigger house in the neighbourhood. It has a large garden and there were a lot of trees and plants.

One night she was looked around the garden out of her room’s window. It was dark but the crescent moon emitted dim light. She saw a white shape under a big tree. It was moving slowly. Yuki was very surprised and frightened. “What’s that?” white silhouette moved. Is that happen to be a ghost?

Next night Yuki looked around the garden, she didn’t see it. “Was the silhouette an illusion?”. A week later Yuki saw it again. It was moving. She went downstairs and told to her grandmother that she saw a ghost. Her grandma laughed. “OK, you didn’t know. I have to tell about it. It is a girl. She is fourteen. She has a problem. She can’t move under the sun ray. She only move at night.” Yuki felt relieved, and thought I could be her friend someday.

Posted for Misako.

Thursday, 7 March 2019

Travel to the Stars

I am Kogi Hirabayashi. I’m Japanese. I’m high school student, 17 years old. I live in Nagano prefecture, the place is countryside. I love space and watch the stars. I can see beautiful stars sometimes. It is special time for me.
Our country is no building and no bright lights. Only mountains. So the stars are especially beautiful. I have one younger sister, Miho. When I watched the stars, Miko certainly beside me. I want to become an astronaut. A trip on a spaceship is excited for me. I like to study galaxy and astronomy. Moho likes UFO stories. She wants to read some UFO books. The day was especially bright at night. The stars were all over the sky. I hope to watch a meteor stream and Miho hopes to appear UFO. We are both dreamer. What happen tonight?

Posted for Yoko.

Wednesday, 6 March 2019

The Monster Party

150 years ago, Mr Frankenstein lived in the small house in Switzerland. But he was very boring in this town. He couldn’t go outside in daytime. He could only walk at night time. One night he saw a strange black coat man. He was Mr Dracura. He was tired of Switzerland too!
So they decided to move another country. They went to Holland.
Ride a ship, they thought it will go to England. But they go to East Island Japan. They didn’t know that, they got off the ship midnight, and went to the mountain. They saw some red monsters. They were very surprised and went down the mountain, hiding in the forest daytime. The red monster called Oni were surprised too. They talked about last night monsters with Hitotsumekazo and drunk sake. They fell asleep.

Midnight, Mr Stein and Mr Dracura went to mountain again. They saw many sleeping monsters. They had many bottles with their hands. Mr Frankenstein and Mr Dracura were scared but a nice smell came from the bottles. They couldn’t stand, they drunk sake. That’s wonderful, excellent! Suddenly Oni and Hitotsumekozou got up. Both monsters surprised each other, but Mr Dracura and Mr Frankenstein gave them their beer an wine. Both could not understand their language, but they didn’t need worlds they love alcohol! Alcohol make friends all over the monsters that night, people heard strange voices from the mountains.

Posted for Misuzu.

Tuesday, 5 March 2019

Museums in Matsumoto

Image result for miami police file black cat cidebThere is a Matsumoto City Museum in Matsumoto city. There is a big green statue in front of it, you can find it easy. It was made by Yayoi Kusama. She was famous modern artist.

There are many her`s artifacts, statue, objects,and pictuers. She likes pumpkin motive and dots. Many years ago, I went to the museum, and watched them. I felt her arts were very strange. It was not so beautiful. But many people like her art. About 8 years ago, our family went to Paris, and we looked her art at Louis Vuitton`s window. It collaborated with her. It wasn`t beautiful, but very modern. Her exhbition is very popular all over the world. There are red dots bus in Matsumoto city, it was her idea.

Posted for Misuzu.

Postcard from Silk Road - After reading

Postcard I
Hi, I passed Pamirs which are located on high mountains 2 days before and am taking a day-off of long journey in a village at the foot of the mountain. The Journey in high mountains area were difficult for us to walk and to cook things because it is in thin air.
But, we saw unusual sheep there with very long, round horns. I have never seen that. I am not good at drawing, but please see my drawing of the unusual sheep.
On March 02, we start our journey to China again. I will send another postcard later.
I’m sad that I cannot be with you, but I am look forward to talking you about this journey when I am back to Venice. Of course, I promise you to bring a lot of souvenirs!
Postcard II
Hi, I am staying in Kinsai. I often remember Venice when I visit Kinsai because it is a large city on the water like Venice. The people in Kinsai is clever and kind and they are working for silk cloth, other made things of silver or gold. There are 12,000 bridges and some very high bridges which big ships can easily go under the high bridges.
What I interested in here is bath houses. There are the hundreds of bath houses in Kinsai and people here usually take three times a month.  They are always giving visitors like us best service in bath house and always prepared us warm water.
I want to bring you here to know Kinsai and people in Kinsai someday. I will stay here for trading for a while and will send another postcard later.
Postcard III
Hi, I am in Cipangu. Cipangu is a group of islands and is located in the east of the Khan’s empire. I heard before from Khan that these islands were rich in gold and had a large palace with floors and windows of gold.
When a warm and a sunny season is closing, I saw trees with beautiful flowers called Sakura in Cipangu. Some trees have white flowers and others have pink flowers. We could enjoy Sakura trees for long period because these are fully in bloom for 1-2 weeks.
Our trading in Cipangu is going well and will be finished within a few months. Once our trading is completed, I will be back to Venice. I am very happy to see you again and look forward to talking you about this journey.

Postcard from....Bangkok, Thailand

Hello, Jim

I'm in Bangkok, Thailand.

I'm doing very well!

I enjoyed shopping at one of the biggest malls in Bangkok. Again, I've found that Thai is a country of "smile".

From Taka

Monday, 4 March 2019

Tennis Talents

Image result for alien alert in seattle black cat cidebI`m Yoko. I`m 63 years old. Now my hobby is playing tennis. When I was forties I was buzy to child care and working office everyday. So I have no hobby. A friend invited me "Let`s go to tennis school together. It is city-run. It is cheap!" That was starting to my pleasure.

I could make new friends for tennis. Because playing tennis could not only one. It was necessary to belong a group. Now I`m playing tennis twice a week indoors. Sweat is good for my physical condition. But I had some practical problems. Playing skill could not advanced! I gave up! and I changed my mind. It`s better to enjoy. So we are able to do for all ages. I`m enjoying to play a game of tennis now.

Posted for Yoko.

No snow in Nozawa

Dear Jim,

How are you? I enjoyed the Christmas holiday.

It was a fantastic time, although the weather wasn't so good. I went to Nozawa Onsen for skiing and hot spring with my family. It was raining and sometimes snowing. There wasn't enough snow for skiing, so we didn't buy a one day ticket, got some single tickets because some lifts didn't work. Anyway, we didn't really enjoy skiing. However, we enjoyed hot spring.

Did you know Nozawa Onsen is free? There are several free places, although the spaces are small. That spring is famous for making the skin beautiful.

By the way, did you enjoy the Christmas & New Year's holiday? Write soon, and tell me about it!

from Kazumi

Sunday, 3 March 2019

Typical New Year celebrations in Japan

Children goes back to hometown and spend New Year with family. Japanese cleans their house not to carry dirt over next year.
Some families watch the TV waiting for New Year and some families wear kimono and go to shrine/temple to pray.

I eat traditional New Year’s foods that have good keeping quality, not to cook and take a rest. There are good/lucky meanings for each foods such as health, long life and luck. For example, shrimp curls up when boiled and it looks like elderly people with a bent back. It is something like wish for long life. I have liked datemaki and kurikinton since I was child because it is very sweat. They are in the picture above.

I put New Year’s ornaments to an entrance of my house and round rice cake with my wishes. Finally, adult gives their relative’s children money.

Cambridge English Qualification: Explaining results

Saturday, 2 March 2019

Selfies & personal intros - digital/analog blending

Our digital natives could compose their selfies, add filters, bling themselves up and save their work in next to no time (teaching each other quick tips & offering fashion advice!) using the iOS app "Snow".
The actual writing task took longer, thinking about personal info that we can express as we start our new text book (OUP's Everybody Up 3).

Love this class - motoring along in the fast lane with the roof down. Super cool, obviously cute, and inspiring the teacher to try even better ways to prove they Can Do!

Friday, 1 March 2019

Ayumi's favourite flying animal

It's a bird. It flies. It is about forty-five centimetres tall. It has feathers. It's feathers are soft. It can fly quietly. It has big eyes. It can hunt mice at night. I like this owl because it is beautiful and cool. I saw an owl at school in Matsumoto.


A stitch in time - a New Year's letter

Dear Jim,

How are you? You must have had a nice holiday in Australia!

I have a nice new year's holiday at home as well. My daughter and my brother came back from Tokyo with their family. My granddaughter is four and my grandson is two. They are very cute. However, they are very noisy. We have a lively table every night, although I'm very tired. Anyway, they go back to Tokyo soon.

By the way, I have to sew my restaurant's tablecloths during the holiday. I like sewing, although I feel a little bit blue thinking about so many things to do. Anyway, I'm looking forward to seeing your pictures you take in Australia. Have a fantastic holiday!!

All the best!