It’s almost been a year since I started on JET, since I started this tumblr.
True to form, I have proven very lazy in one of these two. Thankfully, it was not my job!
Consider this tumblr put on notice to improve itself in the coming weeks.
Spring is coming.
There’s something I’ve been thinking about that was brought to a head recently.
I don’t think my language ability is good - because I’m comparing myself to people who have, or could, pass N2 or N1. Yet, there are lots of people here who are in the same position when compared to me.
When a friend introduced me to his girlfriend the other day, he did so by saying my Japanese was good. Objectively, this is true.
Subjectively, however, I am still holding to the belief that the next step for me to become ‘better’ is by either passing higher levels on the JLPT, or by more frequent and involved use. That is, more topical discussion with a more extensive vocabulary than what I currently possess.
And yet, I can still explain class activities to my students in Japanese; I can still have long conversations with fellow teachers about life in Australia versus life in Japan; and, most importantly, I can still explain the conditions of Coeliac Disease to the waitress taking my order at 2am and request a specific meal with modifications to make it GF.
My friend I mentioned earlier, on the other hand, can still hold up a decent conversation with his girlfriend in Japanese. Not to mention his fluent French and Irish (that should make it easy to guess who I meant.)
So, I guess the point I’m trying to make here, if any, is that we tend to understate our abilities to a certain degree. Just remember, even if all you can say in any language other than your native tongue, you’re doing 100% better than the mono linguists in the world!
So, time for another one of these things, eh? Well, let’s start with a round-up of what’s been happening.
For starters, I’ve finished the first semester of this year and am currently in the super-long summer holiday period.
But don’t think that means I get to stay home from school - oh no, teachers (ALTs included) are still required to come to school everyday.