Tag Archives: Japan

Are You Listening? Responding to the Challenges of Diversity

Date: December 16th (Saturday)

Time: 13:30 – 17:00

Venue: Takemaru Hall, Ikoma City

Speakers: Parisa Mehran (Osaka University), Gerry Yokota (Osaka University

Cost: Free for JALT members, 1,000 yen for non-JALT members

This final event in the 2017 Nara JALT Program is dedicated to professional development, and particularly to the issue of diversity in our workplaces and communities. The recent implementation of the JALT Code of Conduct has highlighted the need for JALT to formalize the values that help to make it an inclusive and supportive professional network. As members of JALT, it is important we recognize and share those values, especially at times when they are challenged. Along with an overview of the Code of Conduct, this event features direct voices on the realities of harassment, and experienced views on how we can respond. The presentations will be followed by the annual Nara JALT End-of-Year Dinner Party.

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English Language Teaching through Japanese Eyes

Date and Time: October 1 (Sun) 13:00 – 16:30

Venue:  Yamato Conference Hall, Nara City

Speakers:

Hideyuki Kashimoto (Shijonawate High School)

Michi Yonezaki (Konan Women’s University)

Tetsuro Nishiyama (Todaijigakuen Junior & Senior High School)

This Nara JALT event features Japanese speakers specializing in English language teaching. Three Japanese presenters in various teaching contexts with different career backgrounds will share their practical teaching activities and ideas, and their current teaching projects. The audience will have the opportunity to ask any questions or seek teaching advice on completion of all the three presentations.

(日本語版はこちらまたはスクロールしてください。)

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Best of JALT 2017 Awardees

BestofJALT2017Nara JALT is pleased to announce that the award for the Nara JALT 2016 Best of JALT goes to Angela Wren and Rachel Stuart from the Nara Prefectural Horyuji Kokusai High School for their presentation titled “A Step by Step Introduction to Debate.” Angela and Rachel’s presentation was part of the very well received February 2016 event dedicated to practical English education at the secondary school level. Their presentation focused on debating and a systematic approach to empowering high school students with the linguistic resources, skills and confidence required to participate actively and successfully in this challenging form of public speaking. This was one of the best-received presentations hosted by Nara JALT in 2016, and participants had this to say:

“Their debate curriculum includes invaluable implications for teachers who want to implement debate or communicative language activities” (Masayuki Takano, Nara Prefectural Horyuji Kokusai High School).

“Their well-organized and well-thought out 10-lesson debate unit easily gets students engaged in interactive learning activities” (Motoko Teraoka, Kindai University).

Congratulations to Angela and Rachel for their outstanding efforts. As recipients of the Best of JALT award, Angela and Rachel will be honoured with an award certificate as part of the Best of JALT reception party held during the JALT 2017 International Conference in Tsukuba in November. If you are fortunate to attend the conference and reception party, be sure to offer them your personal congratulations.

A Night with Day: An interactive evening with Richard Day

CANCELLED.
We regret to inform you that this event was unfortunately cancelled. We apologize for the inconvenience.
Date: August 8th (Tue)
Time: 18:30–20:30

All You Ever Wanted to Know About ER

books

A joint Nara Chapter-ER SIG Event

DATE: Sunday, June 18th

VENUE: Yamato Conference Hall

TIME: 10.00 a.m. — 4.30 p.m.

Speakers:

(1) Ann Mayeda

Integrating ER into the Curriculum

 

(2) Paul Goldberg

The benefits of doing extensive reading online with Xreading

 

(3) Mark Brierley

How to persuade them to read

 

(4) Ann Flanagan

ER:  Building a better foundation for language learning

 

(Click on the presenter’s name to jump to the abstract and bio.)

 

Programme

9.30 Doors open.

10.00 – 10.50: Ann Mayeda

11.00 – 11.50: Paul Goldberg

11.50 – 12.50: Lunch

12.50 – 13.40: Mark Brierley

13.50 – 14.40: Ann Flanagan

14.40 – 15.10: Tea Break

15.10 – 15.40: Panel Discussion

15.40 – 16.10: Closing / Announcements / etc.

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Abstracts and Bios

(1) Integrating ER into the Curriculum

ANN MAYEDA

Ann will talk about the extensive reading program in place at Konan Women’s University. She will outline its framework and then share some of issues and challenges faced by the department in gradually implementing the ER component in the two-year core English program.  She will also delve into some of the reasons why teacher uptake may well be just as, or even more important than learner uptake.

Ann Mayeda is a lecturer and teacher educator at Konan Women’s University. Her research interest focuses on learner development and issues surrounding autonomy as it applies to young learners and young adult learners. She is currently involved in a research project to implement extensive reading programs in schools in Nepal. 

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(2) The benefits of doing extensive reading online with Xreading

PAUL GOLDBERG

Most educators understand that to successfully learn a language, students need comprehensible input, the kind of input that extensive reading provides. However, implementing an extensive reading program can be challenging. Obtaining enough graded readers, and making sure students are actually reading them are among the many challenges.  An online extensive reading system can provide an effective solution. However, it is important to understand that online extensive reading means much more than students being able to read graded readers on their computers or smartphones. It can put powerful tools like an interactive dictionary, character lists, audio-on-demand, and book ratings, right at their fingertips. Another, benefit is students can read whenever and wherever they want, not just while at school or at the library.

Additionally, online extensive reading also provides benefits to educators.  It allows teachers to monitor and track their students’ reading progress with greater accuracy. Teachers can know which books their students have selected, how many words they read, and even their reading speed which is useful since reading fluency is a key aspect of extensive reading. Finally, because of all of the rich reading data that can be collected, online extensive reading is ideal for academics interested in doing research on extensive reading.  In this presentation, the speaker, who developed the extensive reading website, Xreading, will explain how teachers can get the most out of using online extensive reading with their classes, and give a demonstration of the Xreading system.

Paul Goldberg has taught EFL in Venezuela, Spain, Korea, the US, and is currently at Kwansei Gakuin University in Hyogo, Japan.  His main areas of interest include extensive reading and extensive listening.  He is also the founder of Xreading, which he developed because of his desire to make extensive reading more accessible for students and easier for teachers. 

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(3) How to persuade them to read

MARK BRIERLEY

There is plenty of evidence that ER is effective for language acquisition but conclusive evidence is difficult to find, and we often hear that more research is needed. Meanwhile, ER advocates are often convinced that this an optimum activity for the learner, and all that is needed is more reading. However, ER will not work if students do not believe in reading, and teacher beliefs are critical to the success of institutional ER programmes. It is therefore essential to persuade students, and sometimes teachers, of the reasons for reading. It is helpful to have a variety of reasons to meet the variety of values within the audience, and to periodically remind them why they are reading. This presentation will look at seven different reasons: input, vocabulary, collocation, fluency, narratives, literacy and learner autonomy. While linguistic research strives to be more scientific, language teaching may actually be more like a religion.

Mark Brierley teaches English at Shinshu University in Matsumoto, Nagano prefecture. He edits the JALT ER SIG newsletter and works on the Extensive Reading Foundation Placement Test. As well as Extensive Reading he is interested in Low Energy Building.

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(4) ER:  Building a better foundation for language learning

ANN FLANAGAN

Our second language learners are constantly being challenged to achieve higher scores on English proficiency tests like TOEFL, TOEIC and EIKEN to name a few, but fail to hit the mark due to slow reading, and a limited range of vocabulary and knowledge.   This also can be a contributing factor to demotivation in the language classroom.  As Richard Day states in Extensive Reading – Into the Classroom, “Using authentic texts that are too difficult for most language learners, is a little like learning to play the piano. Learners start with easy pieces. Teachers do not ask their pupils to move straight on to music by Beethoven, Mozart or Liszt. In order to reach that goal, beginners start at the beginning by learning to play music written for beginners.”  Not only does ER give students a better foundation in reading skills, but it also transfers to other areas of language learning such as grammar, listening, speaking and writing. ER provides students with an additional support structure to be more proficient in language acquisition. Furthermore, it provides students a tool for lifelong learning and enjoyment. In today’s workshop, the presenter will share her journey both the joys and tears as an ER Coordinator in a private secondary school in Kyoto.

Ann Flanagan has been teaching at Ritsumeikan Junior and Senior High School in Nagaokakyo, Japan for the past 19 years.  She has an MA in TESOL from the School for International Training. Her research interests include extensive reading, teacher training and curriculum development.

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English for High School Students

Date & Time: Sunday, 9 April 2017 – 10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Speakers: 1. Masayuki Takano 2.Hideki Yamamoto

Location: Yamato Conference Hall (やまと会議室)

Event Abstract:

In general, teaching English in high school includes more constraints such as the necessity of preparation for university entrance exams. The presenters will share their teaching activities considering such constraints. Audience members will have chance to develop their understanding toward current situations and issues in high school English education. Presentations will be followed by a picnic in the park (weather permitting).

(1) Introduction to English for High School Education

Masayuki Takano (Nara Prefectural Horyuji Kokusai High School)

Recently, Japan’s educational policy has seen an increasing emphasis on preparing its youth for the global economy. As a result, there have been significant changes in its university entrance exam requirements, which in turn impacted Japan’s high school English education. The Ministry of Education also began to place more emphasis on cultivating global citizens who, while remaining rooted to their Japanese heritage, are able to succeed in the global economy. This presentation discusses the changing expectations for high school English teachers, while touching upon its connection with Japan’s university English education.

(2) In-class and Out-of-class activities for Japanese high school students

Hideki Yamamoto (Nara Prefectural Koriyama Senior High School)

In-class and out-of-class activities for Japanese high school students are introduced in this session. In the first half, in-class activities for high school students to improve four skills are introduced. The activities are designed in terms of Paul Nation’s four strands: meaning-focused input, meaning-focused output, language-focused learning, and fluency development. In the second half, a collaborative project between Japanese and Taiwanese students is introduced. As an extracurricular activity, both students in Japan and Taiwan have online discussions before they actually meet with each other. Afterwards, they present their project to the audience together.

「高等学校における英語教育について」

一般に、日本の高等学校での英語教育においては、大学入試に備える必要性などの 拘束があります。このようなことを考慮した授業活動を皆様に紹介し、高等学校にお ける英語教育の現状と論点について、より理解を深めていただける機会を提供します。 講演終了後は、隣接する奈良公園でのピクニックを予定しています。(雨天中止)

日時: 4月9日(日)午前10:00~12:00

場所: やまと会議室

1.「高校教育の英語教育概論」

高野 正之 奈良県立法隆寺国際高等学校

近年、若者への「グロー バル化対応」を意識した日本の教育方針が、大学入試要件 の大きな変更を余儀なくさせ、加えて、そのことが高等学校の英語教育に影響を及ば しています。日本の大学の英語教育との関連性に触れ、高等学校の英語教師への 期待がどのように変化しているかについて議論します。

2.「高校生のための”教室内””教室外”におけるアクティビティ」

山本 英樹 奈良県立郡山高等学校

前半は、”In-class 教室内””Out-of-class 教室外”で実践できるフォー・スキル向 上を目指す高校生向けのアクティビティを、後半は、課外活動である日本と台湾の高 校生たちの共同プロジェクトのオンライン・ディスカッションについて紹介します。

Harold Palmer in Japan: A Lesson from History

Our very own Leigh Mcdowell and Yoko Yasu will be talking to us about Harold Palmer and his  work in the teaching of English in Japan.

Catch them with us first before they take this great talk to the national conference.

Title:
Harold Palmer in Japan: A Lesson from History
Description:
Eighty-eight years ago, Harold E. Palmer—a language educator widely renowned for his creativity and expertise—was invited to Japan as Linguistic Advisor to the Ministry of Education. For fourteen years, Palmer worked tirelessly in Tokyo creating a wealth of language learning tools and techniques that would help Japanese reform their English language teaching.
Come and hear the story of this great man’s attempts to improve English language teaching in Japan in the 1920–30s. This is a story of success and failure; an episode in history from which we can all draw inspiration and learn something about what it means to teach English here in Japan.
Speakers:
Leigh McDowell
Leigh McDowell has been teaching and learning in Japan for over ten years now. He currently teaches scientific writing and presentation at Japan’s top ranked national university, the Nara Institute of Science and Technology (NAIST). After coming across the work of Harold E. Palmer in the Master’s in TESOL Program at Temple University, Leigh was inspired to research more and share with others the story of this great figure in the history of English language teaching.
Yoko Yaku
Yoko Yaku teaches English at the Osaka Pprefectural Matsubara Senior High School. She has also recently completed her Master‘s in TESOL from Temple University, Japan. Yoko is convinced that her English would be much better now if she had been taught in junior high school with Palmer’s methodology instead of the traditional Japanese way of teaching English. In this presentation, Yoko will share her reasons for that conviction.
Date: October 17th (Sun)
Time: 15:00–17:00
Location: Nara, Yumekaze http://www.yume-kaze.com/site/access/index.html
See you there!

March 20th RINTARO SATO.

Trying out our brand new venue with a hot presentation from RINTARO SATO.

We are very lucky to get Rintaro so early on our events calender, he’s very much in demand right now with his ideas on this very current  topic.

Saturday March 20th from 5.45 – 7.00pm.

Venue. Please note we are using a new venue this year.
MANABUNARA. It is upstairs from Starbucks at Gakuenmae Station on the Kintetsu Line.
 http://www.manabunara.jp/.
We respectfully request you RSVP  if you plan to attend to avoid disappointment as seating may be limited.
Just send an email to me at oneworld.catriona@gmail.com if you plan on coming or require further information.

About the Presentation.
 
Title: Teaching English in the Japanese EFL Environment.
How Efficacious is it?

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Some words from Rintaro about his presentation.

In the presentation I’ll discuss how English can effectively be taught in the Japanese EFL (English as a Foreign Language) context. In this environment, learners do not often have an actual need for communication in English.
It is rare for them to have exposure to English; Rather, English is taught as a knowledge-based subject; Some students study it for tests or entrance exams. Thus I believe teachers should create teaching approaches for this input scarce EFL situation.
 In learning English, the utilization of tasks has been gaining a high profile recently, and the long-established traditional teaching methodology based on the Presentation-Practice-Production (PPP) model is now being replaced by Task-Based Language Learning (TBL) in SLA. (Skehan, 1998).
However, in the Japanese EFL learning environment, we might be skeptical of the effectiveness of TBL in grammar teaching. In the presentation, the suitability of TBL and PPP in the Japanese school context and the effectiveness of PPP from the point of view of skill acquisition theory will be discussed.
I’ll also be discussing other aspects of effective teaching.
 
Rintaro Sato
Rintaro Sato is an associate professor in the Department of English Education at Nara University of Education. His research interests include intake and output processing, feedback and negotiation of meaning. Before he came to Nara , he taught English in public high schools in Hokkaido for over 15 years. It’s very difficult for him to stop playing rugby( though he is not young ). Email: rintaro@nara-edu.ac.jp
Hope to see you there.

Marcus Benevides. Task-Based Language Learning in Japan

May 17th (Sunday). 2pm-5pm
Tezukayama Gakuenmae Campus.

Title: Task-Based Language Teaching ( TBLT) in Japan .

Speaker: Marcos Benevides.
Marcos Benevides is an assistant professor at Kansai Gaidai University. He has
taught EFL in Japan for ten years, at every level from elementary school to
university, from private tutoring to graduate courses. He has been an invited,
sponsored, featured or keynote speaker at dozens of ELT seminars and conferences
in Japan and abroad. He has recently guest edited the “TBLT in Japan” special
issue of The Language Teacher (March 2009), and co-authored Widgets: A
task-based course in practical English.

Abstract.
Task-based language teaching (TBLT) represents the evolution of communicative
language teaching. It is fast becoming the dominant ELT approach worldwide, as
evidenced by task-based concepts emerging in tests such as the new TOEIC, in
language descriptor systems such as the Common European Framework of Reference
for Languages, and in an increasing number of commercial textbooks.

However, resistance to TBLT continues in Japan on grounds ranging from “Japanese
students are too shy” to “Japanese students are not creative enough”, and “the
Japanese demand a teacher-centered approach” to “communicative approaches have
been tried here already and they failed”. In this presentation, Benevides will
explain why each of these arguments is fundamentally flawed.

This presentation will draw on the speaker’s co-authored textbook, Widgets
(Longman 2008) to explain a variety of TBLT concepts. Participants will walk
away with new ideas regarding lesson planning, motivating students and, yes,
clear evidence that Japanese students are extremely creative!

Folks, come if you can. This guarantees to be another interesting and valuable
presentation,for anyone working in any branch of teaching in this country, by a
seasoned and much sought after presenter.