Saturday, June 27, 2009

Rockin' Out!

Today's pre-school was extra noisy because we made lots of instruments! Below is a sample of the guitars, tambourines and drums we put together. The kids really enjoyed rocking out as a band once we were finished making them. Next week, we're celebrating Canada Day and Independence Day. We'll be making flags, windsocks and hats. As always we'll be singing lots of songs and learning some dances. So much to look forward to!!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

台湾にいってきました!!I Went to Taiwan!

Last week, I went to Taiwan to visit my friends. It was my first time visiting this country. I had an awesome time there. My favorite part of the trip was enjoying the delicious Taiwanese food. The flavors were very similar to Japanese foods. Here is a sample of the kinds of meals I ate while there.
My second favorite part of the trip was having a Taiwanese massage. It was so cheap! 90 minutes cost only 3000yen. The masseuse was very talented and courteous.
I got to visit Kaoshoun, and next time I want to visit Taipei. Taiwanese people were so friendly and I highly recommend visiting their country. Perhaps I will start learning to speak Taiwanese!



I just want to say THANK YOU to my coworkers and students who wished me a happy birthday. I had a wonderful birthday and it was all thanks to all of you. That night I had a very nice yakiniku dinner. Mmmm sooo ono (hawaiian for delicious). And the next day was also my wife's birthday. Yup, so we celebrate my birthday and when it hits 12:00am it's my wife's turn!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Happy Birthday Yoshi

June has been filled with birthdays!! Today is Yoshi`s birthday so we had a surprise party for him at work! When he went on break we decorated the office and his desk! We also had a cake and candles for him to blow out. He was very surprised!! Check out the celebration photos below.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Happy Father's Day!!

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there! Today in pre-school we made lots of special Father's Day crafts using colored paper and our foot prints. Below is a photo of all the crafts we made for Dad.Tomorrow is the real Father's Day and I am going to send my Dad in Canada a surprise in the mail and give him an important phone call all the way from Japan. That way he will know how special he is to me! What special things are you going to do for your father on Father's Day?

Hope you have a happy and relaxing day Dad. xox
~ Rachel

Friday, June 19, 2009


Here is a chick from Hakata. It was deliciously sweet. Many thanks to my student who keeps bringing me treats. While unnecessary, these tasty gifts always brighten my day and make my belly just a little bit rounder.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

And now for mountain metaphors!!!

Learning a language can seem like climbing the highest mountain. You can stand at the bottom looking up in excitement, or roam around in frustration while looking for the easiest way to the top. You can throw yourself in and hope for the best, but quickly realize what a daunting task this high mountain has become, and that you probably should have trained your body beforehand.For me, learning Japanese has been like climbing fuji-san. At first, I thought anyone could do it on their own if they had enough time and willpower. Then I realized that there is more than one route you can take, and that it's a more enjoyable trek if you don't do it alone. I also came to terms with the fact that climbing fuji-san would be less challenging if I started with smaller mountains first, and perhaps even with hills and hikes through flat woods.So really, climbing fuji-san has become a lot like my journey in learning a new language. I now know that you can't just buy the best language audio-cd you've heard of, subscribe to all the podcasts you can find, and read all the language books for busy people. You need to surround yourself with native speakers and fellow learners to make the journey more rewarding. You musn't buy into the latest 'Learn English in 10 days or less!!" gimmick, because with languages, it's about setting realistic goals and starting from the ground up. And finally, you must remember that much like climbing a mountain, the view gets better and better the closer you get to the top. Before you know it, you begin to accomplish tasks in your new language that you never thought possible. When this happens, you realize you could never abandon this mountain without setting your flag at the peak.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Ask us questions!!

Being polite is a culturally defined phenomenon and what is considered polite in one culture can often be quite rude or strange in another culture. An interruption is an abrupt stop in a conversation in which one person cuts short the sentence of another person speaking to share their own opinion. Interrupting is considered a bad habit for many English speaking people; however it is useful and perfectly appropriate at times while rude and impolite at other times. So when is it ok and when is it considered rude?

*Adults tend to get excited when discussing an important topic and impulsively interrupt the person speaking.
*Similarly adults tend to assume that they know what the other person is going to say next and interrupt by saying it before them; robbing the speaker of their chance to say it in their own way.
*Often people will interrupt aggressively if the speaker is talking nonsense or they do not agree with what they are saying.
*Interrupting is also a common way to change a conversation topic.
*Children might interrupt because they like being the center of attention or because of bad manners and not knowing any better.

It is considered perfectly acceptable to interrupt another person if it is to show concern or to clarify something you didn't understand. So please feel free to interrupt your teacher with English questions!!!

It's raining, It's pouring

It's raining, it's pouring;
The old man is snoring.
He went to bed and heBumped his head
And he couldn't get up in the morning.

I hope you are staying dry during this rainy season!! Yesterday started as a beautiful, hot, sunny day but unexpectedly turned into an eeri e (creepy) light show (thunderstorm) in the middle of the afternoon! What am I talking about; a light show? I am referring to the physical phenomena known as thunder and lightning! Lightning occurs when the temperature and pressure of the air change rapidly, resulting in electricity. Thunder is the sound made by lightning (electricity). It can be a sharp, loud crack or a long, low rumble depending on the distance of the listener.

Did you know that there are more than 16 million lightning storms in the world every year?!?

Rainy Season Vocabulary:

Soaked - covered with water
Drenched - soaked to the skin
Sopping wet - wet through and through
Dripping wet - soaked to the skin and dripping with water
Pouring - heavy rain
Raining cats and dogs - raining really hard

Friday, June 5, 2009


So it has already hit June. Time flies sooo quick! This month is also a month of birthdays. Do you have a lot of friends born in June? Well, I sure do. And that means having to sing "Happy Birthday" to them. And who doesn't love that? So, to sing birthday songs, we here at RLE started making guitars. Yes, that's right. GUITARS! With a guitar, you can sing happy birthday to that special someone (-_☆)キラーン Or you can create a band and sing happy birthday to your friends, family, and loved ones like we did here at RLE. So come on down and lets make our own band!