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ERIC Number: ED406689
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Mar
Pages: 26
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
American Teachers Working with Japanese Teachers of English in Japanese Schools. "An American View of Educational Contradictions."
Reed, Helen R.
This paper describes the experiences of an English teacher from Washington State University who taught English in Japan for a year. The teacher concluded after her year in Japan that the country is and has been involved in a less-than-conscious national effort to "stonewall" the effective teaching of English as a second language in all its forms. The position is taken that essential change for English education in Japan comes down to two possibilities: either English education must seriously include verbal skills and cultural understanding, allowing the incorporation of English into the broader scope of life in Japan, or the requirement for English as a second language in public schools should be dropped and the incredible amount of public money spent instead on other national problems. It is noted that Japanese teachers rarely teach their English classes in English--teaching their students to read and to write English, but steadfastly avoiding teaching them to speak or understand spoken English. Even teachers who participated in intensive language training in America rarely taught their classes in English. In fact, students who have had schooling abroad and then renter Japanese schools are discouraged from using the English skills they have mastered. Over a period of time, the teacher realized that what she could best do to teach English in Japan was work with adults in and around the city and the public school system. Teaching English to adults in PTA groups and night classes for a city labor union group proved to be of value to all involved. (Contains 8 references.) (CR)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Japan