Sunday, November 16, 2014

Memories in Australia and Test

Hi, it's been long time since I wrote the last blog. The last Tuesday is the last class of the autumn term, and the autumn break has started!
The last night, I went to Kichijoji with one of my friends, who went to Australia together this summer. I hadn't known her before we met at the orientation for SEA programm in which we joind. But we became very good friends and visited many sightweeing spots, talked about our exeriences in the unfamiliar countries with each other. Sometimes, both of us suffered from serious worries and ill health, but each time we helped one another. For example, since I have a tendency to get my body cold and it was winter when we visited Australia, I had difficulty living in a cold house without warm boots. (How can Australian people live in a such cold house? I assumed that there is a difference in physical constitution between Australian people and Japanese people.) And the friend lent me her warm and thick socks so that I could avoid getting my body cold.
We talked about it at the last night's dinner table and laughed together. I realized again that my first time to go abroad was a unforgettabole and special experience. I want to continue good relationships with SEA pro members and also, friends in Australia.
Anyway, recently, I feel yearning for the experience in Australia not only because I had the opportunity to talk with the SEA pro members, but also I'm studing for IELTS test on 22nd of this month. In Australia, I took Monash English course, which is an English course provided by university, and there were 6 students in my class. At that time, 2 of them were studying very hard for IELTS, and I often heard for example, about how hard they studied or how bad their scores were. And they helped each other with recommending good study materials or teaching how to study. Now, I understood well about  why they said that kind of things since I became a future test taker of IELTS. There are only 1 week to study, but I want to follow these 2 hard-working students and do my best on my IELTS test!!!      

Monday, June 30, 2014


Finally, I arrived in Melbourne!!! The airplane left Japan at 8:50 pm the day before yesterday, and arrived in Sidney at around 7:00 am (in Japan, 6:00 am) yesterday. We had another flight from Sidney to Melbourne. It left at 10:00 am and arrived at around 12:00. It was very long flight, and I could not sleep well, so I'm a little tired now.

After the long flight, we met with our host families. At first, I was very nervous because this is the first time to go abroad and I worried about my poor English level.  But now, I'm in a good state because all of the members of my host family was very kind to me. In addition, we walked around the university I will go to yesterday. The city has both modern and old buildings, and they are beautiful. While we were walking around, I had many oppotunities to tell about myself or my opinion of the scenery. Moreover, the host mother told me ask questions whenever I have. Thus, now I can talk with them without worry.

Today, the English course we will attend starts. I'll do my best to learn!!!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Preparing for Winter

The day after tomorrow, I'll go to Australia and spend six weeks there. So, now I'm preparing clothes and other things for my trip. As you know, Australia is in the Southern Hemisphere, so the country is going to be in winter soon. And the most difficult things to prepare is to choose which winter clothes I will bring. First, winter clothes are usually heavier and thicker than summer clothes. Therefore, I should think which clothes I really need. Otherwise, the weight of my suitcase will be over the air company's limit. Second, of course, Japan is in summer now, so it is difficult to imagine how cold winter is. What is worse, I have to feel clothes which are made from wool or other warm materials in my hot room. It's awful! However, I must endure this to make my trip more comfortable.

During the stay, I'm going to write this blog as much as I can. Maybe my blog will help you feel a little cool with the words, "Today was very very cold and windy." or "The temperature is 4 degrees now!" and so on.

I hope my first trip and study abroad will be successful and enjoyable. And I also hope all of you will have nice summer holidays!!!

Friday, June 13, 2014

The Finish Line Is Near!!!

Today, we had a test about The Old Man and the Sea. This was an essay type test, so it was a little difficult for me because I'm not good at writing. Actually, I prepared for the test by choosing a theme and writing about it. And when the test began, I wrote the same things on the paper. However, in a few minutes, I wanted to change the topic. Then I erased and started to write again from the beginning. So, I finished writing just in time, but I could only one sentence for concluding. I hope I can get a good grade.

Anyway, next Monday is a deadline of our five paragraph essays. And Tuesday is the last day of this term. Finish line is close to us!!! I will do my best on the finishing touch!

Thursday, June 12, 2014


Yesterday's class was "introduction of Zotero." Have you ever heard "Zotero"? Zotero is a very useful citation tool. When we want to use an article on the internet in our essays, we just move the cursor up to address bar and click an icon that says "Save to Zotero." And by doing just a few operation, we can do not only in-text citations but also putting information in bibliographies. However, Zotero is not a perfect tool, so we have to remember and re-check what information is needed in each pattern of citation. I want to use this tool and cite correctly in my essay.

The Monday's Class

In Monday's ARW class, we learned about how to write an introduction in an essay. According to Little Brown Handbook (LBH), openings to avoid are...

  1. A vague generality or truth.
  2. A flat announcement.
  3. A reference to the essay's title.
  4. According to Webster...  This means that you shouldn't begin by telling dictionary's definition.
  5. An apology.

I think I must keep these in my mind; otherwise I will start to write with any of these things.

Actually, I have to write a 3 page-essay for History of Western Music class by next Tuesday. However, I haven't started to write it yet. What is worse, I haven't read books about the theme. I should begin as soon as possible and use the knowledge about how to write an essay that I learned in this class. I hope my essay will become a good one.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Not Be Defeated!

"Man can be destroyed but not defeated." This is the words of Santiago who is the main character in The Old Man and the Sea. This was said after sharks attacked, tore, and ate his giant Marlin. I think this phrase is similar to a well-known Japanese proverb, "Nanakorobi Yaoki." This means that a person stumbles seven times, but he/she recovers eight times.
As long as we live it is inevitable for us to encounter bad things we don't want to. Some of them may be other person 's or people's own faults, and others may be things no one can control, for example, nature. Sometimes we may feel discouraged, and cannot do anything and anymore. However, we should never give up. We should stand up again. This is a powerful and useful message, I think.

Unfourtunately, the author of this novel, Earnest Hemingway committed suicide with a short gun. It is said that this suicide was because of his psychological disease. It might have be unavoidable, but it is a sad story for readers who received the message"Not be defeated. "

Friday, June 6, 2014


I'm so sorry to write the blog at this time (Oh, I wrote same sentence in the last time!).

In the last class, we learned about 3Bs in fiction. What's that? 3Bs are Background, Biography, and Bias. These points are important things to know when we read fictions. By doing so, we can deepen our understanding of the story and it will easy to make interpretations.

Other things we learned were "compassion and love" in a novel, "The Old Man and the Sea." We recognized compassion between the old man and the boy many times in the book. They have a strong and nice relationship through whole story, and at the end of it, I felt something warm in my heart, how he needed the boy, and how the boy loved and respected him.

This time I read so fast to catch up with the class, but I want to read it again more thoroughly if I have time to do it.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Old Man and the Sea

First, I'm sorry for writing this article at this time. I couldn't finish this yesterday.

Anyway, in ARW class, we are now working on reading a famous novel, "The Old Man and the Sea."  According to this article, I learned the writer of this novel, Earnest Hemingway was a difficult person unlike Santiago, who is a main character of this novel. However, there are also similarities between them. Both of Hemingway and Santiago are physically strong men and like fishing. The article has a picture of Hemingway, and I thought my image of Santiago was the person who was in the picture. Hemingway's eyes are little scary, but except this, he was Santiago.

Also, I read a material about stoicism in this novel. In this book, Santiago wasn't able to catch fish for 84 days, but he never give up until he caught a fish. Even when he was in a bad situation, he took it positively. This is important and necessary things to live through tough situation. As for me, I tend to take things negatively, so I admire his mental strength. I think I must follow his attitude and never lose my hope. Because my name is "hope."

Sunday, June 1, 2014

A Heavy Day...

The last weed has ended, and a new week starts. Although I had a few big events in the week, I felt so busy and tired. Why? Perhaps, I had two exams on the last Friday.

One was a mid-term exam of Principles of Language Learning and Teaching class. The content of this exam was based on a textbook that was not used in our classes. So I had to read and understand the book all by myself. At the beginning of April, I made a reading plan. However, since I had had a lot of homework and because of my poor time management ability, I couldn't read it little by little. As a result, by the last Monday, I could finish only five of 200 pages! That was the most terrible thing since I entered this university. Therefore, I worked hard on reading from Monday to the exam day, and I finished reading 150 pages, in other words, I couldn't finish. I don't wanna do the same things again!!! I hope I'll be a good planner and performer.

Since this blog is ARW class's journal, I'll write about the other test I had today (Sorry for a long introduction...). That was ARW's CWT about fallacies and argumentation. We learned about total to 13 fallacies through classes and homework. Some of them were easy to understand, but others were difficult to distinguish their meanings from each other. I took the test with my uncertain understanding, so my exam result was not quite good. I should examine them once again and use the knowledge when I write my essay!  

Wednesday, May 28, 2014


It's Wednesday today. This week, I have a lot things to read, write, listen, and remember. I am exhausted now, but I'll give much effort to write this blog.

In today's ARW class, firstly, we continued to learn about fallacies. I found that there are many kinds of fallacies, and each has own unique name. One of the names I found interesting was "Red Herring". When I read this at first, I realized there was a small picture of fish. And I wondered why this picture was put here. Since I didn't know the meaning of a word "herring", I looked it up in my dictionary. Then I understood the reason. "Herring" is a name of a fish, in Japanese, "Nishin". I was a litter surprised at this because I ate Nishin yesterday! So, I could remember at least this one. However,  I have to remember all of the other fallacies. I' ll do the best!!

Fallacy, What Is It?

In the Monday's ARW class, we continued to learn about argumentation. And in that class, we focused on fallacies. Do you know what fallacy mean? Fallacy is a mistake when people make an argument. I didn't know that mistakes in an argument are named special names, so at first, I didn't understand what thing I was going to learn. Moreover, I was very sleepy during the class, so I still don't know much about it (Sorry Dan......). So, I have to recheck the material and know what it is.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Key Is Evidence

Today's topic is "argument" in academic writing. Since we entered the university, we have learned how to write or read an academic paper in ELA classes. Argumentation is one of the things we have learned for this two months. But, I didn't understand well about it, for example, what "assumption" exactly is, or how to strengthen my claims more efficiently. These days, I'm working on a 5 paragraph essay and often struggle with argumentation. So, when the teacher gave us some materials about argumentation, I watched and read them very carefully. And they could solve my questions.

Here are some things I learned.

  1. Evidence should be different, for example, facts, examples, expert opinions, and statistics.
  2. Evidence should be accurate, relevant to topic, representative, which means true to the context, and adequate.
Note: These are from "The Little, Brown, Compact Handbook."

I know evidence plays a paramount role in argumentation, so to use appropriate evidence is necessary for a good writing. However, searching that kind of evidence is a hard work, and it sometimes takes a long time (and this leads to the lack of sleep!!!). I think it is crucial to acquire searching skill as well as knowing about argumentation.

Anyway, I'll "do", not "try" my best to write my essay!

Friday, May 23, 2014

I'm Not a Machine...

Today's topic is drafting and peer reviewing. My teacher providing videos about it, and I thought they were interesting and much useful in my writing and peer reviewing. While I was watching the videos, I realized many things that I should do, but I will tell you only one of them.

 I found that when I peer-review other person's work, I tend to comment on grammar mistakes a lot, and not on concepts because I didn't know well how to check concepts. According to the video, the first thing that peer reviewers should do is to understand massages of writing, and checking grammar is the last thing to do. I recognized that if a writer uses a grammar check tool, he/she doesn't need a kind of peer reviewer who only check grammar, such as I. From now on,  I should concentrate more on understanding massages of a writer and give comments on them. Because I'm not a machine...

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Nervous Than Comfortable

Today's homework was to understand how to write a draft. In our ARW (Academic Reading and Writing) class, we will start to write to write a five paragraph essay soon. Actually, the deadline of 1 paragraph is tomorrow!!! So, I checked carefully how to write a first draft.

I have some notices through reading and watching materials about drafting.

1. To have much time to write essays

2. To have a comfortable and quiet space to write

3. To make efforts to keep writing

4. Not to worry about grammar                                   etc.

In fact, I don't like writing papers so much since I was in a junior high school. I often cried because of the lack of my writing ability and having poor ideas. So, when I knew about these things, I felt comfortable about writing and was encouraged a little. However, I also found that I'm in a critical situation. That is, it's about 3:30 am, and I have about only 1 hour and a half to write my first draft. The material that I read said, it's the most important to set much time to write, so now I'm really nervous and upset. I hope I will make a good paragraph though I have little time. I'll do my best!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Useful Tools

We had a retreat from May 16 to 17, and I had a great and precious time with my section mates and new friends. I will never forget this experience from now on. But, if I write about this, surely it will be a long blog, so I'll write it next time.

I'll write about the last ARW class this time. First, we evaluated ARW CWTs (Course Wide Test ) of other class. It was difficult for me to check another person's writings in all viewpoints of grammar, content, and paragraph structure. However, through this experience, I realized my lack of knowledge, and I think I should think more about how I should write more clearly. Second, we learned about Evernote. Evernote is a useful tool in sharing web pages and video clips. I want to try to use this when I write my 5 paragraphs essay.

Lastly, I'll write about Grammarly, a grammar check tool. I like this because I can check my writing as soon as I wrote, so I can avoid remembering wrong spelling or use of grammar. One more thing I like this tool is that this tool has a function of checking plagiarism. From my writing experience in my high school and ARW class, I felt that it was difficult to avoid plagiarism, and didn't like to spend a long time to check plagiarism. But with this tool, we can avoid plagiarism and our precious time! I recommend you to use Grammarly!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Group Work Is Important and Useful

Today, we all had a course wide test (CWT) of ARW. This was our first exam since we entered the university, so I worried much about this. I wanted to prepare well, but recently, I'm exhausted  in every evening, so I couldn't prepare for it. Now, I can only wish I could get a good score.

Anyway, I'm going to write about the last class of ARW. First, we made a group of three people, and discuss about each topic of the next essay using scratch outline. I'm going to write about English education of elementary schools in Japan. In fact, I could come up with only one question to my topic. But, my peers asked me some good questions, for example, "Why is there a need of teaching English?" and I was able to think the topic much more deeply. Thank you my partners. I realized the importance of group work. Second, we learned about how to organize our essays appropriately. Moreover, we realized we have to collect a variety of sources. It seems to be very hard work for me, but  I'll do my best. These are what we did in the class. 

We Are All Monkeys!

Have you heard the phrase "We are all monkeys"? Do you know the story and deep meaning behind this phrase? If you click the link below, you can see the story in detail, and recognize what the meaning of the phrase.

When I heard "racial discrimination", I always imagine a discrimination against black people in America. But, now I rethink it, I can find many of them around the world. And through this article, I learn there is an action of discrimination even in a soccer match. I disappointed in these things and I have to do something to eradicate discriminations. 

Friday, May 9, 2014

I don't wanna do that!!!

I have some things that I don't wanna do forever. The following are those;
  • to wind a snake around my neck
  • to go on scary rides
The first one is about snakes. I have hated snakes since I was a little child. How do I dislike snakes? For example,  I don't wanna touch them, and see them whether they are live ones or even in pictures. If I happen to see a snake somewhere, I will turn around immediately, and run off in a hurry as possible as I can. And if I happen to see a picture of a snake on a book, I will close the book like a flash of lightning, and stay away from it. Now, I'm sure all of you can imagine what I will do or become if I wind a snake around my neck. certainly, that will give me a shudder, or I will fall down on a floor in faint. I don't wanna do that never and ever.

The second one is about scary rides. The reason why I don't like scary rides is that simply I'm afraid of heights and speed. So, actually, I've never ridden roller coasters, even a small one or one for children. Therefore, it is a nightmare for me to go on scary rides. I don't wanna do that never and ever.

photo credit: 

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


It is often said that netiquette is important. However, what really is "netiquette"? In my opinion, netiquette is a rule and a manner that people should always keep in their minds and follow whenever they use the internet. For instance, "You have to use calm words when you comment on something.", and "You must not mention a person's name that can specify the person." I think both are easy to forget if people are really absorbed into something on the internet, but these are also easy to remember if people think there are someone on the other side, and think over the feelings of the other people.

 Furthermore,  I'd like to add an own rule when I write this blog. My teacher told us that some people who aren't Japanese also see our blogs. So, I should write to explain Japanese words and culture in detail to understand them well whenever they appear in this blog. In order to do so, I should see my blog more objectively than before.

I think explaining Japanese things in detail is not only kind to people from other countries, but also gives such people many opportunities to know Japanese culture well, and improve my English more and rethink Japanese language and culture. Therefore, I want to write to make this blog beneficial to other people as well as me. 

Friday, May 2, 2014

The Seasons of GoGatsuByo is Coming...

It's May 1st today. I'm surprised that a month already passed when I entered the university, and, I' m looking forward to Golden Week(GW)!  GW is a series of national holidays at the beginning of May in Japan, and we often take a trip, meet with old friends, and so on. In other words, GW makes us feel refreshed after having  a month with tence caused by many new things, like new friends or circumstances.

However, some people, especially freshman and new employees will feel depressed after GW. This is commonly called GoGatsuByo. GoGatsuByo is mainly caused when people can't adjust to their new circumstances. Symptoms of GoGatsuByo are depression, apathetic, fears and impatience. If these symproms get worse, patients will become heavy depression.
To avoid GoGatsuByo, I think it is important to recognize ourselves. If we are under considerable stress now, we should relieve them by doing sports, or hobbies. Besides. it is also important to think possitively. For example, "we can do this because we did these tasks." Moreover, it is also a good way to receive counseling, and we may feel much comfortable.
I think we should be careful about our conditions, and enjoy GW so much!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Education Is .....

On December 5th, 2013, one of the world's greatest people died. He was a person who dedicated almost all his life to fighting against crutial racial discrimination in South Africa, which is calld "apartheid". He was a person who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993 and served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999. Who is this great person? Yes, his name is Nelson Mandela.

Now, I would like to introduce one of his quotes to you. Some of you may have heard this; "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Actually, I don't know his purpose of this statement, however, I' m sure that people in many countries, especially in Africa and Asia need more appropriate education. They often cannot go to school because of gender discrimination, poverty, lack of facilities. Their lack of education causes many other problems; illiteracy, difficulty in getting jobs, high rate of child mortality, poverty, and health problems.  We have to solve this problem immediately; otherwise the vicious circle will last forever.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Human Beings Are the Only Intelligent Life in the Universe

Is it true that human beings are the only intelligent life in the universe? Human can speak language and communicate with others, think strategies, learn and remember many things. However, in my opinion, I don't think that human is "the only" intelligent life and I believe that there are many intelligent animals in the world. For example, one of the intelligent animals is crow. Crows have sociality in some degree, often cooperate with others, and communicate with others using their caws. In addition, they do some interesting actions to get their food. Specifically speaking, they drop to crash food that they can't crash with their bills on a hard ground, or they put walnut on a road and wait until a car comes and crashes the shell of the walnut. These actions can be intelligent being. I think that human is "the most" intelligent life in the world, but not "the only" intelligent life.

Friday, April 25, 2014

The University life in ICU

The LLA lecture presented by Dr. Paul Wadden gave me an opportunity to rethink the value of ICU and how I should make my ICU life meaningful and worthful.

I agree with his opinion that ICU offered us many opportunities to both study and do other activities. First, We can acquire wide knowledge through liberal arts education and various skills that are often required in works in the future through activities in whole classes and lots of homework. In addition, we can have many opportunities to deepen relationships with others, like sectionmates and enlarge our horizons, for example, through joining club acivities, taking lessons of pipe organs or going abroad.

To use these opportunities effectively, it is important to create one's own balanced ICU life as soon as possible. Since everyone has different level of physical strength, time spent in commuting, and sterength and weakness of English abilities, therefore to know and understand ourselves is necessary to establish a good ICU life.In my case, although it has passed just a few weeks since I entered the university, I have faced with some difficulties in finishing all homework and keeping good health. I think they are because I don't have much stamina and am faced to have two-hours-long journy to the university. There may be more reasons to be considered. Anyway, because of these reasons, I often become too tired to do a lot of homework and sleepy in lecture type classes. However, I don't want to continue this bad habits and want to take pipe organ lessons. Thus,  I have to get stronger in phisical, improve my weakness of English abilities, and acquire the ability of time management to make my ICU life more meaningful and worthful.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

When it rains, it pours.

When it rains, it pours. This is a proverb, and its meaning is if someone encounters a bad luck, more bad luck will follow. There is a similar Japanese proverb, which is "Nakittsura ni hachi."

Today is the day which is described as "When it rains, it pours." In this morning, I failed to leave home on usual time and wasn't able to catch the appropriate trains, so I was flustrated. When I arrived at Musashi-sakai and touched my Suica to the ticket gate, a buzzar was rang. I asked a station staff for this, he told me that I mistouched at the previous station. Because of this, I missed the appropriate bus. When I arrived at the university, it had just passed 8:50, so I hurried to N-kan where LLA class was held. After I entered N-kan, someone told me that the room was changed and we have to go to a room in Honkan. So, again I hurried to Honkan with the person, went to the 3rd floor, and sat down in the room. In a few minutes, I realized that I was in a wrong room, yes, actually, the room was for stream 4 students! Therefore, I left the room and went to N-kan, but while I was going to the correct room, I noticed that I left my jacket in the wrong room. However, I decided to got to take that after the LLA class.

This is just a part of my bad luck day. Actually, I had more and more bad luck after this experience. Today, I surely understood what the meaning of "When it rains, it pours." was.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

What Is the Perfect Room in Hotel?

What is the perfect room in hotel? I think that the perfect room in hotel should be luxurious, and its atmosphere should be relaxing. The room is large, and it has a bathroom. The color of the room is based on dark brown and ivory. For example, the color of the wall and clothing is ivory, and the colums and furniture is dark brown. In addition, lightning is orange. For this coloring, people can  feel luxurious. On the wall, there are some fine pictures in oils, and by the large window, there are a table and some chairs. Therefore, people can talk with friends, drink coffees, and see beautiful scenery that are freshly green mountains and a lake. This is a hotel room I want to stay at.