Friday, December 25, 2009

Today is Christmas!! I was very good this year and Santa found me :) I enjoyed a big Christmas dinner with turkey, mash potatoes and gravy! It was delicious!! Hope you all had a good Christmas as well and best wishes for the New Year! See you in 2010.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Thank You!!! Goodbye!!

Thanks to all my wonderful students for being so kind and hard-working this past year. It's with deep sadness that I say goodbye to all of you this week, and move on to the next chapter in my life. I will never forget all the laughs and giggles, as well as all the good conversations we had. I love you all, truly! I have learned so much about Japan, family, friends, kindness and life from many of you in this past year, it feels as though I wasn't always the teacher but often I was the student as well.

This afternoon three of my lovely, hard-working students Tomoko, Asami and Mayumi (and Ayumi, who had to leave earlier), presented me with something that almost brought me to tears...A heart-shaped book of messages and photos from many of my students. My heart almost burst. Thank you thank you thank you.I love you too!
I love sushi! Yes I do.
I must love Oguri Shun if I use his picture in my lessons...OK maybe I do have a small crush on him. Go ahead, laugh at me as I blush. I'm a 15 year old girl at heart.
Some of many awesome messages from my beloved students!
And many, many pictures of the fun times I've had at RLE...The girls had also made a very thorough guide complete with maps of my new neighborhood that I am moving to next week. I have so many new restaurants and cafes to look forward to going to!! Thanks girls!!

Thanks so much to everyone who had so many kind words when we said goodbye. I will keep you in my memory forever!! I hope to see you all again one day. I'm not leaving Japan just YET!! :) Let's keep in touch in the New Year!!


Tongue Twister of the Week

Santa sings shining star songs!

Grumpy Grinch goes grizzly gus!

It's Christmas Eve!!!

On Christmas eve in North America children are allowed to pick ONE present from under the Christmas tree to open! It is a real treat but also very difficult to choose the first present to open.

Traditionally in my family, my sister and I open Christmas pajamas! My Grammy gives us Christmas pajamas every year so we know which present to open. Then on Christmas morning we look very nice and Christmas-y opening our presents and seeing if Santa came!

Tonight I will also open one present from under my Christmas tree! EEEKKKK!! I'm so excited! Merry almost Christmas everyone!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas Parties!

We had some great Christmas parties last Saturday!!! Thank you to everyone who joined in the fun. Below is a photo from our We Can2 class Christmas party and our all ages big Christmas party. In the photos the students are making Christmas cards for mom and dad as well as decorating Christmas cookies!!

If you were at the adult's Christmas party and have some great photos, please send them to us!!!

RLE Blog!

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Is there anything you would like to see on the blog?

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Please tell us what you think!! Post questions or comments in the comment link below any of the posts seen on the blog and we will write you back!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Tongue Twister of the Week

Candy cane cookies keep kids coming!

Santa's super souped sleigh swiftly slides!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Onomatopoeias: Christmas Edition!

What sound do the little silver bells on your Christmas wreath make when you open your door?
'tinkle tinkle!'What is the onomatopoeia for blinking Christmas lights and shining stars in the sky?
'twinkle twinkle!'What sound do the big church bells make at midnight on Christmas Eve?
'ding! dong! ding! dong!'What sound does Santa Clause make as he eats the Christmas cookies you left for him by the tree?
'Crunch! Crunch!'What sound does the cold, snowy wind make as it blows by outside your window?
'Whoooshhh! Whoooshhh!'

The Santa Claus Parade!

Custom #14: Christmas Parades

The Santa Claus parade is a tradition that has occurred in North America for many years. Similar to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade already mentioned on this blog, the Christmas parade marks the beginning of the Christmas holiday season.

The Toronto Santa Claus parade has made its way through the streets of downtown Toronto since 1905 and is the longest running children's parade in the world. It is also the overall largest parade in the world!! Parade floats include nursery rhyme characters, marching bands, clowns, and of course the last and most exciting float, Santa and his reindeer!!!!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Kobe Illuminary !!

Yesterday I went to Kobe Luminary!! It was so big and bright and beautiful!! I have never seen such a magical sight and there were soooo many great places to eat along the way! I was really happy to experience this event even though there were many people and it was really cold. :)

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Tongue Twister of the Week

Sally's striped stocking's stuffed slightly.

Cherry cute caroling Christmas critters.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Christmas Around the World...


In Venezuela, Christmas is celebrated as a religious holiday.The presents are brought by “El Niño Jesus” (Baby Jesus) instead of “Papá Noél” (Santa Claus), that still has an important role during this season. The unofficial start of the Christmas festivities is after the celebrations of "Feria de la Chinita", second half of November.

Czech Republic and Slovakia

Christmas Eve (December 24) is the celebrated as 'vetnome colen hide', which means "open-handed day", when the gifts are given in the evening. However, December 25 and 26 are also holidays. According to tradition, gifts are brought by Ježíšek, or "baby Jesus". Many very old Christmas traditions are followed, mostly for fun. People are taught to fast (stop eating) on Christmas Eve until a ceremonial dinner is served, in order to be able to see a "golden pig". Carp is a popular dish for the dinner. The gifts are displayed under the Christmas tree (usually a spruce or pine), and people open them after their Christmas dinner.


In Poland, Christmas Eve is a day first of fasting, then of feasting. The feast begins with the appearance of the first star, and is followed by the exchange of gifts. The giftbearer in Poland is Swiety Mikolaj or Saint Nicholas. The following day is often spent visiting friends. Although gift giving plays a major role in the rituals, emphasis is placed more on making special foods and decorations.

This Week's Theme Class

In this week's theme class we played an English word making game called Scrabble! It's really fun but also challanging for English students.

Thursday, December 10, 2009


It is an old custom of Christmas cheer that any two people who meet under a hanging of mistletoe are supose to kiss. It is a sign of friendship and goodwill and is sometimes interpreted as a prediction of happiness and long life.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Christmas Vocabulary

North American Customs

Custom #13: Christmas stockings

On Christmas eve families hang an empty sock or sock-shaped bag on their fireplace mantle, bedpost, or so that Santa Claus can fill it with small toys, candy or other small gifts. These items are called stocking stuffers! Some families create their own stockings with each family member's name applied to the stocking so that Santa will know which stocking belongs to which family member. A common Western tradition is that children who behave badly during the year will receive a piece of coal instead of presents!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Nursery Rhyme of the Week!!

Little Jack Horner

Sat in the corner,

Eating a Christmas pie:

He put in his thumb,

And pulled out a plum,

And said, ''What a good boy am I!''

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Tongue Twister of the Week

Pretty packages perfectly packed.
Tip-top tiny tot toys.

Today, in our We Can 2 class, we had two December birthdays!! We sang Happy Birthday to Ayaka whose birthday was yesterday, December 4th, and to Chisato whose birthday is on Monday, December 7th. Hope you have a great day girls! :)

Friday, December 4, 2009

Milk and Cookies

It is a known tradition in North America to leave milk and cookies for Santa on Christmas eve; and some carrot sticks for the reindeer if you really want to impress Santa. It is common belief among children that Santa will be hungry after his long flight around the world and would enjoy this little snack (and cookies are his favorite). In the morning the milk and cookies will be gone and presents will be left under the Christmas tree!!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Riddle of the day

1. What do elves learn in school?

2. What do snowmen eat for breakfast?

3. What's the best thing to put into a Christmas cake?

Answers: 1. the elf-abet, 2. snowflakes, 3. your teeth

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Slang of the Day!


This character originates from Charles Dickens' 1843 novel, A Christmas Carol. Scrooge was a man who hated Christmas and anything about the festive holiday season, often saying ''Bah Humbug''!! In the story, magically, three ghosts appear before Scrooge; the ghosts of his Christmas past, present, and future. In the end Scrooge learns that he should be nice and giving.

So from this story we have the term scrooge: a miserable person who is unwilling to give or share their good fortune with others.


A. Hey, can I have a piece of bread please?

B. No you may not, just because I have an unlimited supply of bread, does not mean you can have some!

A. Hey come on, don't be such a scrooge!!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

More Onomatopoeias!

Welcome to the second edition of Fun Onomatopoeias!
Last time we brought you some good ones for animals, door bells and car horns. This week we'll give you more animal sounds!
Do you remember what cats and dogs say? Meow! and woof!
Here are some more animal sounds:
Mice, hamsters and other rodents say squeek! squeek!
Doves and pigeons say coo! coo! (make your voice shake a bit for added effect)
Hens say cluck! cluck! and roosters yell cockadoodledooooo!
Turkeys say gobble! gobble!
Horses say neigh! neigh!
Goats and sheep say baa! baa!

image from of

Today is December!

Do you know what this means to many North American children? It is the first day to begin the annual Christmas count down on your advent calendar!! What is an advent calendar you ask? It is a special calendar which is used to count or celebrate the days of Advent in anticipation of Christmas. Most commonly they are large rectangular and thin cardboard boxes with many ''windows''. One window is opened everyday during Advent to reveal an image, a poem, a part of a story or a small gift such as a toy or chocoloate! The number of doors can also increase to cover Christmas Day to New Year's Day.