First of all this month I'd like to thank you very much! This month
has been one of the busiest we've ever seen with tours of Aomori and Hokkaido,
filming trips to the US and of course the NHK documentary (which was broadcast
all over the World, and can be seen again in Japan on August 26th!).
But wherever we have been you have all been so supportive, helped us out
a great deal and we can certainly see why your students are so good! Thank
New JETs and Summer Parties!
We did the JET (Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme) re-contracting conference
in Tokyo last month, and the response has been great, thank you! I was
thinking the other day that one of the main reasons I enjoyed JET so much
was because of the atmosphere amongst the other JETs when I got there.
The 2nd and 3rd years in my area organised beach parties, beer garden parties,
and sprung us out of the office to attend two training seminars that they
organised (one going through ideas for elementary school, one for junior
high). These sort of things can help so much, so if you find you have some
free time over the summer, use it to organise things for the new JETs,
and give them a head start! Come September and the start of term, I'm sure
they'll appreciate it, plus of course it's lots of fun!!
Lots of people have been asking recently about ideas for big groups or for summer camp activities. Well, I'd recommend the Group Game ( http://genkienglish.net/group.htm )as a great warm up. Then songs like "What's your name?", "Left and right" or "How are you?" ( http://genkienglish.net/songs.htm )also work really well with big groups. Another cool idea is to get the kids to practise a phrase in pairs (such as "Thank you"), then they split up and try it with a new partner. When they have practised with 3 partners, they sit down! The whole school should be able to do it within 20 seconds!! It's fun!
Last month we had two trips to the US (you'll see what we were preparing in the Autumn time), and from tomorrow I'm going to be doing volunteer teacher training in Thailand. It's always important to change your lessons to reflect your students' needs, and one of the interesting things about Thailand is that I won't be able to introduce the Hammer Game ( http://genkienglish.net/hammer.htm )or the Ladders game ( http://genkienglish.net/ladders.htm )! Touching heads and pointing feet towards other people isn't a done thing!! It's always worthwhile checking if there are any cultural taboos in the countries where you teach!
It's back! (only just in Japan though!), so be sure to try the Star Wars game. http://genkienglish.net/starwars.htm The latest news about light sabers is that Toys R Us is the place to buy toy ones, as the inflatable ones seem to have disappeared!! Oh, and try changing the masks to reflect the new characters! Personally I'd quite like to try it with Yoda vs. Darth Maul!!
The reaction to Joel's book ( http://genkienglish.net/joelsbook.htm ) has been huge, so in my 2nd week in Thailand I'll spend the time writing up my accompanying Genki English book, and also get time to puts loads of new stuff on the website! This month I've put up the Japanese version of London Bridge, the English version of my "Everything about elementary school" article, and of course the desktop wallpaper for August ( http://genkienglish.net/desktop.htm )! Next month there'll be a lot more, so if there are things you'd like to see, then get in touch!! And our people in Japan will still be here to get your CD, video and book orders sent off straight away!