November 20, 2013

We had a vocabulary quiz, then worked to write stories based on Dixit card pictures. Please use these stories as a way to practice and review recent vocabulary and grammar, and take a look at your classmates' stories too!

Allen-sensei will be at a conference Thursday and Friday. Please bring your textbook to class to review Chapter 4 together. On Monday the 25th, report to the library for our Chapter Test!

November 19, 2013

Kanji quiz, then today's new character is 洗 (p. 157). We looked at the questions in p. 151, Section F and tried to come up with REASONABLE, POLITE answers. Remember, the polite answer in Japanese is NOT to say "thank you" when you are complimented.

November 18, 2013

Vocabulary quiz, then today's new kanji is 終 (p. 134). We worked on reading the passage from the beginning of Chapter 4 while listening to the audio track. The audio tracks are all available on the Moodle site, and the file names for Chapter 4 have been un-garbled. Strongly suggested practice technique to improve reading speed and comprehension!

November 15, 2013

Allen-sensei had to go pick up Felix-sensei from daycare, since they wouldn't let him stay there with that rash all over his body. As usual, if Allen-sensei is absent, we followed the calendar.

November 14, 2013

No quiz today! Today's new kanji uses yesterday's kanji as a radical: 始 (p. 133). Allen-sensei compared this kanji with another one that sounds the same, and is also used in words that talk about "beginning". Compare:
  • めまして(はじめまして)
  • 食べめます(たべはじめます)
Here's the difference: 初 refers to doing something for the first time ever. You only say 初めまして to someone the very first time that you meet him. The word 初級(しょきゅう)tells me that it's a level for people who are starting to learn a skill for the first time in their lives. But every single time that I sit down to a meal, there will be a moment of 食べ始めます and as the kanji shows, women are always starting things.

We took a look at some flashcards, and Allen-sensei has typed up some reviews. Please add to this list! We also worked on reading the conversation at the start of Chapter 4 in the textbook.

November 13, 2013

We had a vocabulary quiz, then worked to text message each other and practice typing. Today's kanji is 台 (p. 133), which is the first half of たいわん and たいふう and だいどころ (bet you didn't know that both Taiwan and typhoon are words borrowed from Japanese!).

November 12, 2013

Sensei is at school doing paperwork, and students are at home enjoying a pretend snow day. :(

November 11, 2013

Kanji quiz! Today's new kanji is 森 (p. 133). We finished looking at the handout from Friday, and then we had a fire drill. Then we looked briefly at the text chat responses that we wrote for the Chapter 3 Test.

November 8, 2013

No quiz today. Today's new kanji is 林 (p. 132). We talked about Sensei's meeting on Sunday that had guest speakers from an employment agency that specializes in helping find applicants who speak Japanese. The focus was how to help students turn the skills that they're gaining in the classroom into a marketable skill after they've graduated. The agency's website is and she's going to add more information/notes to the wiki in the near future.

We started work together on a handout to practice analyzing kanji so that you can look them up/learn them more easily.

November 7, 2013

Vocabulary quiz. We practiced using the information from yesterday to try to actually analyze and look up unfamiliar kanji in either a kanji dictionary app or a gigantic kanji dictionary. Today's new character is 英 (p. 132).

November 6, 2013

Kanji quiz, then today's new character is 様 (p. 104 and the kanji supplement handout). We went over the culture notes and p. 148 together, and then tried to record speeches.

November 5, 2013

Sensei was absent due to exploding shower handles. New kanji: 紙 (p. 104). Memorize vocabulary #1-5 on p. 139, and then (in theory) everyone worked together to complete p. 148 after checking out the information on pp. 130-131.

November 4, 2013

Today's test sections were a written essay, a simulated verbal conversation, and a spoken presentation on a cultural topic. We will have to do the presentations tomorrow, so please bring earbuds tomorrow as well. Study Chapter 4 Grammar B tonight - it's very short and useful!

November 1, 2013

Today's two new kanji is 楽 (p. 103). We worked with the moms to go over the reading and listening passages from Thursday.

October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween! Happy test day! Today's test sections were multiple-choice listening, multiple-choice reading comprehension, and a "text chat" of short written answers, all completed through computers. We will be doing a fair amount of practice with typing during the second quarter, and I think that once you become used to it, you will feel like it helps a LOT with improving your spelling and kanji use, and also makes your writing a lot more understandable to others.

October 30, 2013

No quiz today! We practiced writing outlines for essays and discussed some details of how to improve future essays, including cohesive devices.

Please remember to bring earbuds for Thursday and Monday.

October 29, 2013

No quiz today! We got back a giant stack of graded papers and talked a little bit about the rubrics. Then everyone spent some time typing, and Allen-sensei met with each member of the class individually to give a little more feedback about their writing. Today's new kanji is 体 (p. 103).

October 28, 2013

Today's quiz was about the rest of the vocabulary in Chapter 3. We didn't have a new kanji today. We looked at the books that each person read over the weekend to try to find vocabulary or grammar from the current chapter...

We talked about the AP topics that our work has focused on this year, and tried to think of how past studies could be used to talk about some of the other AP topics.

October 24, 2013

No quiz today! Three new kanji for today are 雪 元 飲 on p. 102. We worked on reading children's books from Japan. For the weekend, everyone should try to summarize their book in English.

October 23, 2013

Today's quiz was over kanji. We practiced using the grammar pattern for giving advice by imagining what advice the principal would give to students at the start of the school year. We worked on writing this advice down, and shared our work with the class.

October 22, 2013

Today's quiz was over vocabulary #21-30. Then we finished telling the group about our terrible advice and read Frog and Toad books for a while. Today we got two new kanji (since Allen-sensei forgot and is a terrible person). They are 秋 and 冬and they are on textbook pp. 101-102.

October 21, 2013

Today's quiz was on kanji. Then we looked at some requests for advice (textbook p. 122) and wrote one piece of bad advice and one piece of good advice for each with a partner.

October 18, 2013

We talked with the moms about possible topics for the Speech Contest. We'll continue to plan this through the second quarter. Today's new kanji is 秋 (p. 101), which is really easy to remember the meaning of if you break the character down into its radicals.

October 17, 2013

Vocabulary quiz! Hurtful comments about Allen-sensei's ability to remember what Japanese 3 has already studied, even though this quiz was just fine!

Today's new kanji is 夏 and it's on textbook p. 101. We talked about the letter at the start of Chapter 3 that we started reading yesterday, and then some about possible topics for the Speech Contest.

October 16, 2013

Even shorter class! We finished 「かぐやひめ」and pestered 先生 about the kanji that you might use to spell that name. According to Wikipedia (I know, I know), there are two options that are commonly used: 輝夜姫 or 赫映姫 The first one is "sparkling evening princess" and the second one is "sparkling reflection princess", but since it's a children's story, usually it's written in hiragana. This story also gets called 「竹取物語」(たけとりものがたり), "The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter".

We also started reading the letter at the start of Chapter 3.

October 15, 2013

Short class! We watched more of 「かぐやひめ」and got the new kanji 春 (p. 101).

October 14, 2013

Vocabulary quiz, then today's new kanji (which we were technically supposed to look at on Friday). 知 as in 知りません (しりません). We watched a kids' video version of 「したきりすずめ」and part of 「かぐやひめ」 and talked about the visual style of them.

October 11, 2013

We talked with the moms about the difference between the version of the story that we read yesterday as compared to the more traditional one, which is called 「したきりすずめ」

October 10, 2013

Today's new kanji - 着 (text p. 62).

We practiced the Grammar A information that was last night's homework, and read すずめのお宿 together.

October 9, 2013

Unit 2, Test Day 2

October 8, 2013

Unit 2, Test Day 1

October 7, 2013

We created review sheets together to study for Tuesday and Wednesday's test.

October 4, 2013

Today we practiced kanji with the moms. Today's new kanji is 午 as in 午後 (ごご) and 午前 (ごぜん), which you probably remember mean p.m. and a.m.

October 3, 2013

No quiz today. Today's new kanji is 後(あと).

We watched the rest of Episode 1 and discussed it.

October 2, 2013

No quiz today - Coffman and Jerome were too different, so I'm taking a pass on today. Today's new kanji is 室 as in 教室(きょうしつ).

We watched Episode 1 of 日本人の知らない日本語 and were very happy.

Register for the SAT II Japanese test! Do it!

October 1, 2013

Kanji quiz! Today's new character is 教 as in 教室(きょうしつ) and 教科書(きょうかしょ) or 教える(おしえる). We had a massive debate about school rules, and sensei was very happy.

September 30, 2013

Vocabulary quiz, then the two groups started getting ready for a heavy debate on school rules. Be prepared! Japanese 4 will be asking questions!

September 27, 2013

We talked with the moms about their school activities and trips, and told them about ours. Today's new kanji is 旅 (text p. 60).

September 26, 2013

We had a vocabulary quiz, then read the essay at the start of Chapter 2 together. Today's new kanji is 海

Everyone also received copies of AP essay examples, along with the scores and the explanations for these scores. Please take a look at these. They're similar in many ways to the text chat examples we looked at, but this will give you a good idea of what it looks like to address the prompt fully and appropriately in that type of writing.

September 25, 2013

Short study hall, with no quiz. New kanji = 花

September 24, 2013

New kanji: 文化 (text p. 59).

We worked on AP writing rubrics; tomorrow we'll take a look at the comparison essay rubrics. Exciting!

September 23, 2013

Allen-sensei was absent; study hall time.

September 20, 2013

No quiz today, and the new kanji is 公 (because there are lots of wild pigs in public parks, and the kanji spells "ham" in katakana, and also I like lame hints), and it's on p. 59 in the textbook.

We talked with the moms about the school year events that we were discussing yesterday and the day before, and then talked about the coming weekend.

On Monday, Sensei will be absent, so please work together on practicing Grammar A-C and vocabulary up to #15 in Chapter 2.

September 19, 2013

No quiz today, because you lucked out. New kanji of the day is 昨 and it's found on p. 24 as well as the kanji supplement handout. I STRONGLY recommend that anyone with an iPhone/iPod/iWhatever get the dictionary app imiwa? and use it to create vocabulary and kanji study lists. There are other good apps out there, but this one is well-made, free, and lets you create vocabulary lists. For all of you Android people, Makimono Japanese Dictionary appears to have nearly all of the same benefits, but doesn't let you create lists as far as I can tell.

We compared and compiled our homework, then practiced using recent vocabulary and grammar by writing a story using all of the stuff so far from Chapter 2.

September 18, 2013

No quiz today! Our new kanji of the day is 験 and it's found on textbook p. 24 as well as the kanji supplement handout.

We worked on the practice on text p. 79 and discussed Grammar A and B. We also used the practice on pp. 88-89 together. For homework, create a similar chart explaining Jerome's annual schedule using as many of the same terms as are applicable to our events.

We also briefly discussed signing up for the SAT II subject test in Japanese. Here is the link to College Board's Test Practice for Japanese. You would need to sign up through the Guidance Office. *The test is only offered on November 2nd this year!!

***Thursday, September 19 will be a "super update" day for Japanese 3. Nameless papers can be claimed at the end of class on Friday, and credit will be updated the same day. All items other than the open-ended sections of the Unit 1 test will be updated by 5:00. Please familiarize yourself with the rubrics on the Japanese 3 Main Page for information on grading of those items.

September 17, 2013

Second Day of the Unit 1 Test! It will take a little while to score the open-ended responses.

September 16, 2013

First day of the Unit 1 Test!

September 13, 2013

We didn't have a quiz or a new character today! We shared your Harry Potter stories and checked your casual version of the conversations at the end of Chapter 1 with Sekiya-sensei.

Please look back at the Class Notes, and also at your past quizzes to see what types of items you should anticipate seeing on the test. We will be splitting the test over Monday and Tuesday so that you don't feel as rushed. Here is a detailed explanation of possible question types found on the exam. Good luck!

September 12, 2013

Kanji quiz and kanji of the day: 試

We worked together on re-writing a couple of dialogues using what we know about casual male and female speech patterns from this textbook chapter. Then we used the checklist at the end of Chapter 1 in the textbook to self-assess our vocabulary and grammar knowledge in preparation for Monday's test.

September 11, 2013

Vocabulary quiz over the remaining words in Chapter 1. Today's new kanji is 宿 and it is shown on the Kanji Supplement page that I gave you yesterday.

We read the remainder of the page from yesterday, then everyone got a Dixit game card and worked on writing a continuation of the story based on the picture on the card.

September 10, 2013

Kanji review quiz, then today's new kanji: 答 Yes, yes, don't make fun of me. I forgot that we didn't yet learn it. I am terrible and old.

We summarized the first page of the Harry Potter book that we were reading yesterday, then worked on reading a second one.

September 9, 2013

Vocabulary quiz, and NO NEW KANJI TODAY! We worked to read a book together today; If you are interested in downloading your own copy, you can buy it at the Pottermore Shop. Be aware though, this may not work with the Kindle app on your regular computer! It works well on my iPhone using the Kindle app, but not at all on my laptop. There are other apps that will make Japanese books work on your computer. I haven't tried with a Kindle/Nook/other e-book readers. But e-books are a great language learning tool! You can add notes or pronunciation to tough words, or use the dictionary function...

September 6, 2013

We had our first visit from the moms today. They introduced two new kanji to us, then we talked through what we had written so far in our scripts and tried to finish more of the story.

***Photos of the moms who volunteer at Jerome are posted on the wiki home page, so please work to learn their names quickly!

September 5, 2013

Today we had a quiz and then worked on polishing up the script for the comic strip story. No new kanji today...

September 4, 2013

Kanji quiz, including a review character. New kanji of the day is 明

We worked together to write a script for a comic of a student coming to Japan and meeting the Japanese host family that he'll be living with. We'll keep working on this tomorrow.

September 3, 2013

Today's quiz was on vocabulary. Then we used a textbook activity to practice polite greetings. New kanji: 昼

August 30, 2013

We had the big summer kanji test today. Grades are already up on ProgressBook! We added the new kanji 朝.

**Please remember to bring back the permission slips for Iya-sensei!

August 29, 2013

We had a kanji quiz, then added the new kanji 弟. We then read the first conversation at the start of Chapter 1 (Ken talking with お母さん) and discussed the casual conversation patterns that she uses.

August 28, 2013

We had a vocabulary quiz over the first 10 words in Chapter 1. We added two new kanji today, since we didn't get any yesterday: 妹 and 兄

We used the first ten vocabulary words to write a story in pairs.

August 27, 2013

Allen-sensei was absent, so we just reviewed kanji and studied vocabulary.

August 26, 2013

We practiced Grammar F from Chapter 1, and we didn't have a new kanji.

August 23, 2013

Kanji quiz, then kanji of the day: 姉

We did a baseline writing task so that Sensei can see what we'll need to work on this year in order to get to the end goals of Japanese 3. Yes, it'll be scored based on the rubrics for that final goal, but the results are to give us information, not for giving you a grade.

Due Monday (check the calendar to see this too), study Grammar F on textbook p. 35.

August 22, 2013

First kanji quiz of the year! Hooray! Once that was out of the way, we introduced the kanji of the day, which is 字. Then we got Liam up to speed on the logistical stuff we talked about yesterday, and did a couple of story-telling activities to get back into practice.

August 21, 2013

新学年おめでとう! We talked a LOT today about procedural information for the coming year. A split-level class period is a different setup, but it works well once we're all in the habit of working collaboratively and once we're back in practice speaking Japanese. Tonight's homework is to look through all of that paperwork, learn the kanji 漢, and review summer homework.