Sunday, May 31, 2015

The horse's name

Orange won the Nihon Derby.

I came to know how we say “hard” in Italian.
It is “duramente.”

Saturday, May 30, 2015

on the previous night

The rainbow has seven colors, but it has eight colors.
White. Black. Red. Blue. Yellow. Green. Orange. and Pink.

We can see the rainbow arc in the sky.
We can see eight colors drawing an arc on the ground.

What is it?
You can see it tomorrow in Tokyo at 15:40.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Translating English into pictures

Please read a passage of the English textbook.

We all know cats are very independent animals. Dogs respond to human commands. Cats don’t. If a cat-owner asks her cat to roll over, it probably won’t do it.

Students made pictures after reading.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Not only putting English into Japanese

“I cannot understand the meaning of making a picture from English sentences,” a student said.
Making a picture itself may not appear to be studying English.
My intention was to make my students be more active.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Once there was a band

Listening to “Rythm-A-Ning,” I suddenly remembered that I had a band in my university days. I can recollect its member’s names.

Piano: M.M.
Bass: K.J.
Drums: H.S.
Trombone: K.K.
and my trumpet.

I can recall the band name also. It was “Wild Pitch.”

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Monday, May 25, 2015

Reach for the Stars

“I don’t know why whales (くじら) became (ひとで),” a student said.
No, no. It’s not (ひとで). It’s BayStars. I told her the team’s slogan.
“Reach for the stars”

I didn’t know how we say (ひとで) in English.
“Asteroid” or “Starfish”

Oh my!

Sunday, May 24, 2015

on Sunday night

We went to Myanmar last summer. Where can we go this summer? I think to myself, with a toothbrush in my hand.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

saying that the world is beautiful

すべて塵にかえるのだから、世界はうつくしいと。 (長田 弘 1939-2015)

Ah, daily fragments called news―  
are these called our history?
Fresh every day―
therein lies our values.
Let’s say that the beautiful are beautiful.
Nothing eternal, and someday,
everything turns to dust, that’s why the world is beautiful.

Translating Osada Hiroshi into English, I think there is no time to feel depressed.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Yokohama DeNA BayStars

How do you say “sayonara” in English? It’s “goodbye” or “bye-bye” of course.

In Japanese baseball also, “sayonara” means “goodbye.” Who says? To whom? When? BayStars have said “goodbye” to Tigers at the end of the game.



This is a “sayonara” game. X means the moment.

On the other hand, in America, this kind of game is called “walk off.” The losing pitcher has to “walk off” from the mound without getting three outs.

The same thing, different expressions.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Pure Heart

It cannot help you live cleverly; (perhaps).
It is essential, however, for you to live well; (absolutely).
What is it?

One of my students thinks that it is “pure heart.”

It is delicate like a child. However, children can be happy to see a small wonder in their daily life.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Control Myself

It cannot help you live cleverly; (perhaps).
It is essential, however, for you to live well; (absolutely).
What is it?

One of my students thinks that it is “the ability to control oneself.”

It makes me wonder. Can I control myself? And I say to myself, “I will have to control myself to get my music, to play the trumpet.”

Monday, May 18, 2015

What is it?

In today’s class, I introduced the words I posted here yesterday. To make a quiz, I cut some words & phrases: “a musician” “a flute player” and “music.”

After introducing the original Japanese and my translation, I just asked, “what is it?”

This quiz was difficult; (perhaps).
It is important, however, for students to think; (absolutely).

A girl said, “it is culture.” A boy said, “it is philosophy.”
This quiz has no final answer.
Music. Culture. Philosophy.

What is music?

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Words of a musician

「うまく生きる」ことには役立ちません (たぶん)。 けれども「よく生きる」ためには欠かせないものです (ぜったい)。 (大嶋 義実)

It cannot help you live cleverly; (perhaps).
It is essential, however, for you to live well; (absolutely).
(Oshima Yoshimi, a flute player. 1958- )
It is music.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Going out with ~

How do you say “持ち歩く” in English?
I give you example sentences:
I walk with a paper in my hand.
I carry them, men and women, I carry them with me wherever I go. (Whitman)

Friday, May 15, 2015

Active Writing

High school students sitting in the classroom sometimes look lazy, but they must have looked busy at the same place when they took their entrance exam.

Tests make students work. So should I do tests in my classroom more often? I don’t think it goes well. I think almost no students like tests. But I know they want to learn something new.

What is “something new” in learning English? Creating sentences is one of them. It is not so easy for students to write English sentences. My role is to make it fun for them.

High school entrance exam has the English composition. Given a topic, students are required to write 3 English sentences. This year’s topic and model sentences are as follows:
“A good thing about Japan you want to tell foreigners”
I think Japanese food is a good thing about Japan.
It is delicious and good for our health.
I want people from other countries to enjoy it.

I want my students to be more active in my classroom. So I’m thinking of giving a topic and making them write 3 sentences.
I have 3 points in my mind.
・Don’t take too much time.
・Correct and feed back instantly.
・Not being like a test.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Active Learning?

Students themselves listen, read, speak and write?
I want my students to think.
I want them to be active.

Today, my students made pictures, based on English sentences.
To be sure, I should have taught grammar or sentence structures.
But they seemed to be active.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Q.A. in the Classroom

How old is Mzee?
What is he doing?
Why is Owen lonely?
What’s the difference between “alone” and “lonely”?
What are they doing?
Who is the teacher? Who is the pupil? How do you say “pupil” in Japanese?
What did he teach?
What do you think of Mzee’s face? An old tortoise and a baby hippo!

 That afternoon, the baby hippo saw Mzee, a 130-year-old tortoise. Owen dashed toward him because he was very lonely. But Mzee crawled away from him. Tortoises like to live quietly on their own.
 Owen, however, wanted a parent. He approached Mzee again and again. Little by little, Mzee began to accept him. The next morning, the park staff saw a surprising sight: Owen was sleeping comfortably next to Mzee.
 As the weeks went by, Mzee began to act like Owen’s teacher. For example, he taught Owen how to recognize edible leaves. Before long, Owen and Mzee became good friends. They swam, ate, slept, and played together.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Translation (5)

立ちどまらなければ ゆけない場所がある (長田 弘)

There is another place you could reach if you stop on the road. (Osada Hiroshi, a Japanese poet. 1939-2015) 

Whitman’s Song of the Open Road is a poem of moving. The road is a place for moving. But the final line reads, “Shall we stick by each other as long as we live?”
They seem to stop on the road. And they could reach “another place.”

Monday, May 11, 2015

Translation (4)

たいていの学生は、教科書について考えて居る。宇宙に於て、これほどにも乾燥無味の書物はないと。けれどもまた、必ずしもそうでないと言う日がくるであろう。彼等にして学校を廃め、今一度、試験の心配なしに読んだならば! (萩原 朔太郎)

Most students see their textbook as the most boring book without colors. They will recognize, however, they had seen their textbook with their eyes closed. Their eyes will open when they leave their school and don’t have to worry about tests!  (Hagiwara Sakutaro, a Japanese poet. 1886-1942)

I’m trying to open their eyes in the classroom as an ET in Japan!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Translation (3)

一杯の冷たい麦酒と、雲を見てゐる自由の時間! 昔の日から今日の日まで、私の求めたものはそれだけだった。 (萩原 朔太郎)

A glass of cold beer and free time of watching clouds! That’s all I’ve been looking for all my days.  (Hagiwara Sakutaro, a Japanese poet. 1886-1942)

It was published when the poet was 49 years old. It looks matured. And it also looks young.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Translation (2)

どこへでも流れてゆくひとつのさかんな意志と愛欲とのぐるうぷだ (萩原 朔太郎)

I always take to the city.
I choose to be in the cheerful crowds of the city.
The crowds is like a big emotional wave.
It is a group of vigorous will and desire flowing to all directions.  (Hagiwara Sakutaro, a Japanese poet. 1886-1942)

I think this is the expression of love among passing strangers.

What do you think of my translation?
I’m glad if you give me your comment.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Translation (1)

ただ たんに 生きたいなー あーだこーだ言葉のピンで 止められないで (岡崎 京子)

I just want to live, without being stuck by pins of words and words and words. (Okazaki Kyoko, a Japanese manga artist. 1963- )


Let’s try to put Japanese into English!
Please give me your translation!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Example Questions in the Classroom

Where is this story?

What’s the name of this strong man?

What is Haller Park?

What’s the hippo’s name?

Do you know why he was feeling stress?

The brave man said, “Catching him was very hard!”
Do you know why it was not easy?

  “That’s a hippo over there. What is he doing there?” ― a Kenyan villager shouted. A baby hippo was alone on the beach. He was trapped in the seaweed.
  Soon, hundreds of people were at the beach. Many of them worked all day on the rescue. But he resisted violently, and catching him was very hard. Finally, one brave man caught him.
  “Let’s take him to a safe place!” some people said. So they took him to Haller Park, an animal sanctuary. They named the hippo “Owen” after the brave man.
  Owen was safe in the park, but he was under stress. Hippos live in groups. Baby hippos learn everything from their elders. The park staff wondered, “Can he survive alone?”

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Blue Monday?

Perhaps lots of Japanese workers feel “blue Monday” tomorrow because GW holidays are over today. I am one of them.

How does it feel, however, if my students were longing for me?
No reality, but “blue Monday” also has no reality.
Tomorrow is Thursday.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Whitman's essential message was the Open Road

I have this book since 1997.

During this golden week, I was thinking and writing on Whitman.
The Song of the Open Road has brought me five points as follows:
1) From now on, “I” go out to the open road, leaving the house behind.
2) Walking on the road, “I” am passing with strangers.
3) And now here, “I” feel oneness with people in the open air.
4) But “we” must not stay here and go toward something great.
5) “I” will give myself to “you”, one of the souls of men or women.

“I” cannot live alone and at the same time “we” cannot live without souls.
What do you think who “you” are at the last scene (point 5)?
Whitman says it is you as a reader, I think.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Places to write

It’s difficult for me to write in the house, so I go out.

I went to Chitose-Karasuyama the day before yesterday.
I went to Shin-Nakano yesterday.
I went to Waseda today.

Actually, I cannot write outside, so I go to a coffee shop.

I went into Chat Noir the day before yesterday.
I went into Veloce yesterday.
I went into Chat Noir today.