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A blog about learning and teaching Japanese, walking Japan, and sometimes about kit-kats.
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明けましておめでとうございます！ Happy New Year!
Did you make any New Year's Resolutions this year?
January is a really good time to think about goals for the year ahead. Apart from anything else, it's cold! And it's nice to be inside making plans.
Here are my New Year's Resolutions for 2018:
1) blog once a week
This one is easy (I hope!) and a continuation of last year.
In 2017 I aimed to publish a blog post a week. I actually did 26, which is one a fortnight.
That's not bad, but I definitely want to beat that in 2018.
2) play more games
In class, I mean. I want to work on making classes more fun, and one easy way to do that is more games.
↓ My lovely students playing fukuwarai ("Lucky Laugh") game
When we laugh together, we learn together.
(Cheesy but true).
3) read every day
This is a personal one. Last year I tried to read more Japanese fiction, and kind of failed.
I did find, though, that once I actually start reading I'm ok. It's the getting started that's the tricky part.
This year, I'm going to read some Japanese fiction every day, and keep a note in my 5-year diary when I've done it.
(16 days in, this is going pretty well.)
4) go to more teaching events
This year, I'm planning to go to more Japanese teaching and education-related events in London.
I went to a couple recently - a Japanese grammar teaching workshop at SOAS, and a bunch of seminars at the Language Show London.
I found it super helpful to reflect on my teaching practice and discuss ideas with other teachers and linguists.
I definitely want to go to more events like this in 2018.
...and it's a good excuse to go to London for the day too.
5) track these goals
Waiting until the end of the year to see how your goals are going doesn't really work.
In 2017, I actually completely forgot about one of my resolutions (to watch more drama in class). I'm going to avoid that this time by pinning them above my desk.
I'd love to know what New Year's Resolutions you made. Let me know in the comments!
明けましておめでとうございます！Happy New Year!
新年の抱負はありますか。Have you made any New Year's Resolutions?
My good friend Karli of designosaur (the brilliant people who make all those dinosaur necklaces I wear to class) writes a new year's post every year, and I always find it super inspiring. I don't always make resolutions, but this year I have loads and I'd like to share some of them with you!
1. blog more
This one should be easy. I like writing this blog, but it's always bottom of my to-do list! Karli's suggestion was to make a regular schedule and stick to it, so I'll try that.
2. finish some books
I often tell people that I read a lot of Japanese books, but actually what I do is start reading a lot of Japanese books. Then find a new one, get distracted and start the new one. That's good for variety, but not very satisfying.
I'm going to try and read one book at a time (currently reading マチルダは小さな大天才) and not start any new books until I finish!
3. watch more drama...with my students
I love J-drama and it's a great way to listen to everyday spoken Japanese - especially if the programme is centred around a family or group of friends. This year I'm hoping to use some drama clips in class. I haven't quite worked out the details yet but I think it'll be a lot of fun.
I'm currently watching Beautiful Rain （ビューティフルレイン） which is adorable and very tear-jerky. Have you seen it?
4. have more parties
We had a great time at the first annual Step Up Japanese christmas party, and one of my goals for 2017 is to have more school events like this. I've got a little list in mind, but if you have a suggestion please let me know!
5. be reflective
This one is less of a resolution and more of a humblebrag.
Some days I skip home from class because everything went swimmingly. Other times I'm left thinking how I could have explained something better / given you more chances to speak Japanese / had a good answer to your question on the spot instead of telling you I'll look it up.
My point is, it's good to be reflective - and not just because you won't get knocked off your bike. I really, really want to keep improving and bring you bigger and better things in 2017!