Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Happy New Year from Kyoto, Japan!

GTS would like to say "A Happy New Year to ALL" from Heian Jingu Shrine in Kyoto, Japan!! I wish Year 2010 be another excellent year for everyone! I also hope all of you to my class soon! Japan 1102 in the morning is full, and there are some 10 seats left for the night class. 2202 and 2252 have plenty of seats! Summer study abroad program application deadline is approaching and I hope many of you could join the study trip as well! The spring trip seems difficult to be realized yet another field trip has been approved for December 2010 (12/17/10-12/27/10)!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Holiday in Japan today!

Today is a national holiday in Japan. GTS's daughter, EMA's birthday! (Oh, Emperor's birthday today). Japanese 1102 in the morning is full now. There are 10 seats left for the night class! It is exceptionally cold in Kyoto though a lot better than Chicago or Washington D.C. I wish you all a Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Greeting from Kyoto, JAPAN!

GTS has just arrived in Kyoto, Japan for running some errands caused by GTS father's passing last June. Final letter grades of classes should be posted soon! Out of 52 students in GTS 1101 classes, 44 students survived (17 A's, 2 B's, 14 C's, 9 D's, and 2 S's). For 2201, there were 10 survivers (1 A, 4 B's, 2 C's, and 3 S's). There are 35 students registered in 1102 in the Spring semester as of today! Study abroad applications are increasing as well! GTS gets some rest here in Japan and get back there to enjoy with students in classes!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

GTS/JCC 2009 Final Dinner with 30 comrades!

GTS/JCC 2009 final dinner was successfully finished with 30 participants! Many of past study abroad participants from DePaul Univ., Eastern Michigan Univ., Art Institute of Chicago, etc joined as well as a married couple those who met with each other in GTS' Japanese language class some years ago! Their twin boys were born on 12/23/2007 exactly two years after GTS' little Ema. Moreover two students who joined the dinner for the first time from DePaul are planning on participating in COD Summer Japan Study Abroad Program in 2010! Wow! 2010 summer program seems to have many energetic students! Honor Seminar has almost completed and it will come back next fall as a joint project of Japanese Culture Class (Japanese 1100) and Social Problems Class (Sociology 2220)!
JCC/GTS dinner will shift to the last Friday night of the month beginning in January; 1/29/2010 and 2/26/2010!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Already Decemeber!

GTS hopes to see everyone at the GTS/JCC dinner this Friday at Kyoto Sushi at 7pm! Year 2010 is just around the corner and I enjoyed '' as I did a while ago. According to the response, I am an awful teacher letting motivated students down! I am unclear (as I also admit this all the time!). I am just reading a textbook, hahaha. I am NOT teaching Kanji (well, what can I do? teach you how to write? well that is the computer's job in this era!) I am not clear on the grade... (might be right. But I can tell you exactly how many points you got out of how many possible points at any time. You can do the math and you can figure out your grade as 'D' or 'F' but often your grade report says 'C' or 'D.' Why? I don't have to tell you, do I? YOU know how many points you get! Miracle will never happen! Most of other comments might be true! Sorry for those who quit learning Japanese because of me but I know those who enjoy my class outnumbers! Agree? Hope you do!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

GTS sincerely greets to you all, "Happy Thanksgiving." We haven't seen significant snow here yet unlike the usual year. I hope every student got warmed up with feast and smile without forgetting Japanese. GTS/JCC dinner will be on Friday of the next week and I'd like to greet to you all, "Merry Christmas, Happy New Year." 1102 morning class is about to be closed! (5 more seats left) though night class has many seats available as of today! To those who are in class now, let's survive! I need students enrolling in 2252 studying Japanese with Doraemon!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Heading to San Diego!

GTS is leaving for San Diego on Thursday to attend the annual conference of ACTFL/NCJLT (American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages & National Council of Japanese Language Teachers). Prior to this event 1101 and 2201 students finished their chapter test. The average of 1101's test was 70%, which was a little lower than expected and 2201's test was 86%, which was a little higher than usual! Spring semester has a special 2252 class and the textbook for the course will be [どこでも日本語], very new book with ドラえもん in it and some authors are GTS friends. Hopefully it will be the fun class. Next week will be the thanksgiving and the following week will hold GTS/JCC dinner already! Time really flies!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Small Party yet Fun! Need your Help!

GTS regular dinner last night was rather small with 12 people but I was very glad to see some former students since about 8 months! We will have 2009 last dinner on Friday 12/4/2009! Spring semester registration began and I need help from some of you! Japanese 2252 needs 10 students and so far about 5,6 are secured and a few more needed. 2252 is the last sequential class at COD and we will have very different approach from other classes! We may use film and/or song and/or manga as a learning tool! There is no prerequisite but 2201 completer and 1102 A+ completer are educationally welcomed! 2252 class meets only once a week on Tuesday from 1pm until 3:50pm. Those who are in 2202 as well may begin another class at 6pm so you can create your own super duper Japanese Tuesday!!! How about that? GTS need now the enthusiast for Japanese language!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween! GTS became a Pooh with little Rina at home! GTS/JCC dinner will be coming up this Friday. I hope many will show up! Spring Semester registration will begin soon! There will be one 1102 class in the morning (M-Th 11-12) and one at night (MW 6-8).
2202 class time will be changed to T/Th 6-8pm due to the classroom availability. 2252 will meet on Tuesday (2-5). Besides, there will be Spring Break Japan Field Study Trip. Now 1101 under GTS has shrunk and became fairly solid group of enthusiastic students of about 50! I am proud of those who can keep up with me and try their best!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Spring semester registration is coming UP

Spring semester registration is now coming up and I sincerely hope that many of 1101 and 2201 students continue to study next semester at 1102 and 2202. There will be only two 1102 classes (M-Th 11-12, and MW 6-8) and one 2202 class (TTH 6-8). Also students are encouraged to register or apply either Spring Break Japan Trip or/and Summer Study Abroad program. Summer Study Abroad has already several students admitted in so only dozen more slots are left! Yes, our regular JCC/GTS dinner is coming in two weeks on Friday, 11/6/2009.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

1101 has begun shrinking!

Upon completing Lesson 3 test, it seems that 1101 has just begun shrinking. Those mysterious seats will now become official empty seats after the mid-term verification next week. The average score of this 3rd test was 104 out of 130 (80%) which is a lot higher than last two previous tests. Hopefully less withdrawal towards the end of semester. The global classroom project between COD and Hiroshima Jogakuin University in our honor seminar (Japanese 1100 & Sociology 2200) began today and every student met Japanese students through web cam screen!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Zoo after Workshop!

On Saturday, GTS as a president of Illinois Association of Teachers of Japanese (IATJ) organized its Annual Professional Development Workshop at Elk Grove High School attended by over 25 Japanese language teachers of K-16 levels. The topic was "how to teach Japanese without creating students with stereotype such as "Japanese likes cleanliness (which is not true when looking at each household kitchen!)." Exhausted? ちょっと。So on Sunday GTS went to Racine Zoo in Wisconsin!!! It was a bit chilly but had great time with animals being very close! Yes, I love Zoos and Aquariums. TV channel? Sure, Animal Planet Channel! Chapter test is coming up for 1101 and misterious seats are growing!

Friday, October 2, 2009

JCC dinner was well-attended!

The second dinner of this academic year has passed! Over 20 GTS family members showed up. Current students, former study abroad participants, Japan field trip participants, former JET and future JET gathered with lots of smiles. This was the only opportunity where some might meet former classmates as well. The restaurant added one more room for us so that everyone could be together! Some were ready to apply JET program, and others were planning to take Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT), and the rest were at least ready for the next dinner on November 6th.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Second Test has done in classes!

GTS had to attend the board meeting for the Association of Teachers of Japanese(ATJ) over the weekend. Luckily enough, the meeting was held in Arlington Heights so I didn't have to travel too much! This is one of the two national organizations for Japanese education in the US. GTS was a president of the other organization (NCJLT) in the year 2004-2005. The second test has just done for Japanese 1101 and the average seems to be the same as the last one (72%). A few students may withdraw after this because no Roma-ji after Lesson 3, which will become the biggest challenge to students. Hopefully no one left behind!! Oh, JCC/GTS dinner night is coming up this Friday (10/2) and would like to see many of you there!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Japanese class for parents at the Dooley School began!

The Dooley Eelementary School (K-8) in Schaumburg, IL has dual language program (12 Japanese native speakers and 12 English native speakers in one class are learning everything in both Japanese and English). This is the only program at the public school in the United States available. GTS began teaching Japanese language and culture to parents so that they can learn Japanese together with their kids and help homework, etc. The class is basically on every Friday night (5:30~7:00pm). Well the first class went well and I am sure everyone could enjoy GTS! Due to this class, GTS/JCC dinner will begin at 7:00! Next dinner will be on Oct. 2!!
By the way, the Application for Summer Study Abroad program began coming in!

Former classmates in GTS class got married!

On this very memorable Saturday, Ashley and Russ had the wedding ceremony at the Morton Arboretum! Congratulations! I believe that they met and got know with each other in GTS Japanese class about 5 years ago! I am very happy to see them together and hope their partnership continues to be fruitful and peaceful! I planned to attend with my little EMA and she was so excited as well until she got a bit sick! Too bad, but her little smile should have reached Ashley and Russ as well! This is a little too personal but one of the best events for my former students! Congratulations again!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

First Test Completed!

Both 1101 and 2201 had the first Information festival this week. The average of those tests are 72-3% for both. This has been expected, so it is good. Scores range from 100% to 4%!! The size of the class may shrink a bit after returning the test result to each student. Now the application form for 2010 Summer Study Abroad Program is ready to be distributed!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Over 40 GTS Clan members showed UP!

The dinner was incredibly successful with over 40 people showing up. It was so many comrades that I even could not keep my seating place! Over a dozen former study abroad participants with some new faces! Maybe 6 female students from Hiroshima attracted quite a few folks! GTS was so happy to see all the smiling comrades and got really energized and ready to 'scare' students in class! Besides students from Hiroshima and COD, they were from DePaul U, Elmhurst C, North Central C, UIC, IIT, NIU, Eastern Michigan U, etc. Thank you for all for the beginning of the academic year 2009! Next dinner? Too early to worry but it will be on Friday 10/2/2009! The first quiz will be coming up on Tuesday next week at 1101 so there will be more empty seats in class after that!!

Friday, August 28, 2009

First Week of the semester passed!

GTS, as usual, informed students of the retention statistics at the beginning and began moving forward! Still all the classes are full and I am glad to see quite a few in 2251 as well as 2201. 6 students from Hiroshima Jogakuin University, who assisted our students in Hiroshima during the study abroad program will visit us next week. JCC/GTS dinner will be on Friday 9/4 joined by them as well! 1101 students are surely struggling with memorizing Hiragana now but will get easier in class!!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

The fall semester is just arond the corner!

1101 classes are all filled and quite a few students want to get the registration permit to join. Yes, they can probably join the class since quite a few students will withdraw or disappear in a couple of weeks! 2201 has only 9 students as of today and a couple more students may join but it will be a small class since there were a few survivors in 1102 last spring!! First JCC dinner is coming up on Friday (9/4). GTS plans to bring Japanese students from Hiroshima to the dinner!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

GTS is back in Chicago! 1101s are CLOSED!

GTS made a presentation at the academic conference held at Ritsumeikan University on Sunday 8/9 and left Kyoto next day for Yokohama with Ema to get ready for taking off Narita! On Tuesday, a big earthquake hit Shizuoka stopped both Shinkansen and Main highway from Kyoto to Tokyo. We were lucky! 11-hour flight took us back to Chicago! Wow! Japanese 1101 classes have all been closed! JISABOKE (Jetlag)!!!!!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

9 seats left for 1101!!!

Only 9 seats left for Japanese 1101 in fall! Hurry up! It's too hot and humid in Kyoto now! GTS is preparing for Spring 2010 trip and summer program in 2010 as well! GTS and his daughter EMA will be getting to Lake Biwa tomorrow night for its fireworks festival!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Real Summer began in Kyoto!

90 degree day finally arrived here in Kyoto. GTS took Ema to kindergarten summer class in the water stream inside the Kyoto Imperial Garden! My god! It's too hot! Ema has another class tomorrow in the stream before going to Lake Biwa Fireworks Festival on 8/7! By the way, 1102 has only 11 seats left and morning classes have been closed!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Rain Continues in Kyoto!

Sudden rain continues here in Kyoto. I went to my chiropractor to fix my back before climbing up the Mountain Temple (Tanukidani Fudoin) tomorrow for my father's farewell ceremony! Last year the study abroad group went up there but not this year, so maybe next year! The weather in Japan this year has been very unusual and unpredictable as many students had experienced! The rainy season has not been officially ended and natural disasters including landslide and tornado continue in Japan. Yes, 11am 1101 has closed and 10am 1101 has onle one seat left!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Summer program ended with exhausted faces!

Four students staying at the same family were picked up by a shuttle taxi to Osaka Itami Airport. Other three students came to my house last night so that all three would be picked up by a shuttle taxi at 5:30AM! GTS left home before 5 to get to the train station where the rest would meet GTS and go to airport by train! All made it without problem and took of Osaka for Tokyo to be transferred to the international flight to Chicago! GTS will run some errand after the program to prepare for the next program in 2010! GTS is planning to have a little different ones next year to improve program! Oh! By the way, 1101 in fall has only 25 seats left! Morning classes are almost full!!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Farewell Party went well with host families!

The final day of the study abroad program successfully passed with a lively farewell party with host families! Every teacher, every student, every host family mom greeted one after another. Students presented their thank you letter to their host families and made a final class presentation in front of everyone. The major event was "SUIKA-wari (breaking watermelon)!"
Two watermelon were completely smashed by one student and one kid from host families! Early flight tomorrow morning will bring everyone back to Chicago where the routine life be resumed! No accidents, no sickness, no bad news..... another great summer program was almost completed! Next year? Yes, we will be back here again! Stay tuned!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Osaka Castle in light rain engulfed us!

Final week for the program began and everyone took the final exam this morning! Regardless of how they did on the exam, I hope everyone got unique experience and learned what other people cannot usually learn! Heavy rain in the morning stopped by the time we began travelling to Osaka Castle though it rained heavily while we were in the train to Osaka! Rain re-stoppped when walking to the Castle t the station! Amazing! I will miss everyone in the trip soon! Life goes on but hopefully many will come back to my class or function back in Chicago!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Ninja show! Real Film shooting, etc. at Movie Village

The group visited the Toei Movie Village where some Ninja show, Haunted house and other real movie shootings were going on. Some are interested in certain aspects of Japanese cinemas and its culture. Some are not so much but it was the first official program during the summer program! Osaka Tenjin Festival will be tomorrow and many decorated boat floats will be marching in the river as well as huge fire works will take place as a finale. 5 days left for the program and hopefully everyone miss Kyoto, oh yes, GTS, too!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Bump into the former students' group in Arashiyama!

Today was the Sushi making and tasting day at school! Everyone tried making his/her own roll sushi after which we directly went to Daikakuji-temple where everyone did Han-nya-shin-gyo script writing! Walking in its garden and Sagano-meguri took us back to the Randen Station where GTS and students bumped into former students (some are past study abroad students with me and some were regular students of mine in class)! I am glad to see my students leading their own trip to Kyoto!! Really happy about it. We may see with each other at Tenjin Festival this weekend!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Animals in Kyoto welcomed everyone!

Revised schedule due to the weather brought us to the Kyoto City Zoo today where a baby giraffe was born 10 days ago! Feeding time for animals matched our visit so some enjoyed them. Near the zoo, there is a Nanzenji-temple and GTS 'home' which is located next too so-called a love hotel. Every student met GTS' mom and got some gifts and took pictures of 'that love hotel "Chapel Cinderella" not GTS' condo!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Phoenix Pavilion in Rain!

Rain has been quite active in the rainy season this year! Daily schedule must have been altered along with the weather. Getting to Phoenix Pavilion doesn't cause too much trouble with raining. Well, rain actually was weakened by the time we walk around the Pavilion! Keihan Train took us to the Pavilion and brought us back from there. Everyone compared the Amida-house with the design on the Japanese 10 yen coin! 10 days left for the program! Oh, yes Japanese 1101 at COD has only 40 seats left (60 seats have been filled!)

Friday, July 17, 2009

Floats Parade of Gion Fest in cool Kyoto! and to Tokyo!

Unlike recent years, Gion Festival Floats marching was under the cool cloudy day in Kyoto! This event is one of the best cultural events during the program and next one will be next week in Osaka Tenjin Festival! After dismissing during the Float Marching, those who are heading Tokyo gathered at Kyoto Station at night. GTS made sure everyone got on the night bus for Tokyo and two cell phones are handed over to the group. It has been confirmed that everyone on the bus safely arrived in Tokyo for this long weekend!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Eikando-temple saved us from the rain!

After lunch around the academy, we took 30 min bus ride to get to Nyakuoji-Shrine and Eikando-temple. As soon as entering the main hall of Eikando, it began raining. While touring within the hall, rain added some nice mysterious feeling into the group. We found out what it was when we lost three students on the way back to the original bus stop we got off! Those three must have been turning left when we turned right! The rest of the group headed to Kyoto Handicraft Center where some bought Yukata for Gion Festival! Most of them will leave for Tokyo by night bus after Gion Festival and will be back early morning of Monday, the Ocean Day holiday!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Mt. Kurama was a piece of cake after Fushimi!

Everyone has learned from the previous day and tried to be stick together to wait for GTS and a little EMA coming down from the Mt. Kurama! The Eizan Train took us from Demachi St. to Kurama before climbing up to the Temple and walking down to another side of the mountain where Kifune Shrine holds the god of water! Hot and humid days continue!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Fushimi Inari Grand Shrine ate 4 students!

One of the most famous shrines in Japan welcomed us in a super hot day and the group were separated into two groups without intention. Yet, life went ON! Millions of Torii-gates and steps challenged us followed by the Higashiyama Mountain trail along with a small stream! It was the first pedestrian heaven night before the Gion Festival Float Marching (7/17). Students may enjoy these pedestrian heaven one of these three nights! Now all the floats are ready! Kurama-temple in the mountain is now waiting for us today!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Monkey Park in super hot/humid day!

Everyone in the group is athletic so it shouldn't have any problem but one student's sandal broke and climbed up the mountain with bare foot! Incredible!! Monkeys are all enjoying swimming in the pond and food given by human being in the cage! Clear view of the city energized us and now it is just a middle day of the program! Gion festival is coming up and everyone is now getting ready for the last half of the summer program! So many Torii-gates at Fushimi Grand Shrine are now waiting for us today!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Deer welcomed us with the Giant Buddha!

Express bus from the school took us to Kyoto Station from which we left for Nara by Kintetsu Railway! One our train ride brought us to Nara Park and Todai-ji temple where great buddha was looking down on us! Super humid weather caused a lot of sweat while getting up to the Nigatsu-do (February Hall) and Shigatsu-do (April Hall). From the stage on the top of the hall, Nara-city including beautiful mountains were visible! On the way back at the Nara station, GTS bumped into his old friend, professor of Nara Women's University since the last meeting 20 over 20 years ago! GTS learned that another friend has just passed away b/o cancer!

Nishijin Txtile Kimono Fashion Show!

After lunch we had a long walk to the Nishijin Textile Center to see the Kimono Fashion show after which we dropped in 'Seimei Shrine' to examine Japanese exoticism. Though we all got purified, when we arrived at Nijo Castle, the main gate was closed and it said "Kyuu-joo-bi (Castle resting day)"! I did not realize that the castle could rest. If I were the anti-gov't samurai force, this day is the very day I should attack! Well, instead we quietly re-direct ourselves to Heian Jingu Shrine garden!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Rainy day continues but better than too humid!

Daily schedule has been modified due to the weather last few days but actually a lot better than too many humid days! Arashiyama park and Tenryu-ji temple on Monday and Nishijin textile center on Tuesday were superb! As soon as we got to the textile center, the Kimono Fashion show began so elegantly. We walked to Nijo Castle which was unfortunately closed yesterday, so we went to Heian Jingu Shrine instead to enjoy the most beautiful garden! Our adventure continues!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

First full weekend for everyone!

While GTS is busy running around for many errands caused by the father's passing, every one in the program seems to begin oriented and enjoying the local life in Kyoto. The weather has been unexpectedly good for us, and we are not dying of the humidity yet! The Milky Way festival is coming up in a few days and all the Gion Festival floats are now ready! Some began eating soft serve every often!! I love 'athletic' students of this year and GTS is rather having difficulty with keeping up with everyone! What? Am I getting old? Yes, certainly I am!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Tofukuji-temple visit for the first time in the program!

Two city buses took us to the south east side of Kyoto city where Tofukuji-temple and its garden spread! This is the first visit during this summer COD program which began in 1999. The nice weather (not humid! even breeze let us feel good!) Students are planning to go to Tokyo during the long weekend of 7/17 right after the Gion Festival. Their plan is leaving Kyoto for Tokyo by night bus on Friday and return in the same way on Sunday, so that they have enough resting time on Monday, the National Ocean Day! First weekend must excite everyone and GTS and Ema are heading to the Zoo, 3 minutes away from home!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Steep slope to Kiyomizu temple didn't kill anyone this year!

The bus took us to the Main torii-gate of Yasaka shrine where floats for Gion festival had been stored! Nice breeze helped everyone move forward to steep slope to the Kiyomizu temple! Superb view from the temple overwhelmed us and get us ready for tomorrow! Some directly go home, some went to the city center for shopping! GTS? huh! get back to see Ema and drink a can of KIRIN! Rain has been only during the night and day time so far is ideal for us!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Silver Pavilion in the muggy day!

The rainy season causes the muggy day on which everyone is suffering from the sweat! Yet, life goes on and we dismissed for lunch right in front of the hospital where GTS was born and fueled for walking up to the Silver Pavilion! Clear view from the eastern mountain in the garden of silver Pavilion energized everyone to walk along the Philosopher's Trail to get to the Bus stop. We will have a nice view from the south eastern mountain temple tomorrow! No one got sick nor tired from studying and walking! I love it!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Golden Pavilion welcomed us!

It began with light rain today but kept us from being caught in rain unlike yesterday! The Golden Pavilion was shining in light rain and high humidity got us sweaty! A couple of students got a little lost on their way to school this morning, which was quite normal and the best thing in this group is everyone is rather athletic and keep up with GTS fast walking! Hey, I love it! We will conquer the Silver Pavilion after having lunch near the hospital where GTS was born forty some years ago!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Nobody was late for the first day in school!

Everyone in Study Abroad Group came to school on time!! Pretty amazing! New strict feature of 「Kiritsu(stand up straight)」 and 「Rei(vow)」 let students feel like studying JAPANESE! During the break everyone began socializing with Chinese and Korean students in Japanese which is the only common language among themselves. Good Start! After class, everyone enjoyed cheap meal at Ritsumeikan University's cafeteria and headed to the Rock Garden of Ryoanji! During the long walk from the temple to the familiar bus stop we were all caught in rain but hey we are in the rainy season now! Smooth start! I liked it. Very cooperative!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Study Abroad Group reached Kyoto safely!

After the peace study in Hiroshima, the group arrived in Kyoto by bullet train by which everyone enjoyed nicer ride than by airplane. Everyone has been reminded of Kyoto's hot and humid weather right away! Students were picked up by each host family one by one and will begin commuting to school by themselves tomorrow! Let's bet how many students will have a trouble getting to school on the first day tomorrow. I certainly hope it would be ZERO but....

Friday, June 26, 2009

Study Abroad Group arrived in Hiroshima on time!

Last year COD group went to Nagoya via Shang-hai, China because of United Air's mechanical problems! Learning from it, we came to Japan with All Nippon Airways with very comfortable ride! Lay over time was a bit longer but a lot better than going through China! From Hiroshima Airport an airport bus took us to Hiroshima Train station where we switched to the street car to get to Hotel. Next day, everyone walked around the Peace Park as well as its museum to learn. After lunch the A-Bomb survivor's lecture let everyone think of how to live towards the better future. Students energy was endless and blasted at the Hiroshima's newly built Mazda Ball Park for the professional baseball game 'Carps vs. Dragons.' Everyone is in good condition now to be ready for the program!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Ready to fly to Japan for summer study abroad!

In less than half a day, COD summer study abroad group will take off from Chicago heading to Hiroshima via Narita(Tokyo) by All Nippon Airways. Hiroshima Peace study schedule has just been re-confirmed with the Peace Memorial Hall and 10 baseball game tickets have been secured for experiencing the Japanese-style baseball game entertainment at the newly built ball park with students from Hiroshima Jogakuin University. Japan is now eagerly waiting for GTS and his lovely students! Stay tuned for our arrival in Japan.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Sad News from Japan before getting there!

Finally GTS was liberated from AP Scoring 'Prison' in Kansas City and got back to lovely Chicago and become ready for Summer Program beginning next week! Well, then a big sad news came in from Japan that GTS's father passed away rather suddenly today. It will give no effect on the COD summer program and the group with GTS will get to Tokyo/Hiroshima on 6/25 (Thursday) and then to Kyoto on 6/28 (Sunday). I wish he could make it until I get there! I heard he was quite fine and walked around until yesterday. At a moment things seems to be a mess but should be settled soon. As he used to tell me to prioritize professional activities, my life goes on! By the way, Hiroshima Jogakuin University students are ready to entertain COD students to go the ballgame (Carp vs. Dragons) and Miyajima (floarting huge Torii gate).

Thursday, June 11, 2009

AP Scoring in Kansas City continues!

Over a week has just passed for GTS's life in Kansas City, MO. Being kept for all day long everyday in a little partitioned room in convention center is truly challenging! At least, I feel good about the fact that about 2000 high school students were able to take the exam which needs a really high proficiency level in Japanese. It is also a good opportunity for meeting with teachers from colleges and high schools all over the US including actually Japan though the total number of teachers here for scoring are just about 45! Well, 74 spots are left for 1101 in fall semester at COD and seems to be a good pace to fill each spot at a moment. In 2 weeks, COD summer program group will get to Hiroshima! How exciting!!

Friday, June 5, 2009

GTS in Kansas City for AP Scoring!

GTS is now in Kansas City in MO for AP Japanese scoring and have been already very tired from sitting in front of Laptop Screen (provided by ETS) from early morning to evening every day. Though it is partly enjoyable because of meeting with many Japanese teachers across the country, making a reliable scoring guideline is a pain. Towards the next weekend I am planning to go to a ballgame of Kansas City Royals vs. Reds and that will be the only entertainment during the 2-week stay here in Kansas City! I forgot to mention! One block away has a newly opened (this January) grocery store selling Kirin and Sapporo, and that is a bit comforting!!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

A dozen GTS Loyalists showed up at the dinner!

Though the dinner was held at the end of the month instead of the beginning of June, there were a dozen people showed up and enjoyed the last seasonal dinner before the next academic year! Next one will be on the first Friday of September (9/4) possibly joined by some Japanese students from Japan! Registration for fall courses are moving well and 80 spots are left for 1101 as of the end of May. 2201 and 2251 are wide open! Now 2251 class meeting time has been decided and it will be between 2:00ish-pm and 4:30ish-pm on Thursday, once a week. The orientation for Summer Study Abroad program is currently underway and our group will depart on Wednesday 6/24 flying directly to Tokyo by All Nippon Airways and transfer to the domestic flight to Hiroshima where we will conduct the Peace Studies as well as enjoying the professional baseball at the newly built MAZDA stadium!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

JCC/GTS final dinner this season comes up!

Time flies and I hope everyone is ready for the summer whether it is about summer classes, or summer trips, or even just relaxing! JCC/GTS dinner is coming this Friday (5/29) and the next one will be on September (9/4) on which a few Japanese students from Hiroshima might join us!
GTS is busy preparing for the Study Abroad orientation this Saturday and Sunday. GTS will be in Kansas City, MO between 6/3 and 6/16 for AP Scoring! 83 Slots open for 1101 now!!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

86 Slots left for 1101 in Fall!

14 students have already registered for Elementary Japanese 1101 (100 students maximum (25x4classes). Honor Seminar Global Classroom project has 14 slots left! 2201 and 2251 are wide open! There will be Spring trip during the spring break next year but also Christmas trip is planned not by COD but by another institution/organization in December! Those who are in COD summer study abroad program will meet as a group in the weekend orientation on 5/30-31. Host family for each student has been selected as well!. JCC dinner is coming up on Friday 5/29 (next week).
Waubonsee Community College Elementary Japanese class has 4 students at a moment and 21 seats left!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Registration for the Fall semester is goin' on!

Registration for the fall semester classes have begun and 1101 already has a few students and 2201 has one now. Honor seminar (Global Classroom Project with Hiroshima Women's College) has 5 in it!. There will be 2 daily classes for 1101 (10am and 11am) and 2 night classes (5pm on Tue & Thu by Prof. Kamiya, 7pm on Mon & Wed by GTS). 2201 will be at 5pm on Mon & Wed, 2251 will be at 12:15pm on Thu. Honor seminar with Sociology class will be 6-9pm on Thursday (Students must register another Sociology class on Tuesday)! I hope to see many new students in fall!

Friday, May 15, 2009

25 survived in 1102, 7 survived in 2202!

The final exams have completed. 25 students survived in "1102" (Elementary Japanese) --13 A's, 6 B's, 3 C's, 1 D, 2 S's. 7 students survived in "2202" (Intermediate Japanese) -- 1 A, 2 B's, 1 C, 1 D, 1 S. A couple of students from 2202 plan to continue onto 2251 this fall. About a dozen students from 1102 plan to continue onto 2201 while some want to repeat 1101-2 to solidify what has been learned. 'Quick listening test' shows that everyone in class gained her/his proficiency drastically regardless of the letter grade of the class! Both 1101 and 2201 this fall will use the textbook "Genki I or II" as GTS regular practice of switching textbooks every often!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

The Final Week is coming!

While GTS is enjoying 'just taking a look at one-week-old RINA' at home, students must be busy preparing for final exams. Japanese finals are composed of several distinguished parts: SPOT (Proficiency growth check), Regular chapter/segment test/quiz, and Un-predictable festival (not for the elementary level). Those who are studying abroad in summer must begin excited now. There will be 12 students in GTS summer study abroad. 9 are in regular COD summer abroad program and 3 are from high school joining COD program separately but travel/study together. GTS is now excited!

Monday, May 4, 2009

GTS 2nd daughter "RINA" was Born!

At 6:36am on Monday, May the 4th, GTS second daughter "RINA" (3060grams) was born at the Good Samaritan Hospital in Downers Grove!! Thank you very much for those who celebrate this birth and GTS is sure that "RINA" will have as many servants as EMA has! May 4th is Japan's National Holiday "Green Day" and her middle name will be May as you might be able to imagine! Rina will see you all soon!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

JCC dinner was packed!

Many former students joined the dinner after a long silence as well as new faces! They are currently enrolled at North Central College, DePaul University, etc. Those who are continuing to take Japanese courses at other institutions often realized and mentioned how KIND GTS had been after feeling "a piece of cake" at tests and quizzes of the "tranferred institutions" and feel great!! (Only those who attended GTS classes probably know what this means!) Well, final exam is coming up and I hope there will be many smiles! Next JCC/GTS dinner will be May 29, 2009! (NOT JUNE!)

Thursday, April 30, 2009

JCC/GTS dinner tomorrow!

Time really flies! The first Friday of May is coming up tomorrow and we have only ONE week left for this semester! GTS's second daughter hasn't been born yet but she might show up in this world during the DINNER! The final exam week is coming up soon and GTS really hopes everyone can do well at any exams! For Japanese? Hey, surviving and passing are the most important as everyone might have been realized!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

To the Final Chapter for Elementary Japanese Class!

Only one chapter is left for Japanese 1102 and every survivor will be ready for the next step of the challenge at Japanese 2201 in Fall. Chapter 11 test has just completed and the average score was 75~80%. There will be one more chapter to go before the summer break (break? if any). Some survivors may transfer to another institution successfully but those who stay in COD are expected to continue onto Japanese 2201. The 2201 is projected to be a small class with about a dozen students and will be held on Monday and Wednesday between 5 and 7pm as usual.
Wow, next week Friday will be the JCC/GTS dinner night already! GTS's second daughter may arrive in a few days! I hope the dinner will be the kind of celebration for a new life!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

JET Interviewer Appreciation Dinner!

I attended the JET Interviewers appreciation dinner at the official residence of Consul General in Evanston. I have learned that about 140 people are going to Japan as a JET this summer and this Chicago group is the largest group in the World! Compared to 180 JETs last year, this number seems to be fairly low even though the number of position stays the same in Japan. This is probably because many JETs renewed their contract since it is difficult to find a job back in the states under this recession. So it is a bit unlucky for those who applied this year. Usually many alternate candidates end up going to Japan, which is good but not likely this year! I hope all the former GTS students can go!! Dinner? It was super and since it was a Buffet style, GTS was the first one in the line out of 40 people and made 3 round trips!!! mmmmmm~!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Help the Program Review Process!

Some knows already about the Program Review at COD. If you are/were taking Japanese class at COD, please visit the flollowing website and complete the survey!
1102 is now getting into Chapter 11 and the end of the book is nearing! The survivors in the class seem to be ready to struggle and the average score of Chapter 10 was about 80%! I am hoping that all survivors continue to go on to 2201 in Fall!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

over 30! fellows showed up at the dinner!

Surprisingly many fellows showed up at the dinner last night! From NIU, DePaul U, U of Chicago, Loyola, Eastern Michigan U, North Central C, Elmhurst C, etc. Many folks have just bump into each other and enjoyed reunion! Some have just come back from Japan trip with GTS! Time really flew away. I am very glad to have such a nice lively group every month! Next one will be May 1!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

JCC dinner tomorrow!

Jet lag is still around me but I am looking forward to have the movie and dinner tomorrow! Time flies! Already April! Japan trip was great but a little too chilly unfortunately. The chilling weather continues here in Chicago with possibly snow! Ahhhhhh! Students in 1102 are getting fewer and fewer but I believe that those who survived will be successful in their lives. There are still some spot left for the study abroad program in summer! Join us!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Tail-wind made us get to SFO in 9 hours!

Some enjoyed final shopping at Kyoto station area and Kansai International Airport area. The lucky tail-wind brought us back to the United States in 9 hours but Chicago snowy/windy weather stopped us at San Francisco much longer than scheduled. Two students became a volunteer to give up their seats for desperately needy passengers since United gave "$300 voucher to stay over night in SFO, $600 value United money voucher, and First class seating to Chicago tomorrow!" GTS could have done that if no class will be tomorrow, but..... We all arrived in Chicago at 9pm safely!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Osaka Sakura wasn't quite ready for us but....

The final day of the trip was to go to Osaka Castle hoping that we might see more blooming Sakura, yet wasn't quite ready for us. We did see some Sakura blooming "wrong" in a sense! Trip members gathered at night to enjoy final group dinner. GTS as well as trip members are NOT ready to go back to Chicago but the class begins on Monday! I have to prepare for it as soon as getting back to Chicago at 8pm on Sunday!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Deer welcomed us but not the weather!

It was cold and wet!!! Everyone enjoyed feeding many deer in Nara Park, Todai-ji temple, and other complex buildings but the sun only showed up occasionally though some Sakura were beautifully blooming. Upon returning to Kyoto after lunch, we went straight to Nishijin Textile center to hopefully catch the final Kimono show which we made it. Few Westerners among tons of Chinese tourists enjoyed almost final shopping. GTS is really really hoping to get a nice weather for OSAKA visit tomorrow!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Not warming UP but a bit blooming on!

Chilly day continued today and we did further chilling area of Daikaku-ji temple where everyone including little Ema tried brush writing of Buddhist scripture of Han-nya-shin-gyo (般若心経) in a warmest room 'Godai-do.' We left the temple for Nonomiya-shrine through the Sagano walking bamboo trail while we lost two members on our way. During the lunch time, the lost two contacted me and joined the group luckily. Then Hankyu train took us back to the center of the city where we visited Maruyama-park with 50% Sakura blooming and Kodai-ji temple and Ryozen Kannon (huge mercy Buddha statue outside). Night was enjoyed by the traditional performances show!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Alley to the Nijo Castle and Heian Shrine Garden!

From the hotel, we took the unique route of alleys to the Nijo Castle where some Sakura began blooming. Then city subway took us from the castle to the Heian Jingu Shrine whose garden is extravagant! The handicraft center was just next to the Heian Jingu Shrine and everyone seemed to contribute to Japan's economy for about 3 hours during which GTS took a quick trip to pick up 'bullet Train' tickets for few members to travel to Tokyo tomorrow as deviation. GTS will make a long round trip to Yamaguchi tomorrow to attend the forum! The group will be taken care of a teacher of Kyoto International Academy and will go to Arashiyama area where Sakura can be in full bloom! Yes, the Flea market at Kitano Tenmangu Shrine won't be missed tomorrow though the weather might not help us!

Monday, March 23, 2009

New Silver Pavilion uncovered and The Rock Garden covered!

Night rain has passed but chilling weather came in! Arriving the Golden Pavilion before its opening made our group experience chilling wind. Beautiful golden structure couldn't quite warm us up until walking down to the Rock Garden as a little exercise. The Rock Garden was seen in the scaffolding to make us meditate in a strange manner. Everyone had a lunch at a cafeteria of Ritsumeikan University where GTS 'studied' years ago. The express city bus took us to the right in front of the hospital where GTS was born in early 60's. The philosopher's trail led us to the Silver Pavilion which has just uncovered a few days ago after re-roofing. The new Japanese cypress roof looked like a Gold leaves and reminds us of the Golden Pavilion. Along the philosopher's trail some bought a nice hot coffee and enjoyed it while getting to the bus stop from which the direct bus to the hotel left!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

1001 Mercy Buddha Statues & Phoenix welcomed us!

90% precipitation forecast didn't quite rain until the end of the today's schedule, which was really nice!! The packed city bus took us to "Sanjusangen-do (三十三間堂)" where 1001 'Buddha for Mercy" statues welcomed us! Several kinds of cherry blossoms around the main building has just begun blooming to say hello to our group. Then Keihan train took us to the Phoenix Pavilion and Ema/GTS enjoyed Tea-Udon Noodles (which Ema says "Midori no Udon") as a lunch. Sakura there hasn't begun active yet but we could easily imagine what will happen in a few days! The end of the trip was our 'youngster terminal, Shijo Kawaramachi' where most trip members were dismissed for shopping, drinking, eating, strolling, etc. Tomorrow, one of Kyoto International Academy teachers will join our group to be introduced so that SHE can take care of my absence on Wednesday when GTS attends the forum in Yamaguchi Prefectural University some 400 miles away from Kyoto!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

GTS/Ema and 11 travelers safely arrived in Kyoto!

At first in the O'Hare at 5am, there had been a problem for our flight/aircraft. Shortly after, they announced the change of aircraft and we got to San Francisco on time. We also left there on time and arrived in Kansai/Osaka before the scheduled time. Yet, because of many international flights' arrival at the same time, going through the custom took a while and we decided to take a direct bus trip to hotel from the Airport. Some had drinks at the airport while waiting the bus. After all everyone got to the hotel at 8pm! Well, some had still some energy left to go out to eat their dinner!. GTS and Ema returned home at 9:30pm but not sleepy as you can imagine the time difference! The program begins tomorrow with meeting with 2002 images of Buddha of Mercy (Kannon)!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

GTS leaves for Japan in a few hours!

Spring "Sakura-viewing" Field trip to Japan will begin shortly with 11 members including 4 COD faculty members. Some faculty members of Yamaguchi Prefectural University(YPU) will join a part of the trip to "learn" its management from GTS. GTS will be one of the invited panelists in the Special Forum held in YPU on Wednesday during the field trip. While GTS makes Bullet Train trip to Yamaguchi (2.5 hours one way!), a teaching staff of Kyoto International Academy (KIA) will take care of the COD group. About dozen students signed up for summer study abroad in Kyoto (study at KIA in the morning!). We will get to Hiroshima via Narita (Tokyo) first by All Nippon Airways for a few days to study about "PEACE" prior to go to Kyoto by Bullet Train to meet all the host families and KIA staff.

Monday, March 16, 2009

GTS as an elected Board member for ATJ!

GTS has been elected through the general member election to serve as a three-year term board member of 'Association of Teachers of Japanese (ATJ),' one of the largest professional organization for Japanese studies in the USA. This organization, which was founded in 1963, has been playing an active role in the field of Japanese studies for as many years as GTS's life! GTS will bring the most up-dated information and opportunities to students who are interested in Japanese studies! GTS and 11 field study trip members will be in Kyoto this weekend!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

GTS Trio's self invitation to Okonomiyaki Party!

GTS Trip and its associate invited themselves to GTS house where they wanted to eat Okonomiyaki (Hirosima Yaki) that they enjoyed during their study abroad trip last year! As usual, GTS Trio's tention had been constantly high and ate as much Okonomiyaki as possible before having after-Okonomiyaki Caribou coffee. Their unforgettable experience in Japan seemed to bond them together. Those trio members got friends among others through GTS Japanese class and JCC/GTS monthly dinner in the first place and grow themselves together in various capacity. I hope GTS class/trip/social-gathering continue to contribute to bringing new friendships to all.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Annual Japan Fest at OPRFHS!

The annual Japan festival was held at Oak Park & River Forest High School. Students in Japanese class there are really involved with its preparation and teachers and community members are also put utmost effort in it. Ema enjoyed two Taiko/Drum performances and Japanese traditional dance. She got her Doraemon face painting while doing brush calligraphy writing of Kanji (Kawa or 川). There are many other booths: California role booth, Yakisoba booth, Japanese snack booth, Origami booth, Nintendo booth, etc. From GTS classes, a few from 1102 and 2202 showed up with their friends and parents. I hope some will make it next year!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Over 15 members enjoyed JCC Dinner!

Under the unusually warm weather, over 15 people gathered for JCC monthly dinner and enjoyed chatting among others. Two came from U of I who are scheduled to leave next week for Japan for 1-semester study abroad before graduation, one who participated on the last summer study abroad program came from Waubonsee Community College area with over an hour drive. One, who is going to Japan with me during Spring break, came as well. 'GTS Trio minus one plus its ASSOCIATES' and current students in class also laugh and talk over the dinner! Next JCC dinner will be on 4/3/2009.
Why $50 short? Well, I hope that helped some students!!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

First Friday of March is coming now!

Time really flies! The first Friday is coming in 2 days! I hope to see many GTS family members at dinner. The movie begins at 4 as usual. (see the JCC website!) Tomorrow (3/5/2009) is the first classroom meeting for the Spring break Japan trip during which I attend the Symposium held in 'Yamaguchi Prefectural University' as a panelist. There is a Japan Festival at Oak Park River Forest High School (OPRF) next Friday (3/13) beginning at 4:30pm. I hope to see some of you there as well. BTW, I went to Cook County Courthouse as a Juror-to-be for 1st degree murder case yesterday but fortunately I was dismissed early afternoon:) Lucky!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Academy Awards

Oscars went to to two Japanese pieces last weekend. One was a short animetion film by Robot, LTD "Tsumiki no ie" and another one was a best foreign film "Okuribito." As a Japanese, I am proud of them and happy for them. Yet, the short-speech of acceptance of the award unfortunately proved to the WORLD that 'Japanese people are not good at speaking English.' Maybe it's ok in Japan but I wish they could prepare a very small cheating paper to even read just like other Oscar recipients and/or could make a very brief speech in Japanese just like Penelope Cruz speaking in Spanish!! GTS will work for the preliminary selection judge tomorrow for the Japanese speech contest scheduled late in March. GTS will also co-lead the workshop for Japanese education for Japanese heritage learners on Saturday and the annual Japanese Teachers' Workshop on Sunday at the consulate general of Japan in Chicago! Next week is already in March and JCC dinner night is coming up!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

JET Interview goes on and on

Japanese governmental program for native English-speaking college graduates to go to Japan to assist English education in public schools and to internationalize various public offices in Japan is now conducting the interview this week. As one of the interviewers, I want to suggest every candidate to know more about your own country 'USA' if you are trying to become one! GTS is 'mean' in class and also "mean" during the interview as you can imagine!

COD's official news page introduces GTS on the college website.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

Japan imported the idea of 'Valentine's Day' long time ago as a day for woman to be able to confess her feeling for the particular man in 'male-oriented/initiated' traditional society.' Then it became almost the day for woman giving 'chocolate' to every man who is somehow supportive or supposedly-supportive besides the real man in her mind. The survey of this year shows that over 70% of men are thinking of gift giving for this day from man to woman. Change seemed to come! Well, I did conduct the workshop for all Japanese language teachers of the Chicago Public Schools on Friday the 13th! Next week is the week of JET interview at the consulate. Good luck on your interview if you are a candidate! 1102 is wrapping up Chapter 8 and ready for the test. 2202 is as we modified the way of testing having usual rather big quiz again every class and moving into Lesson 3. WCC 102 is finally getting into Chapter 7. Spring break Japan trip is going to be a small-sized (11 people) this time reflecting the worsening economy. Summer Study Abroad is still accepting applications!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

JCC (GTS Birthday) Dinner went well!

First Friday of February has just passed. about 15 people showed up at the dinner including a former student who was in Kyoto on the day of 9-11 attack of 2001 during GTS September trip. She also participated in COD summer study abroad program in 2002 and continued to study in Ritsumeikan University (where GTS graduated from) between 2003-2004. She has just begun working at Japanese company despite this bad US economy! Well, GTS families gathered from NIU, DePaul Univ, Eastern Michigan Univ, etc and had fun. Next dinner will be March 6, 2009!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

First Chapter Test for 1102 passed!

GTS 1102 students took the Nakama Chapter 7 test. The average score was 80% and went well despite the fact that we didn't have fully enough time to cover as usual! The 2202/2252 testing style has been shifted from previous practice and every student rather has a medium size review quiz every class to accommodate with individual student's life environment. No Exam? Hahha. No such luxury life in the GTS class. First Friday is coming up now and let's celebrate GTS birthday as well as students whose birthday is near.
Remember test/quiz score does NOT and will NOT define or evaluate any test/quiz taker's humanity! It is important to try and work hard and never give up!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

GTS nominated for the Board member of ATJ

There are two large professional organizations for the Japanese academic field in the U.S. GTS served as a President of National Council of Japanese Language Teachers (NCJLT) in 2004-05 while being its board member between 2003-06. This year, GTS has been nominated for a candidate for a board member of Association of Teachers of Japanese (ATJ). The election is coming up now and the elected board will be announced at the end of March. GTS's opponent is a high school teacher in Hawaii and a good friend of GTS, so she can be an excellent board member of ATJ as well. GTS expresses humble gratitude to the nominating committee of ATJ, and wishes the organization's future prosperity! This is GTS' nomination reference site!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Settled in the Japanese class?

COD classes have passed about 10days and each class is gradually getting settled. 1102 are still shrinking slowly and it will be settled after the first chapter test at the beginning of February. Small class 1102 at night unexpectedly enabled us to actually move around in class and use some Japanese! Hopefully we can continue! Waubonsee class (WCC) will begin on Monday (1/26) with 6 students (maybe a couple more by the actual class?) (Ahh.... lost 75% of original members!!) Chinese class at WCC was canceled (only 1 student). Spring break field study in Japan seems to have over 10 people and we will go to JAPAN! Study Abroad program application deadline is coming up, so please let GTS know if you are interested so that I can keep your spot!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Spring Semester Begins Tomorrow!

Regardless of whether or not students are ready to go to school, COD classes will begin tomorrow and have a first quiz in the first class! About 40% retention in Japanese 1101 brought just over 40 students in 1102 and luckily enough to be spread into 3 different classes! About a dozen students continue to learn Japanese at 2202 and a handful students are in 2252. GTS certainly hope to have fun together and enjoy the moment with with students in class. The Japan Field Study Program during the Spring break (3/20-29) and the Summer Japan Study Abroad Program (6/23-7/30) are now accepting the application!

Friday, January 9, 2009

First dinner night finished in snow!

Over 15 people gathered at first JCC/GTS Dinner of 2009 in snow! 5 showed up and enjoyed the film with little EMA before the dinner. A couple of them decided to go to JAPAN field study program during the spring break. Many entertained Little Ema and she enjoyed the most. She was waiting for today since 2 days ago and went well for her thanks to all her KERAI (servants). Next dinner will be February 6. And remember GTS birthday will be February 4!!! I hope everyone is ready to get back to school and take the first quiz on the first day!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

First JCC Dinner of 2009 is coming up!

I hope everyone enjoyed the Christmas Parties and the New Year Parties. The spring semester is just around the corner but the JCC dinner comes before it. I hope to see many of you tomorrow. 1102 night class is in danger so I ask those who registered for the morning class to re-register for the night class. You can still come to any class anyway! Those who want to study abroad with GTS, make your application form ready! There are available seats for Spring Break Trip to Japan as well! Living with Ema, who became 3-year old 2 weeks ago, for over two weeks has been so much fun! Going out, cooking, reading, singing, and driving together has taught me a lot!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

A Happy New Year!

I hope everyone could welcome the January 1st of 2009, the year of Ox/Cow! One of your resolution should be the completion of Japanese class! Did you all enjoy the 61st second of 23:59 of 12/31/2008? This is the leap second year and GTS's sincere wish is 'leap leap leap for everyone!
JCC first dinner of 2009 is coming up on Friday 1/9/2009 (next week) See you all! BTW, Japan has its own "American Football League (mini)" and Ritsumeikan University won the RICE BOWL (1/3/2009) over Panasonic and became No.1 in Japan. (Very comical but...). As a Ritsumeikan graduate, I should report it to you. Ritsumeikan Alumni Association in Chicago always welcomes you if you have a little something to do with Ritsumeikan!