Lost Item

January 25, 2013

I hate losing things. Usually I avoid losing things by having a place for each thing. Every time I use something, I try to return it to its place. This way, I always know where to find things.

One example is keys. I have two places to put keys. One place is a case with a cover. I put keys that I rarely use in the case. Another place is a dish. Keys that I use almost daily are put on the dish.

Sometimes I am very busy and tired. Those are dangerous times. If I am busy or tired and I forget to put something in its place, I might not find it later.

I lost something important recently and haven’t found it yet!

Do you lose things? How do you find them?

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Sleep Like a Log

January 22, 2013

We have a funny saying in English: sleep like a log.

A log does not move. It just lays on the ground.

If we sleep without moving, we sometimes say, “I slept like a log!”

Last night I was very tired. My futon was very comfortable. I slept all night. I didn’t wake up at all.

Indeed, I slept like a log.

How did you sleep last night? Were you comfortable? Did you sleep like a log?

Cold Fingers

January 21, 2013

The weather is very cold now. This morning there was frost on the car windows.

I rode my scooter to school. By the time I got to school, my fingers were cold.

The school office is warm. I feel warm, but my fingers are still cold.

I like wintertime, but I don’t like cold fingers.

How do you keep your fingers warm during the winter?

Power of Confidence

January 18, 2013

Today I am teaching third and fourth grade students. At the beginning of class I tell them that they will each speak about their Winter vacation in English. Most of the children are shocked and say they can’t do it.

During the class I talk about something completely different, but I teach them a sentence:

I went to ~.

After that I ask them to tell me where they went during vacation. Every student is able to tell me in English.

At the end of class I talk to them about confidence. At first they strongly thought they couldn’t do it, even if I taught them. I encourage them to trust their own ability.

Do you have confidence? Do you think confidence is important?

Plastering the Walls

January 15, 2013

Our house is old. Many of the walls in the house look old-fashioned. I don’t mean “old-fashioned” in a good way, like: traditional, historic, or antique. I mean “old-fashioned” in a bad way, like: out of date, or out of style.

The walls in some areas were very dark as well. This made the house seem small and unpleasant. So, I have been plastering the walls.

We chose an off-white plaster, so it is a very light color. First, I plastered the walls in the entry hall and the hallway, since anyone coming to our home sees them. In December, I plastered the walls in the bathroom (that means toilet in polite speech). Now I am plastering the walls in the changing room for the bath.

The house looks so much bigger and feels very fresh.

Have you done any home improvement? What did you do?

Test Day

January 10, 2013

Teaching is a very enjoyable job. When a teacher is successful, many students’ lives are improved. It is a chance to make a better future.

Test days are sad days for me. Because I am an assistant, I have almost no work on test days. My favorite part of my job is working with the students, but on test days I don’t get to interact with the students much.

Yesterday was a test day, but I got to teach a special class anyway. I was happy about that.

Are you a teacher? What is the favorite part of your day?

Where Can I Wear This?

January 9, 2013

One piece of Japanese clothing that I like is the hanten. My wife’s grandmother made a hanten from silk. It looks very nice and it is very warm.

Of course, I can wear it while relaxing at home. Sometimes I want to keep it on when I go outside, but my wife tells me that is strange.

Do you wear a hanten? Where do you wear it? Do you ever go outside with it on?

Power of Teachers

January 7, 2013

My mother sent me a package at Christmastime. Inside the package were some old books from my childhood and teacher reports from my school days. It was shocking to see some of the comments that teachers wrote.

Of course I was a difficult student for many reasons, but I also enjoyed participating in class. Until fourth grade my teachers made some harsh comments; however, things changed in fifth and sixth grade. My fifth and sixth grade teacher was a very strict teacher, but he loved the students. He made strong comments on my reports, but they were never harsh. Also, he always found positive things to say.

Having a strict but kind teacher helped me grow and improve. I hope more people like him want to become teachers.

Did you have any especially important teachers when you were a student?

Too Many Cookies

September 7, 2012

During August almost everyone in Japan goes traveling. Most people take a trip to visit their family home. While they are there, it is common to pay respects at their relatives gravesites.

Often people will take trips to cool locations because it is so hot. Some people go traveling outside of Japan as well.

Of course, Japanese people like to give souvenir items to people. Cookies are a very easy souvenir item, so we often get cookies. This year I have a lot of cookies. I don’t know if I can eat all of them.

Did you travel during August? Where did you go? Will you help me eat my cookies?

American Pie

August 1, 2012

Recently I heard about a pie shop in Kyoto. The owner studied in New England and can make real American pies, pancakes, and scones. Many of my friends have eaten there already. They all say it is very good.

I want to go to Kyoto and eat at the cafe. I hope I can have a chance soon.

When I was a kid, we really enjoyed pies with berries in them: blackberries, raspberries, huckleberries, strawberries, blueberries, marion berries, many kinds of berries.

Do you like pies? What is your favorite kind?