June 29, 2020

Download The homework for this week is to watch the interview with economist Michael Hudson, interviewed on the Keiser Report in January 2020. The video has English subtitles and you can read the transcript. Look up vocabulary that you don't know and prepare to discuss this interview next week.

June 22, 2020

Download the transcript of the video that we viewed during the class: Mark Blyth Explains Post-WWII Economics. Check the vocabulary in bold font, and be ready to discuss the topic next week. You should be able to the explain causes and effects that are in the two economic "software programs" that Mark Blyth described in his short talk.

Explore various sources on the internet for testing your English vocabulary level. There are a few suggestions in the list below. For future vocabulary study, think about how you want to learn vocabulary. Do you prefer to learn vocabulary in context as you read and watch films, or do you want to study de-contextualized vocabulary exercises.

Vocabularysize.com

Vocabulary.com

Prolingua

June 15, 2020

One student showed an interest in the film Snowden, so this was our study material today. We read some information about the making of the film and a plot summary of the film. We studied the dialog of one scene which you can read in this document. On the second page there is another scene which we didn't finish, but you can read it for homework.

The homework for this week is to watch the entire film then write a one-page commentary about it. We will discuss it again next week.

June 8, 2020

We finished our study of Stanley Kubrick and the film 2001: A Space Odyssey. For homework, I just asked you to suggest three films that you would find interesting as sources to study in future classes. We could follow the syllabus that I planned, but since there are only two students in the class, we can adapt the plans according to your interests.

June 1, 2020

Watch this short video about the classic science fiction film 2001: A Space Odyssey. The two men who speak in the interview are the actors who performed in the film in 1968. I want students to prepare to speak about something each lesson. This year there are only two students, so I'm asking each of you this week to take one part of a mini-research assignment. K.K. will speak about the film's director Stanley Kubrick, and R.I. will speak about the film 2001: A Space Odyssey. Do some research on Wikipedia or from other sources, then write one page on your assigned topic, then prepare to read it to us in the next class. If you get really interested in this topic, you can watch the entire film. It is very famous and probably available at most video rental shops in Japan.

We need to study more subjects like this, and because there are only two students, you can tell me what you are interested in and what kind of study and practice you want. Don't hesitate to express your ideas.

May 25, 2020

I discussed some ways to improve your writing skills. Please see the document Common Errors in Student Writing that explains some ways to check your writing for common grammar mistakes. Try to improve your ability to find and correct your mistakes before you submit your writing assignments.

We listened to a TED talk about voice training: How to Speak so that People Will Listen

You can read English or Japanese subtitles while you listen to this video. The speaker explained that you have an amazing toolbox in your voice. It has six tools: register, timbre, prosody, pace, pitch and volume. You can develop these tools whether you are speaking Japanese or English.

We listened to a video interview with Noam Chomsky. He answered the question "What does it mean to be truly educated?" (Click here for the transcript). We noted that the content of his speech was interesting, but he would not get a high score according to the voice coach who spoke in the first video we watched. Your homework is to make an audio recording of this speech and improve on the original speaker's performance. He didn't sit up straight. He spoke too quietly from down in his chest. He needs to project his voice better. Rehearse the speech a couple of times before you make your final recording. Prosody (where you put stress in the sentence) may be the most difficult aspect. Sit up straight, warm up your voice, and speak as if you are in a large room with an audience of many people. Send your recording to the teacher as an email attachment.

May 18, 2020

When I return your homework by email, you will see my corrections in it in red font in an MSWord file. Please read this IMPORTANT DOCUMENT that explains how to use the reviewing and editing features of MSWord: How to Track Changes and Accept Changes in MSWord

Watch the 4-minute video about surrogate pregnancy again, study the vocabulary, read it slowly, listen to it, then write a one-page comment about it. You can read the transcript also. One page is about 300-400 words, if you use these settings in MSWord: A4 paper size, Normal margins, Times New Roman 12 point font, line spacing: 1.5).

Send your homework to riches@seijo.ac.jp as an attachment file. Remember that you must use your Seijo email account to send the message. Give the attachment file a name in this format: lastname-firstname-2020-05-20.docx (change the date to the date when you send your email). It is very important that I can see the name and the date in the file name. Write a short message in your email, in English, that tells me your first name and last name, the course name, and the time of the class (for example, Wednesday 1st period).