Thursday, June 30, 2011

Almost rain but not quite in Kiyomizu Temple!

At the time we left for the afternoon excursion, we saw a little drop of rain but by the time we got off the bus at Kyoto Universoty area for lunch, the sign of rain was replaced by the sweaty sunshine!

From Gion, Yasaka shrine, Maruyama Park, Kodaiji-temple, Ryozan Kannon (largest Kannon statue outside), 2-year slope, 3-year slope then Kiyomizu temple, Jishu shrine, we walked and walked until going down to the main street via Chawan (Tea Bowl) slope!

Ended with sweat without rain today, too.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Philosophized between Silver Pavilion and Nyakuoji-shrine!

Another extremely hot and humid day let us philosophize on the Trail (哲学の道) between the Silver Pavilion (銀閣寺) and Nyakuoji-shrine (若王子神社).

In the Silver Pavilion, GTS bumped into Mr. Kurt Thompson from Oregon. He is a current president of National Council of Japanese Language Teachers and leading 27 middle schoolers to Japan now!

I love Kyoto which gives us surprizing reunion with fellow teachers from the U.S. GTS may happen to meet some teachers tomorrow, too!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Golden Pavilion Embraced us with heat!

A teacher of one of three classes for our students welcomed her birthday today and our students celebrated her birthday in class while learning Japanese.

After having lunch at Ritsumeikan University Cafeteria again, we left for the Golden Pavilion (Kinkakuji-temple) while the strong sunshine and ultra violet beam attacking us.

Shining Gold, energetic carp, and 600-year old Bonsai pine tree welcomed us and saw us off!

Another humid rain-less day greeted us!!!!

GTS will meet a high school teacher from IOWA tonight!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Rock Garden Rocked us with heat!

First day of schooling and only two students were a bit late, otherwise, everything went smoothly. GTS was faked by the dark cloud but today was ended up with rain-less!

We ate lunch at Ritsumeikan University where GTS was graduated over 20 years ago. Those who can speak Japanese a little better helped others in the cafeteria.

1 minute walk from Cafeteria led us to the Rock Garden of Ryoanji-temple where we stayed over 30 minutes right in front of the beautiful moss carpet!!!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

1st Maigo Found!

Everyone got the first weekend today and some went to the city center, some went around the host family house, and others met Japanese friends. At the end of the day, I got a phone call to my cell saying, "we lost her." Well, there was nothing I could do but waiting. My mom picked up the phone at home. According to my mom, she does not know Japanese but she said "maigo (lost child)." That worried me and called her host family and found out that "Maigo (she) was found safe!" Good to hear that! Another no-rain humid day has passed!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Commuting Practice with sweat!

Everyone was required to come to school in the morning for commuting practice. Some got lost a little bit but overall everyone did a good job and we went to newly developed Kyoto Station Area to explore! For last two days GTS introduce two main spots in Kyoto (Shijo area and Kyoto Sta. area) so that everyone can enjoy him/herself alone! No rain so far but super humid day continued! Hope everyone start to be settled this weekend!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

1st Day passed quickly with sweat!

Before recovering from Jet lag, everyone had to take a placement exam in the morning. To spend lunch time in the center of Kyoto city, we got to Shijo Kawaramachi area where everyone had a chance to walk around under Kyoto's famous hot and humid weather. Having been exhausted, students went back to school and waited for host families picking them up. They will practice commuting to school tomorrow and GTS will go to Kyoto station area with them!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Study Abroad Kyoto Group Arrived in Japan!

COD STudy Abroad Group safely arrived in Kyoto last night. Everyone seemed jetlagged and exhausted but also excited to have 6-week experience in Japan! We will learn about the city and transportation basic today as well as getting ready for class with the placement test!

Our summer began!!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

AP Scoring Finished and ready to go to Japan!

13-day AP Scoring session has just ended and be ready to go to Kyoto with 14 students on coming Tuesday. We will fly into Narita by American Airline and transfer to Itami by Japan Airline. Our fist night stay will be at the Kyoto International Academy accomodaiton facility before meeting with host families on the following day.
This year, everyone will get the KIA student ID which allow them to be admitted to various facilities such as, Kyoto Manga Museum, Kyoto City Zoo, Kyoto City Museum, Nijo Castle, etc. as many times as they want. First time Japanese Snack Factory visit is also exciting!
Hope the rainy season end soon and the trip give us great experience. Once getting to Kyoto, this blog will give everyone the daily up-date!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

AP Japanese Test Pre-Reading has begun!

GTS arrived in Kansas City, MO for scoring AP Japanese Test for high school students. Actual scoring session will begin next Wednesday but we are now working hard to create the scoring criteria and training materials. About 2000 students took this test as usual and scoring session will last until 6/16! This is the final year for this scoring location and the site will move to Salt Lake City next year! One of these night, we will probably go to Kansas City Royals ball game and the movie theater where I cannot go that often back in Chicago. I was already tired but am happy to reunited with some teacher friends from all over the U.S.!