July 19, 2016

JET teacher Teresa's Writes about our ID trips!

Hey, everyone! It’s Teresa back to update you on the past two Seiritsu excursions.

The first trip was on July 7th: the international department spent the day learning about the Edo period in the Edo-Tokyo Museum, which surprisingly shares an uncanny resemblance to a Star Wars Imperial Walker.

Inside the museum, you will immediately see a bridge that is an exact scale model of the Nihonbashi Bridge, once known as the main entrance into the capital known as Edo, but is now currently Tokyo! I have to admit that it was impressive to see the scale model in the museum.

My favorite part about the museum though was the model figurines. There are many displays of these figurines depicting life in the Edo period. Even though they look like toys, they are more expensive than most toys. The tour guide told us that each little figurine cost a shockingly 5,000 yen! I don’t doubt that because they are all extremely detailed.

The second trip was on July 12th: the team once again packed up to go to Kamakura! I love Kamakura for many reasons, but the biggest reason is probably because my fiancé and I went to our first date there♡. I was very excited and happy to return.

Train delays slightly set us back, but everyone was a trooper. We pretty much ran up the hill to see the Great Buddha or the 大仏 [budai]. It was my third time seeing the Great Buddha, but goodness, the status is still huge!

After, we went forward to see the Hasedera Temple (長谷寺), the temple where I bought my love charm. I’m pretty sure the love charm didn’t do anything in my relationship with my fiancé, but it’s still cute to think it did.

Before lunch, we walked to the beach. We took our shoes off to walk on the sand and to feel the waves. Granted, it was about 30 degrees Celsius, but the 30° sand still felt amazing!

We finished the trip up with burgers and a round at Hachimangu Shrine.

If you have time, go enjoy the beautiful beach and grab a couple of charms (you never know; they may work!) at the many shrines in Kamakura!

Teresa Fong

JET Assistant Language Teacher

July 7, 2016

JET teacher Teresa's July Blog Post!

Greetings, everyone! It’s Teresa writing this during Seiritsu’s exam week. As with all exam weeks, students take their exams with as little distractions as possible--meaning, no club activities.

That means the international department won’t be holding the weekly English Conversation Club (ECC). Even so, students are still screaming “Hello”s and I am sure they are still using English.

Lately, since Laurence and I have been leading the club, we’ve been having regular students attending class. We generally have nine students who love playing Bingo and Taboo.

Due to the immense fun we have in ECC, I actually adopted Taboo into the classroom. It is a great way for students to exercise their oral skills while having fun! My favorite words to give students are: dinosaur, vampire, ghost, dragon, giraffe, witch. The weirder, the better!

If you are lacking some fun ESL games, try this out in your classroom!

July 5, 2016

JET teacher Laurence talks about life!

Hello! Laurence here.

Of course, living in Japan and working in a Japanese school means being constantly exposed to the Japanese language, and that’s a good thing! What’s a better time to learn Japanese than when you’re living in Japan right? But not so fast! It’s not that simple. When you teach English in Tokyo, a lot of the time you do end up speaking English for most of the day because, well, that’s your job. And it makes sense: the teachers want to practice their English, the students need to hear natural English and if you have colleagues who are also native English speakers, chances are they are going to want to speak in English too. So what can you do to learn Japanese despite all of this? Here are a few things I’ve found useful.

1: Use the Japanese learning resources from existing resources.
One of the things that make Seiritsu High School stand out from other schools in Tokyo is that we have an international department! Our international students whether they are returning Japan-born students or completely new to Japan need to learn Japanese and brush up on their kanji skills. That’s why we keep several books on the subject and as well as stacks of kanji cards (that have also been digitalized for convenience), which I use as an ALT too!

2: Be brave: talk to your colleagues who only speak Japanese!
From my experience, I’ve found that it’s much harder to get to know your colleagues in Japan. Some of them will not really talk to you aside from their mandatory morning greetings, which means that you might have to be the one to take the first step sometimes. A lot of the teachers do actually speak or understand a little English and that can help in a pinch. Having a translator app on your phone will also help making these conversations go a lot more smoothly. That being said, the teachers can be quite busy at work, which can make breaking the ice harder and that leads to my final tip…

3: Socialise - Go to work events and have fun!
You don’t usually associate parties and learning but when it comes to learning a new language in another country it absolutely does. Work parties in Japan usually start at a restaurant for a casual dinner and food is a great conversation-starter. Plus, you might want help from your Japanese colleagues to read or understand what’s on the menu. During the parties, you won’t feel like you’re bothering the teachers if you speak to them and it can make interacting at work easier after! As a bonus, if you are team teaching like I am, the parties can help strengthen your bond with your team teaching partners.

Bonus: This last tip applies to school trips and special days as well! Any context outside of regular work is good to get to know your colleagues, and they will probably be more willing to talk about themselves then.

Happy learning!

Laurence Dube

JET Assistant Language Teacher

July 3, 2016

Meg Writes about her school trip to Okinawa!

On the plane that was heading to Okinawa all of the people that were around me were sleeping.
On the first day that we went there it was raining a lot and there was strong wind .
We went to a place called Genbaku shiryoukan.
There we can see pictures of the war and some hurtful pictures of young children getting injured .
We all got soaking wet and our hair was all messed up because of the rain .

The next day we headed to Yoron island.
To get there we had to go by a fairy and the boat was so huge that everyone seemed to be surprised. On the boat there was like 3 hours of free time so I went outside to the deck to take pictures with my friends. And it was still raining then but there were a couple minutes that were sunny. When we got to Yoron island we went to our hotel and after that we headed straight to the beach !!!!!!
It was still a little bit cloudy but we were able to have an awesome time.

July 3, 2016

Meg writes about the Seiritsu Sports fesitval!

Meg Here!

On June 1st we had a sports festival, also known as the Washinomiya-sai (because it is held at the sports grounds in Washinomiya)!
It was a really sunny day so I was happy but it was way too hot ... Almost everyone got sunburnt!
Our class, C, was on the blue team. We did Mukada Hananosuteiji and shougaibutsu. [We hope to get pictures and explanations for our readers soon. BR]
Last year we were in the lowest grade in high school so we didn't have that much fun but this year we are in a higher grade so I had a lot more fun then last year. Everyone was taking a lot of pictures and videos!

Emilie and I are in the same class so we were the same color.

This is a picture of the English members!

At the end we took a group picture with all the people in the blue team even including the Senpai and Kouhai.

July 3, 2016

Seiritsu Welcomes Visitor Sally!

Hi! My name is Sally and I'm from New York. I am currently 18 years old and will be attending college in the fall.

Sally already making friends!

I am staying in Japan for about 2 weeks and one of those 2 weeks will be spent at Seiritsu. I decided to come to Japan in order to expose myself to the culture and make a life long dream come true. The first day at school, I was overloaded with information but the whole time I couldn't help but be giddy. The students and teachers were all accepting and welcoming and it didn't take me long to make friends!

This day was one of the best days I have had so far and I will treasure every memory of it!

Sally is taking part in school life through our short 'Experience Seiritsu' short programme. Even if you visit for a week, or even just a day, we can show you life and culture as a high-school student in the world's busiest city. If you're interested in visiting our school, please let us know at international@seiritsu.ac.jp!

Peter Williams
International Department



about Seiritsu

Seiritsu Gakuen is a private co-educational high school created in 1925 and it is located in Tokyo, Japan.

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