Blog

Questions from Students

I’ve been to all of my schools at least once and finished almost all of my self-introductions. When there’s time during class, students will ask me questions they have in either English or Japanese. These are the most common and/or memorable things they’ve asked or said.

Politics:
• What do you think of Trump?
• Do you prefer Trump or Clinton?
• What do you think of North Korea?

Pokémon:
• Why do you like Pokémon?
• What Pokémon do you not like?
• Why do you like Gengar?
• Is Gengar your boyfriend?
• Do you like Mimikyu?

Gaming:
• Are you a gamer?
• What consoles do you have? (Everyone freaked out when I said PS4.)
• Do you have the Nintendo Switch?
• What games do you like?

Anime:
• What anime do you like?
• Which stand do you like? Star Platinum or The World?
• Who is your favorite Jojo character?
• Do you like Dio?

Dating:
• Are there a lot of good-looking guys in America?
• Have you ever had a boyfriend?
• Are you married?
• Please marry me. (This was from a female student.)
• What kind of guy is your type?
• Do you like guys or girls?
• Out of all the boys in this class, who is the cutest? (This is one of few questions I won’t answer.)
• What do you think of [male teacher’s name here]?
Q: Do you have a boyfriend?
A: No.
Q: Really???
A: Really.

Q: Please go out with [male teacher].
A: That’s not a question!

Japan:
• What’s your favorite Japanese word?
• What’s your favorite kanji?
• Who is your favorite Japanese comedian?

America:
• What is a good point about America?
• Is it safe in America?

Personal Life:
Q: Where do you live?
A: That’s a secret.
Q: What’s your phone number?
A: That’s a secret.
Q: Please tell me!
A: That’s not a question!

Oddly Specific:
• Have you ever rented a movie and then found out that it was airing on TV the same day?
• Is your house clean?
• Which airport did you land at?

Q: What was the first thing you ate in Japan?
A: Subway!

Miscellaneous:
• What is your favorite Japanese song?
• Your hair is the same color as these meatballs! It’s cute! (This was during lunch when we had meatballs and ketchup.)
• Do you know who I am?
This was on the first day of class. Everyone laughed when I looked down at the seating chart.
• Do you like Michael Jackson?
I said yes and he did a Michael Jackson dance for everyone.

Q: Let’s play soccer!
A: That’s not a question!

Q: Do you like me?
A: You’re very enthusiastic, so yes, I like you!
The class went crazy when I said this.

Q: Who is your favorite Japanese idol?
I answered, not realizing that my favorite idol’s name is almost the exact same as my JTE‘s name. The class started laughing at me and pointed at their teacher.
A: No! Not your teacher! The guy in Hey! Say! JUMP!


I hope everyone back home is doing well! I may post my self-introduction here for you guys to read.

seahawks flag copy.png

Blog

🌸April Update🌸

 

It’s been a little over a month since I arrived in Japan, so it’s about time I post an update.

As most of you know by now, I made it to Japan! I’ve adjusted to life very well here.

April 7th was the start of the school year. Going into work, I had very limited knowledge about the Japanese school system. Everything I knew came from anime and my Japanese friends’ experiences. Students are to follow strict uniform rules, stand up when giving an answer in class, and clean the school. They are not permitted to work part-time, drive a car to school, or use their phones.

In these last two weeks, I’ve learned a lot more about the schools here. I’ll go in-depth on comparing Japanese and American schools in another blog post. For now, here’s a brief summary of the main things I’ve noticed in my first two weeks:

  • To go in and out of the school building, there are separate entrances for students and teachers.
  • When you enter the school you change your shoes, and you change shoes again when you enter the gym. If you don’t have gym shoes or gym slippers, you go in your socks.
  • There are no bleachers in the gym. Students and teachers usually sit on the floor.
  • Classrooms for each grade are on one floor. For example, the second year classrooms might be on the third floor.
  • There are strict rules for students and teachers, but everyone is still able to have a lot of fun.

I’ve been to two out of five schools so far. For those who have been wondering, no, I’m not going to a different school each day of the week. I spend one to two weeks at each school.

It’s still a little early to give an accurate account of what the average day at work for me is like. Here’s what it’s been like so far: I arrive at school before the morning faculty meeting. During this time, I check my schedule to see what classes I have. When I have classes, I confirm the time and plan with the teacher. If there are no classes for me, I work on lesson plans, or I read about teaching and grammar.

Outside of school, my daily life hasn’t been too different from my life in the states. As soon as I walk into my apartment, it’s goodbye work pants, hello sweatpants. Sometimes I have prep work for the next day, so I’ll finish up whatever I couldn’t at work. Other times I have small projects I work on, like translating, so I’ll spend time on that. Usually, I fill my free time with video games and messaging friends. I’ve been very active on Snapchat, Line, and Google Hangouts. I also have a lot of friends in the area who I’ve been spending time with, so there’s been a good mix of busy time and downtime.

So far I’ve been to three parties. One of them was a party for the Board of Education. It was to kick off the new school year, welcome the noobs (me), and thank those who were retiring or leaving. The other two parties were welcome parties that friends of mine held. All three parties reminded me what Hekinan hospitality is all about. I may write a blog post detailing each of them later.

Adjusting to life here has been much easier than I expected. I know a lot of people here, which has helped a lot. Being able to speak the language and know the culture has also been a big advantage.

Also, the Seahawks schedule was released a few days ago, and I’m very excited. Most of the games are on Monday mornings at 5:25 (Japan time). I may be able to watch them before work, but what’s more likely is I’ll watch the games after work. We’ll see what works best with my schedule.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment! I’m working on an FAQ page, so I may answer your question there.

I hope everyone back home is doing well! I love and miss you guys!

seahawks flag copy.png

Blog

Greetings from Japan! 🗾

I made it! It’s been a little over a week since I arrived and the transition has been pretty smooth so far. I have a lot of friends here helping me learn the ropes.

I’m still trying to get set up here, so posts will be irregular for some time. Please be patient as I try to get the ball rolling on this project.

A lot of people have been asking me questions since I arrived, so I’m going to leave a mini-FAQ here to answer them.

Where are you living in Japan?
I’m in Aichi Prefecture (hence the blog name). In other words, not Tokyo.

What are you doing in Japan?
For those who haven’t heard the news, I have a job as an ALT (Assistant Language Teacher). In a nutshell, I’m helping the English teachers of my town with their classes.

What school level are you teaching?
Middle school, for the most part, but I will also be teaching classes for adults in the community. There’s also a chance I will also be helping at the elementary school level.

When do you start work?
Beginning of April.

What’s the time difference there?
Japan is 16 hours ahead of Pacific Standard Time.

Check back soon for more content! If there’s anything specific you would like me to talk about in my blog, post a comment down below.

seahawks flag copy.png