週末の旅行 Weekend Travels

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1週間と少し前はアメリカ独立記念日でした。私は故郷の実家を訪れ、おいしい食べ物を食べ、花火を見て、休日を楽しみました。近所の友達が新しい家へ引っ越すので、荷造りを手伝いました。この休日は楽しかったけれど、その夜には疲れ果てていました。

日曜日は、二人の同僚と私の新しいルームメイトのくみこさんと一緒にサンフランシスコに行きました。なつえさんとフィッシャーマンズワーフで会いました。最近、なつえさんは山田屋というラーメン屋で働き始めました。以前に訪れた際は、なつえさんの作った醤油ラーメンを食べました。今回は、から揚げとご飯とポテトサラダのお弁当を食べました。すごく美味しかったです!

その後、ダイソーと紀伊国屋書店を訪れました。その店は日本街の中で、私が大好きなお店のうちの二つです。ダイソーでは、筆ペンと単語帳を買いました。買い物をしてから、サンフランシスコのフェリー駅を訪れました。フェリー駅はとても綺麗です。建物の高い場所にある大きな時計があり、夜なると時計が綺麗に照らされてさています。

それがとても綺麗だったので、たくさん写真を撮りました。サンフランシスコでは本当に楽しい時間を過ごすことが出来ました。サンフランシスコは楽しく旅行ができる場所だと思います。近い将来、また訪れたいです。

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Japanese Language Video 「AからBまで1時間かかる」

最近私はこの日本語のビデオシリーズ を見ます。このビデオシリーズは良い文法の練習だと思います。授業はかんたんだけど、勉強にとても役立つ復習です。日本語を学ぶ学生たち, 聞いてくださいね!

Recently I have been watching this Japanese language video series, which offers great grammar practice.  The lessons are simple, but the review is still helpful.  I hope that fellow students of Japanese will enjoy watching!

春セメスター Spring Semester

535a0b87c5ce9f7d8fd6eb344b0aff35最近、大学生活がとても忙しくてブログを書くことを休んでいました。。。春学期の最中で、授業の課題に追われて忙しいですが、私は毎日楽しく過ごすことができています。毎年、春になると未来に希望を持てるような気持ちになります。。すでに節は春なので、もう少しすれば夏になります。

平日に授業と仕事があります。休憩中に日本語検定の言葉を暗記しています。放課後、授業の宿題を終わらせるように頑張っています。毎週、サッカークラブの 練習に参加しています。女子サッカークラブのメンバーが最近多くなってきています。今、クラブ員は平均14名が練習に参加しています。

先々週、サッカークラブのメンバーがオルチャータとエンチラーダを作り、大学構内で販売しました。先週末には、クラブ員で資金集めの一環として洗車を行いました。。

週末は、よく喫茶店で日本語の会話と文法の勉強をしました。喫茶店や図書館の雰囲気は、勉強をするのに最適な場所だと思います。ほとんどの時間、文法の勉強をしましたが、N3の問題は難しいです。。。良 い外国語教師になるには、第2言語学ぶことは私にとってとても役に立つと考えています。第2言語を学ぶ難しさを知ることは、指導者として良い経験となりま す。学生にどのようにその困難を克服するかを教えるには、まず私が越えなければなりません。今、その難題に挑戦しています。

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お好み焼き Okonomiyaki

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昨日はクリスマスイヴでした。クリスマス休みなので私は実家を訪れています。いつも友達や家族と一緒に料理を作ることが楽しみです。私もアジアの料理を作るのが上手になりたいです。そういう訳で、最近私の友達が日本の料理を教えてくれました。例えば、カレーライスとテンプラ等々。。2週間前に私の家で友達とお好み焼きを作りました。サンディエゴへの出張で料理の材料を買って、今朝またお好み焼きを作りました。一人でこの料理を作るのは今回が初めてでした。弟とお母さんがお好み焼き「ジャパニーズピザ」を食べるのは今回が初めてでした。美味しかったと思いました!

(この写真は私たちの朝ご飯です!)

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サンディエゴの会議

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今、私はY.E.S.という会社で働いています。

金曜日から土曜日までサンディエゴにあるY.E.S.の本社に行きました。そこで、Y.E.S.の会議がありました。この会議はすごく良い機会でした。
会議はほとんど日本語で、それは私にとって、聞き取りや会話の練習の好機でありました。私の仕事は楽しく、それは貴重な経験だったと思います。私はY.E.S.で働いて、かんしゃしております。

最近、留学生の数が増えています。ですので、私は英語で彼らを助けたいと思っています。私も日本人の文化は面白いと思います。最近、世界はもっとインターナショナルになってきています。そういうわけで、私はこのようなInternational Companyで働くことに興味を持っており、英語と日本語を使って働くことに興味があります。将来、私は本当に楽に日本語で考えを伝えることができるようになりたい。

その時まで私は頑張ります!

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JLPT N5 日本語能力試験

tumblr_mxdpp2JSmB1qegcl7o1_500Earlier this week (Dec. 1st), I traveled to San Francisco State University to take the JLPT N5 exam.  It was a great experience!  Although I have not yet received my results, I thought that taking the test was helpful for identifying areas where I need to improve, as well as resulting in surprise when discovering my abilities exceeded what I expected.  For example, although I had feared how well I might do on the listening section, this portion of the test was easy for me!  Vocabulary was also easy because of all of the time spent using study resources such as featured (here). In addition, I discovered that it may be beneficial for me to review more grammar, since this was the part that I found most challenging.

All in all, although the test results have not yet been released, I think that studying for the test was a great experience, and that it was very helpful for encouraging my study by setting a specific goal, as well as providing focus and direction as to what material I should cover. Taking the test was also an interesting experience because I had the opportunity to meet people from all over California who are also studying Japanese.  There are only 2 sites in California where you can take the JLPT (San Francisco and Los Angeles), and as a result, some people traveled far to come to the test site. In fact, currently, there are only 13 sites in the U.S. where you can take the JLPT.

The test results will be released in the United States sometime in early February of 2014.  I look forward to finding out how I scored on each section of the test, but regardless of what score I receive, I am thankful for all of the hours that friends spent helping me to study and now look forward to studying for the JLPT N4, the next highest level of the test.  Step by step, I hope to improve my language skills and eventually pass the N2 or higher.  頑張ります!

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新しいことば New Vocabulary

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Today, I finished studying the JLPT N5 level vocabulary list!  The list had about 600 new vocabulary words.  I think that I remember most of them, so from now I want to focus more on studying grammar.  I am so grateful to all of my Japanese-speaking friends that have helped with my study of Japanese.. thank you so much!

今日、私は日本語検定試験N5のことばリストの勉強を終えました! 600くらいの新しいことばをおぼえました。 私は、ほとんどのことばをおぼえたと思います。 だから、私はもうぶんぽうを勉強したいです。私は日本語の勉強を手伝ってくれた友達すべてに感謝しています。どうもありがとう!

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Japanese Studies You’ll Never Neglect 言語学習

This month I applied for a CLS program scholarship.  The CLS, or Critical Language Scholarship program, offers scholarships funded by the U.S. Department of State to increase the number of students studying languages that are considered critically needed.  There are currently 13 different languages within the CLS program, the two most competitive of which are Chinese and Arabic. Others include Urdu, Korean, Russian, Hindi, and Indonesian.  The CLS program covers all of the costs associated with studying abroad for 7 to 10 weeks, including airfare, tuition, room and board (though you will need a valid passport). 

I applied for the Japanese language program, in which those chosen can attend a 2-month Intermediate Japanese course at Himeji Dokkyo University in Japan.   It had the requirement that applicants have at least 2 years of Japanese language study (whether through self-study and/or college courses) by June of 2014.  Fortunately I meet the requirements, because I will have studied Japanese for exactly that length of time by next June.  I hope that I am selected to participate!  If not, I plan to apply again in the future.

During the process of submitting my application, I discovered the YouTube channel of one of the CLS Japanese language program alumnis.  For example, the above video is the first in a 3-part series, titled “Japanese Studies You’ll Never Neglect 言語学習”.  She also has many other videos at her channel with great advice for learning the Japanese language.  I hope you enjoy watching!

Budgeting good meals

c24b2dde6515138ffd314c60c4b0bc0fIf there is one life skill that I am very glad my mom taught me, it is how to shop for food and do meal planning.  I never realized how useful this would be!  For example, she taught me that you can save a lot of money by planning in advance what you want to cook.  This also eliminates having to do unnecessary shopping trips.  When I first went shopping on my own, I forgot about this and made haphazard purchases.  On arriving home, I realized that I had plenty of ingredients, but that it would be difficult to make many meals without the right combination of items.  I had to keep going back to the store to get things that I had forgotten or that I needed to make a complete meal.  Since then, I have decided to shop more intentionally, like my mom.

I like to cook healthy food, and also food that is ethnic. In addition, I don’t care much for certain foods from the typical American diet, like a lot of red meat, etc.  Some people think that making a variety of healthy meals is expensive, but I think that it is completely possible for a college student to cook good, healthy food for approximately 100$ a month.  If your budget is very tight, I think that it is even possible to stay within less, if you are careful. Continue reading

秋のPositive Attitude

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Autumn is fast approaching!  Today my housemates had the idea to decorate for October.  I appreciate the festive atmosphere, and look forward to the holidays.  I also feel that no matter what happens, it’s going to be a good week!  Or rather, I am determined it will be. Over the weekend, I was able to finish some homework ahead of time so that I have breathing space at the beginning of the week, and school-stress has subsided.

It’s easy to get caught up in stress temporarily when material is challenging, but I’ve realized that changing one’s attitude about the difficulty can make a huge difference in the possibility of making progress.  It is easy to encourage others, but just as important to allow oneself to be encouraged.  This type of encouragement must be independent of circumstances, because circumstances will never be ideal.  Instead, it is helpful to (1) recall your strengths and abilities, (2) recognize what is hard for you and how to approach difficulties differently, and (3) choose to have a positive attitude, regardless of what happens.  It is this type of stalwart optimism that seems to characterize many successful people, when it is accompanied by work.  Perhaps this idea of the impact of attitude is summarized well by one of history’s most ingenuitive, yet industrious men:

“If you say you can or you can’t you are right either way”
― Henry Ford

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