ブライトンの日本語教室で手伝ってくれる素晴らしいボランティアの皆さん

ブライトンの日本語教室で手伝ってくれる素晴らしいボランティアの皆さん

ブライトン近郊に住んでいる日本人から「ステップアップジャパニーズでボランティアできますか?」というメールを時々いただきます。

こういうメールをいただいて、私は毎回とても嬉しく思います。近くに住んでいる日本人が私の日本語教室を見つけて、しかも手伝いに行きたいと思ってくださることは、とてもありがたいと思います。

今年度、日本人のボランティアは授業に手伝いに来てくださっただけではなく、イベントやワークショップも一緒に開くことができました。

イギリスのボランティア・ウィーク(Volunteers’ Week)をご存知ですか。

Read More

A Japan Pub Quiz!

A Japan Pub Quiz!

I wrote a little bit about my Japanese volunteers who come to help out at class and with events and workshops.

But I’m also helped enormously at Step Up Japanese by my students, who organise events, give me great ideas, and share helpful feedback on how to make class better.

Read More

Our Fantastic Volunteers

Our Fantastic Volunteers

Sometimes, Japanese people write and ask if they can volunteer at Step Up Japanese.

I’m always very happy that Japanese people in Brighton and Hove have found my school and want to visit and help out.

This year, a number of Japanese volunteers have helped out in class and with events and workshops.

This Volunteers Week, I’d like to say a big thank you to my 2018-19 volunteers!

Read More

I Tried to Speak Japanese Every Day for a Month (Without Being in Japan)

 I Tried to Speak Japanese Every Day for a Month (Without Being in Japan)

Many people believe you need to live abroad to get speaking practice in a foreign language, but this isn’t true.

Similarly, people often assume that if you in Japan, like I did, you’ll pick up the language easily. But that’s not necessarily true either.

If you speak English, it’s possible - indeed easy - to live in another country for years and not become fluent in the language.

I didn't make any year-long New Years’ Resolutions this year. Instead, I decided to set myself some monthly language-related challenges. I’ll decide them as the year goes on, and I’ll probably do one every other month.

In January, I decided to speak Japanese every day for a month.

Read More

Are Loanwords "Real" Japanese?

Are Loanwords "Real" Japanese?

Shortly after I started studying Japanese at university, I got an email from a friend in Sweden:

“How’s it going? Learned any more ‘Japanese words’ like camera and video?”

I’d copy-pasted her some of the "new words" from my textbook. There was a list of them - words like kamera (camera) and rajio (radio)…

I felt like I was cheating. These aren’t Japanese words!

Or are they?

Read More

"I treasure this pen case"

"I treasure this pen case"

“I treasure this mechanical pencil.”

(Applause)

One of the interesting things about working as an Assistant Language Teacher (ALT) in Japan is that you get to see the kind of English taught in Japanese state schools.

Sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s bad; but in my opinion it’s always interesting, and you’re always learning something …

Read More