English conversation class has finished for 2013 湯梨浜町英会話教室2013年後期が終わりました

2013.10.24 (Thu)

Last Tuesday, 22 October, we had the last English Conversation class of this term. This term, the primary school class tried out English greetings, and then learnt weather, colours, shapes and body parts. In the general class, we had conversations about the differences between English, American and Australian customs and accents, national stereotypes, idioms, public holidays in different countries, travel English and more. Of course, you don’t need to learn another language to be able to have cross-cultural understanding. Having said that, from the point of view that words carry with them culture, history and world views, in learning those words you can also understand a bit of that background.

While I did tutoring as a university student, and after graduation I worked in a hands-on science centre and did many science activities with children over three years, this English conversation class was the first time I spent a whole term teacher the same students. It should come as no surprise that even in just 8 weeks I got to know the personalities and preferences of the students, as well as the things they improved at and the things they struggled with.

In May 2014, we plan to have a new term of the English conversation class, but that’s a while away, isn’t it? I think it would be a real shame if you lost that English that you all worked so hard this term to acquire, so I’ve put together some ideas for self-study. If you choose to try them, I’d be really pleased.

  • Listen to English as much as you can. For example, did you know that you can change NHK News 7 into English (if you press the ‘bilingual’ button)? Also internet radio, podcasts and audiobooks are useful for this. Or if there’s an English movie or TV show that you like, try watching it without the subtitles. Instead of trying to understand each individual word, focus on trying to grasp the general meaning. Even if you just listen for five or ten minutes a day, your ears will start to get used to the rhythm of English and your listening skills will improve.
  • Similar to the above, read lots of English. Of course, I know that you’ll read this blog, right? As well as that, find blogs, websites, books and/or magazines about your hobbies or interests, and read them, even if it’s just for five minutes a day. Of course, it’s good study practice to look up words you don’t know, but doing that also means that reading could become a hassle, so my recommendation is to focus on reading to generally understand the text.
  • Write an English diary. Why don’t you have a go at writing about your day in English each day – even just one line?
  • Sing in English. Is there an English-speaking singer or band that you like? Look up the song lyrics, and read them as you sing along. Then, once you’ve remembered them, try singing along without looking at the lyrics, or give it a go at karaoke!

And of course, let’s catch up again next year in English conversation class!


私は大学生の頃によく家庭教師をし、卒業後に体験型科学館に就職して子供のための科学教室みたいなことも3年間ぐらい行いましたが、今回の英会話教室のように同じ生徒たちと一緒に一学期をずっと過ごしたのは初めてでした。 やはり、生徒たちの人柄や好き嫌い、上達することや困ることなど、8週間という短い間でしたが、見ることができました。


  • できるだけたくさん英語を聞くこと。例えばNHKニューズ7を英語音声に変えられると知っていましたか(音声切替ボタンを押せば)?インターネットラジオ、ポッドキャスト、オーディオブックなども効果的ですよ。もし好きな英語の映画やテレビ番組があれば、それを字幕無しで見ることがおすすめです。言葉を一個一個理解しようとするのではなく、聞いていることを全体的に理解しようとすればいいと思います。毎日5-10分でもできれば、耳がいつの間にか英語のリズムに慣れて、言葉は聞き取れやすくなるはずです。
  • 上と同じように、たくさん英語を目にすること。このブログの英語の文を読むことは言わなくてもしてくれますよね。その他に、趣味など、つまり好きなことについてのブログやウェブサイト、本や雑誌を見つければ、毎日5分でも読もうとすること。知らない言葉を調べて覚えようとしても勉強的にはいいのですが、あまりすると面倒くさくなるので、目指すのは大ざっぱな理解ですね。
  • 英語で日記を書くこと。毎日、一行でもいいですが、その日のことを英語で書いてみませんか。
  • 英語で歌う。好きな英語圏の歌手やバンドがありますか?歌詞を調べて、まずそれを読みながら曲を歌うこと。覚えたら、歌詞を見ずに歌ったり、カラオケでもチャレンジ!



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: