My 12-year old son is attending junior high school in Japan this year. Even though his first language is English, he is required to sit through all of the English language classes. My wife met with the school principal a few weeks ago to discuss an alternative option, but she was told that there was nothing that could be done. Initially, attending English class seemed to be a total waste of his time, but then I realized that this was in fact quite an interesting context. How often does a kid who is highly proficient in a language need to sit through a beginning level class while his classmates don’t speak the language at all? So, to explore my son's perspective on English teaching at a Japanese junior high school, I’m going to have weekly (5-10 minute) interviews with him. I’m really not sure where this little project is going, but here are a few interesting points he has mentioned so far:
Johnston, S. (2002). A Japanese 3rd grade classroom: The individual within the group. Childhood Education, 78(6), 342-348.
I am a Lecturer in TESOL at the University of Wollongong in Australia. This blog is a reflection of my journey as a researcher, L2 teacher educator, and language teacher.