TAB 多読 -tadoku and beyond!-  

いっぱい読んでたっぷり聞けば、英語はかって出てきます!

  

2013/11/28

If you don't call it absurd, then what can it be the one?

Let me excuse a bit before I write today's post. I'm quite likely to do lots of Dokuzetsu now, so if you don't want to spend your precious time reading my rants and raves, please stay away and read a book or watch a drama for your learning English...

I'm almost done with my second ebook, so I should be feeling happy now, but I can't stop feeling gloomy when I come across such an absurd, ridiculously unreasonable news one after another about EFL education in Japan.

Why? Why does it has to be that complicated issues? It's just about becoming a user of English that parents, teachers and students are talking about. Then, what on earth do we need to spend about $6,000,000.00 from tax money every year to send high school English teachers in Tokyo abroad and let them study how to teach English and experience a homestay *for free*? Use your own money and get real!, or teachers won't learn anything.
   

To begin with, people should realize by now that no matter what kind of trainings or programs the government implements to train Japanese English teachers, the number of Japanese teachers who can use English fluently and effectively will never ever increase; because once people become a competent user of English, there is no strong reason for them to remain as a teacher of English, unless their dream job is teaching. Much more thrilling and highly compensated jobs must be waiting for them by then.


So there is close to nil chance for Japanese schools to have good competent Japanese teachers of English. Then what can we do?


It's simple. We study English at junior high school. That's enough. Let go of a English test off the entrance examination to university. Three years of studying basic English is suffice. If you want to learn more, then you should do whatever you want by yourself. There are tons of materials and opportunities on the Net that you can use and learn English with just a small amount of money. If you're willing to spend $100.00 a month, then I'm sure you can be a fluent user of English in less than several years.

It's simple. You read, listen to, speak, and write in English as much as possible. That's all. Look for those materials that you can't help reading or listening, and your motivation won't be waned and you'll become fluent before you realize it.


There seems to be oh so many people in English teaching business and education in Japan that they're caught up with the idea that English is very difficult for Japanese and English can't be properly used unless people study very very hard. (Or they could be intentionally spreading those ideas.) For some Japanese teachers, sad to say, it's almost like a sin to acquire English skills by doing pleasure reading or enjoying your pastime while using English.

For example, this widely know teacher in some private high school reports in his blog that some student got a very good result in tests after rote-memorizing almost all the words in HIS word-book, and also reading aloud *each* article in HIS textbook *twenty* times. What the heck does he want to tell us? What makes him so happy about this result?

If you rote-memorize lots of words and read again and again and again English sentences, then it's by far the more surprising if you failed to score high... It's just the student was extremely diligent, hard-working and smart, so he got the good score. It doesn't prove anything like HIS textbooks are superb.... Whatever materials the student uses, he sure will be good at English.

Besides, if I were his teacher, I definitely recommend him to read lots of different articles on the net or to read books which he's eager to, and tell him not to use any word-book or try to memorize new words intentionally, let alone to memorize with Japanese translation. The more he reads, the bigger his vocabulary will be without doing anything tough or robotic like rote-memorization. He'll be able to enjoy a variety of topics while reading English books, and his curiosity or motivation should have been stimulated. His knowledge or passion would be nourished much much better by reading various books than reading the same articles *twenty* times, right?


It was not the only story which drained me totally today. I happened to find this announcement in twitter and just couldn't stop rumbling. What the hell is going on around the TOEIC business? A learning course for becoming a coach of TOEIC for $1500.00. Here is another one and it seems to be a joined lecture of the newspaper company and an English conversation school...

Well, I know both industries are now at the verge of falling down. The development of technology doesn't necessarily work for the good of both industries; for newspaper companies, there is no crucial reason to keep making physical newspapers, also for physical English conversation schools, there is little advantage for them to do business when online conversation schools are much more reasonable and convenient for learners.

Anyway, there are lots of effective and enjoyable ways of learning English and I think there are many people who acquired English skills by those approaches, so if you're looking for a way to be a good user, then try to find someone around you and ask for advice rather listening to the nonsense of teachers and people in the business. Am I not right??   

2013/11/21

Simple English Videosのオーナーさんと。。。

ブログの更新回数が減っていますが。。。
今は第二弾ebook計画が進行中でして、大まかなところは出来上がりました。
あとは、詰の作業です。

というわけで、今日は本に掲載するネットサイトのオーナーさんに、
サイトの画像を使う許可をもらおうと思って、twitterで確認を取ろうとしました。

すると、すぐに反応があって、
skypeIDはあるの?と聞かれ、
あるよ、と返事をしたら、
skypeにコンタクトが来て!?
アメリカに住むオーナーさんと、いきなりおしゃべりと相成りました。
いやあ〜これがネット時代のスピードってやつですね。

ebookにものせましたが、その使えるサイトは Simple English Videosです。
うちでお世話している高校生がよく利用しています。
サイトは黒い背景なので、怪しいサイトみたいな雰囲気がありますけど、
制作しているのは、日本でも教職経験のあるイギリス人の先生です。
ぜひ試して、感想があればツイッターでメッセージを送ると喜ばれますよ^^。

2013/11/15

英語を使うと『非』英語圏にもつながるんだよ

オレ流さんのブログで話題になっているを見ても、
朝日新聞で始まったコラムを読んでも、
英語教育のことを語る日本の教授様や発言力のある方って、
いったい何年前の過去に生きていらっしゃるんですか?
というぐらい、時代についてこれていないような気がします。

その原因は、結局のところ、
社会的地位の高いところにいる人ほど、生活がかかている人ほど(カリスマ教師・講師さんとか)、
その地位を、ビジネスを、守らなければならないが故に、
「自分自身」の「英語コンプレックス」、そこに向き合おうとしない、できない、
からではないのか。

保身(英語の特殊な使い方はできても、フツーに使うことはできないことをバレないようにすること)がまず一番にきてしまって、
そのために、真実がわかっているのにもかかわらず、そこは見ないようにする。
代わりに、
いつまでたっても過去を振り返ってばかりいたり、
(英語教育においては、ネット時代前と今とでは、その環境が全く!
違うのですから、上記の本にあるような過去から学ぼうとか、
そういうのってナンセンスですから。。。)、
英語を使ってもいない(「使えない」ではないことを祈るばかりです)のに、
肩書き(とか話術?)だけで英語教育をリードしようとする、
そんな不毛なことが繰り返されるのではないでしょうか。

まえがきが長くなっちゃいましたが、
今日はネットラジオで中近東情勢の話を聞いていて、
これだよねー英語が使えるよさって、ということがありましたのでシェアーです。

オバマ政権のやり方がどうして裏目に出て混乱を生んでしまうのか、少しわかりました。
その道の日本人専門家の話を聞くまでもなく、その国出身の人から話を聞いたほうが、よっぽどわかりやすいですし真実味があります。
 The middle east turmoil and Israel 

多くの日本人にとって、アフリカや中近東の国々は、アメリカやイギリス、そして欧米の国々と比べたら、意識的な距離がとても大きいと思います。
でも、価値観であるとか倫理的なことって、けっこう日本人に通じることがあるような気がします。

英語の先生の中には、まだまだ英語圏にしか目が向いていないような人が多いです。発音にこだわるような人は、間違いなくそうですよね。
でもこれからは、
自分は英語圏の国々に追随するための英語を教えたいのか、
リンガ・フランカとしての英語を学び教えていくのか、
そこのところをもっと考える必要があるんじゃないかな、
と思ってみたことです

2013/11/14

ネタありfree writingもまた一興かも

英語教育に関するブログを彷徨っていたら、思いがけずinspiredされました。
ので、今日はネタありfree writingもどきといってみます。

ネタはこちらの記事です。

It was a big surprise for me that such a widely known, prominent English teacher, at least in some corner of an English education world exclusively in Japan, is writing an essay-in-Japanese sort of article about *cabbage* in *Japanese*.

Oh my my.... I don't know who are the target readers of the blog, but I bet the writer might have been thinking that many of the blog readers are *Japanese* English teachers, thus he shouldn't burden them too much with his superb English writing when the readers, *Japanese* English teachers, have to read lots of English materials every day and every night for their lessons.

I'm quite impressed with his mindfulness and I acknowledged again that it must be the reason of his popularity among *Japanese* English teachers; to not write any blog articles never ever in English?!... Well, I don't know I'm guessing right or not, but anyway the article gave me an inspiration for writing, so I'm going to do some free-writing time now with a topic of cooking.

I'm originally from the area where the writer is living and working, so when I see a word cabbage, my mind can't stop thinking about some dishes; it's Okonomiyaki especially with Sujikon. Yeah!

The dishes with Suji are very popular in Kansai area, I think, and I often boil a chunk of Suji at one time, freeze, and keep it for the latter use. You can make Oden, Okonomiyaki, Nikujyaga, Korokke and many more meals with Suji. Suji is beef, so it's not particularly cheap in Japan compared to other meat like chicken and pork, but still it makes a cost-friendly ingredient. So, I was thinking that dishes with Suji were popular all over Japan.

But it was not. Suji is not that popular as I expected in Tokyo and one of my friends said she had no idea what to do with it. Seriously? I explained to her how to cook Suji, but she didn't seem like particularly being interested in making some dishes with it. I should invite her to my house or an Okonomiyaki restaurant based on Osaka and let her try the exquisite taste of Suji with various kinds of dishes.

In winter, Suji makes a good ingredient for Oden. I honestly don't know how you can cook delicious Oden without putting Suji and boiled octopus in it. How sorrowful and disappointing it could be if I have to make Oden with no Suji or boiled octopus.


It was a free-writing about cooking today and I thought I need to read more articles about cooking if I want to write about dishes. I'm not sure how to say 料理、具材 or how to describe different, various tastes of the dishes. well well... 

(BTW, in case you're a new reader of this blog, please be reminded that I was totally in the mood of mockery and being sarcastic when writing up to around the half of the post. ^^;)
 

2013/11/08

先生は、もっとネットを使ったほうがいいと思うよ。。。

Lately I've been writing my thoughts and ideas almost always in Japanese for my new ebook, and it's getting harder and harder to think and write in English. That's not good... So today allow me to do some free writing kind practice here. The topic is IT literacy.

Here is some charismatic Japanese English teacher and he often posts an entry about his own books. (I guess if you're a frequent reader of the blog, then you can tell easily who I'm talking about.) Well, that's not I'm concerned about. I think it looks hilariously pathetic to do a sales promotion again and again, but if he or the publisher think it's an effective way of appealing to the public, then it's nothing I should be talking about here. But I have a big concern as a mother.

There are many pictures of high schoolers in the charisma teacher's blog. I wonder if all the parents are aware of the fact that the pictures of their kids are so carelessly thrown into the internet world almost every day with a clear intention of promoting the books.

What if some person with vicious mind would find the pictures and tried to play with them? It's a matter of a few minutes for those people to put some weird effects on the pictures with letters and illustrations and spread them all over the world through SNS anonymously. Once they start to circulate in the internet, there is no way to stop them.

I really don't understand why nobody is going to point that out to the teacher or schools and stop such a stupid act. There is nothing to gain for the students, right? They're used their faces and everything for free in order to sell the books. Is it fair?

Here, you can see the biggest and urgent issue; it's IT literacy. I think many students and parents are concerned about nowadays the danger of the internet, since there was a heartbreaking incident in Tokyo a few weeks ago, which provoked the nosy audience in the Net and they made the news circulating nationwide in the Net.

The people who are hopelessly behind the internet age are teachers, aren't they? They should use the Net more often in various ways and need to experience themselves the danger of it, or they can't teach students how to use it properly and effectively, but only to repeat commonly shared cautions. And I think teachers of English should become the leaders who can showcase practical and efficient ways of utilizing the Net for education.   

2013/11/05

第二弾ebookにリクエストありますか?

お願いです。

ebook第一弾は、awakeningというか一石を投じることを主眼に置いて書きました。
そのため、身近にアドバイスを受ける人や場がないと、
広い世界に放り出しておいて、この先どうしろ言うねん!?と、
さらに突っ込んだアドバイスを求める声がありました。

そこで、もう少し方向なりスタンスを示しても害にはならないのかなと思い、
第二弾をぼちぼち書き進めております。

もし、何かこういう話を含めて欲しいという、具体的な提案がありましたら、
是非お寄せください。
tadokuoffあっとまーくgmail.com でも、ブログへのコメント(承認せずに非表示のままがよければ、一言書き添えてください)でもOKです。
私なりの答えが出せるもの、出せないものがあるとは思いますが、
普段から英語に接しているがために、見えなくなっていることも多いので、
広く意見が聞きたいなあと思っております。

I've been looking for your blunt and different insights into the issue.
Thank you in advance!

2013/11/03

なんで加点法テストではいけないんですか?

なんで英語なんか勉強しなくちゃいけないんですか? 企画に参加させていただきましたので、ちょっと真似をして、今日の動画は
「なんでテストしなくちゃいけないんですか?」
という問いかけが最後の方にあるものです。
全部見る時間がない方は、15分あたりからどうぞ

せめて英語は、「加点方式」にしません?
他の教科でもうんざりする量の減点法テストをするんだから。