Friday, March 20, 2015

April PIGATE meeting: Nicole Gallagher

Hi PIGATE! My name is Nicole Gallagher and I have lived in Kumamoto since 2010 when I joined the JET Programme as an ALT. I spent three great years teaching English at Seiseiko High School, Kumamoto Commercial High School, and Kuroishibaru Special Needs School, and I am now in my second year working at the Kumamoto Prefectural Board of Education as the ALT Prefectural Advisor where I provide work and personal support to the ALTs in Kumamoto. During my time as an ALT, I began and completed a Master’s in TEFL/TESL with the University of Birmingham. My dissertation topic focused on SHS teacher beliefs on conducting classes in English and using communicative language activities in class (the main revisions of the new Course of Study for English in 2013). I am interested in hearing what teachers think about teaching, and I believe that is the first step in understanding how to improve English education. As I continue my journey of teaching in Japan, I look forward to having some great conversations about teaching with all of you! 

Here's what I'll be talking about, I'd love to hear from you before the meeting, so please feel free to add comments below!

Teacher beliefs on conducting classes in English

TEFL trained educators often take it as a given that conducting English classes in English is necessary and appropriate, and indeed, the Senior High School Course of Study for English (MEXT, 2013) has established that English classes be conducted primarily in English. Yet how this mandate is adapted in the classroom is strongly influenced by the beliefs of teachers and their subsequent actions. In this presentation, I would like to have a discussion about your beliefs about conducting classes in English and explore how your beliefs may be shaping how the new Course of Study will be realized in the classroom.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

March PIGATE board meeting

PIGATE members came to KGU for the JASELE meeting and after the conference, gathered in the English lounge for a Board meeting.

Hard at work! Planning for the next 6 months!

Some things planned are
-April: Some preliminary presentations from PanSIG

-June: Hiroshi Fukushima and Rick Lavin on Shadowing

-August: Takaki sensei's ID card activity

A number of other things are planned, but we are always looking for more! And now some words from us!

What I was most interested in about is that how we can motivate students who are less motivated on studying English.
I'd like to make my class more cheerful from Monday. (Tomomi)

I learned a lot today. (Hitomi)

I am sooo motivated now! (Misato)

I'm proud of PIGATE! 20 of them came to the seminar! Wow!! (Takaki)

What impressed me most was the story about the importance of motivation.
I'll encourage my students to improve their English ability. (Soejima)

I learned "how I can motivate the students to study English". I'll try some ideas in my class. (Nagai)

I'm studying about learners' identity formation for my graduation master thesis. it is closely related to motivation. So, I had a very good time today. (Shiori)

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

JASELE and JES @ KGU: 4th English Education Seminar, 2015.03.14

The Japan Society of English Language Education (JASELE) and the Japan Association of English Teaching in Elementary Schools (JES) are jointly sponsoring a 4th English Education Seminar at KGU, Saturday, 14 March 2015. Please follow the link above for location, program, and registration details in Japanese.

Monday, March 2, 2015

A Blast from the Past: Mr. Waterman's Materials from 10 Jan. 2015

PIGATE members who attended the January workshop with Mr. Waterman
  • On adaptations from published board games, 
  • Emceed by Ms. Sakada at KGU

may already have received copies of his materials. That is, if they left their email addresses on the list that he'd prepared for requests for copies.

Worry not! For anyone who:
  1. Wasn't there in January to sign up, 
  2. Didn't get on Mr. Waterman's sign-up sheet, or 
  3. Wants the new improved version;
Mr. Waterman and I have prepared a Google document from his originals that you all can view via these links:

If you have any concerns or questions about access to those materials or how you may use them, please spell them out in comments on this post. Thanks!

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