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Obama's speech as English lesson
Village Old Timer
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The BBC has a video shot in Tokyo, showing how Japanese use Obama to learn English in adult English classes.

The Tokyo senior high school at which I teach frequently uses speeches in the lessons. We made the most of the students' high interest to get them to watch, listen, learn some idioms, rhetorical and presentation skills in preparation for university entrance interviews.

Posted on: 2009/1/29 16:24
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Re: Obama's speech as English lesson
Village Old Timer
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I did use some of Obama's speeches during the campaign for coaching materials for some of my students for their speech contest.
I did think some of the content they couldn't get.

But at the jr. High and elementary school everyone is saying "yes we can" and "yes you can".

Posted on: 2009/1/30 18:51
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Re: Obama's speech as English lesson
Village Old Timer
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Last November was our last trip to Japan. We stopped by the Nagareyama-Otakonomori (?) mall and found a language class on the top floor. There were mothers and what looked like 1 year olds. The very caucasian (red haired) teacher was doing a good job of getting the mothers to say "Yes I Can!!" very entheusiasticly. The children were drooling and more interested in each other.

I pointed out to my wife that the Japanes have been fully indoctrinated.

Marty

Posted on: 2009/1/30 19:53
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Re: Obama's speech as English lesson
Village Old Timer
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In Japan, fashion and celebrities and slogans have a short shelf life. Last month it was "sonna ni kankei nai", this month "Goo!", and now "Yes we can".

Japanese language has a strong magical feeling about words. You can see it everywhere in the practice of calligraphy and hear it in the lengthy set phrases of greetings called aisatsu. Obama's repetition of the simple slogan struck a chord here. My kids say it in place of "gambarimasu", but they know little about Obama other than that he is the president of the US.

Posted on: 2009/1/31 8:02
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Re: Obama's speech as English lesson
Village Old Timer
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Hey Liz,
You're a little behind on the times.

That stuff was like 6months to a year ago.

"Kachi kachi kazo!"

Posted on: 2009/1/31 12:05
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Re: Obama's speech as English lesson
Villager
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OHh! Suits you, sir! ...Which was nice.

Posted on: 2009/2/2 21:05
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