Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It's that time of year...

Everyone is bustling around getting their Christmas shopping done.
It's busy and crowded and stressful.

I want to know what is the best Christmas present you have ever received?!


will be playing a short set at an open mic night
at 70's Bar Slow Hands in Kyoto this Sunday the 5th.
It's free but there is no real schedule,
we will be playing some time after 7pm.
So come and have a drink with us
before we start if you are not busy.
Follow the link below for a map


Last Saturday in playschool we had a DINOSAUR theme
and we made some dinosaur feet.
Look at our scary monsters!

We're gonna need a bigger boat!

The poll question last week was,
"Which is the biggest?"
Well the most popular answers were,
Enormous with 40%
Gargantuan with 60%
They all just mean really big.
There is no one answer as to which one is the biggest.
So just choose the one that you think sounds BIGGER!
And according to our poll GARGANTUAN sounds the biggest!
Thanks to everyone who voted.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

I don't get it...

Click the above image to enlarge.
Have you read the English cartoons
on the Japan Times website?
If not have a look. Some of them are pretty funny.
Dahl's Japan is very political
and can be a little hard to understand
if you are not interested in Japanese politics.
But Zero Gravity and Noodles are about
regular "life in Japan type stuff."
They are a good way to see how
some foreigners view Japanese culture.
Follow this link to see what I'm talking about.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Photo of the week!!

Last week we celebrated Thanksgiving in Playschool class! Here is an awesome photo of our Turkey hats!!

What did I do on the long weekend?

Can anyone guess where I went? This is a really easy one. You can see the castle in the photo below. Some of the famous foods that I ate in this prefecture included miso pork, flat udon and eel.

There was a chrysanthemum festival going on.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Studio Ghibli!!!!

Last week the poll question was:

What are your favorite Studio Ghibli movies?

Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (1 vote)
Castle in the Sky
Grave of the Fireflies (1 vote)
My Neighbour Totoro (2 votes)
Kiki's Delivery Service (3 votes)
Porco Rosso (1 vote)
Ocean Waves
Pom Poko
Princess Mononoke (2 votes)
Spirited Away (3 votes)
Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea (2 votes)
Tales from Earthsea (1 vote)

As many of my students know I have been trying to watch all of the Studio Ghibli movies and love talking about them in class. I was surprised by many of the votes on last weeks poll because the most popular ones were Kiki's Delivery service (which I voted for) and Spirited Away (which is not really close to being my favorite....). However, I still have many to watch! What do you recommend for me to watch next?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

What did you call me?

Rachel's post about thanksgiving got me thinking about turkeys,
and more specifically birds.
We have lots of idioms in English that use birds.
If you call someone a "Turkey" "Bird brain"
or in Australia a "Galah"
you are saying that they are foolish.
If you call someone an "Early bird"
you are saying they love to wake up very early in the morning,
and the opposite is a "Night owl".
Can you think of any more?
Or are there Japanese idioms that use birds?
Please let me know in the comments below.

This week in playschool...

...we are celebrating Thanksgiving.

We will be making funny turkey crafts.
Unfortunately we will not be eating turkey :(

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Things we say wrong

Found this on the interwebs
Native speakers make mistakes too.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The leaves are falling

Have you been to see the beautiful colored leaves?

On Monday I ventured to Takao, Kyoto to see the Fall foliage and was not disappointed!!! It was gorgeous!!

After hours of hiking around I decided to have some macha to warm me up! :D Nothing like hot macha on a cool Fall day!


Have you ever been to Yogurtland? It is in Namba. When you go inside, first you grab a cup, then you can choose what kind of yogurt you would like to try. You can choose from 16 flavors (..I think..) such as peach, blueberry, raspberry and pomegranate, cheese cake, chocolate cookie, vanilla, etc... You can also mix as many different kinds together as you like! When you have finished selecting your yogurt you have to choose your toppings!! They have a large selection of toppings including bananas, strawberries, cheesecake, cookies, candy, melon, nuts, sprinkles, etc... When you are finished you pay based on the weight of your cup; ¥200 for 100 grams. It's not only fun to make but it's delicious!!!

What I did on the weekend...

I wasn't feeling very well on Monday
(I have a bit of a sore throat.)
So I stayed home and watched a movie.
THE CRAZIES is a remake of a 70's film
from zombie horror legend George A Romero.
I thought it was pretty good
but would only recommend it if you are
a fan of horror movies.
It's not for the faint hearted.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Drum roll please...

So last weeks poll question was

What is the meaning of the word "Bow"?

And the correct answer was...

All of them!!!

To bend forward at the waist as a show of respect. (75%)
A weapon that shoots arrows. (75%)

The front of a ship. (50%)

A kind of tied ribbon. (75%)

A tool used to play instruments like the violin. (75%)
To bend or curve "A bow legged cowboy". (25%)

They are all Homographs
(words that have the same spelling but a different meaning)
and some are Heteronyms
(same spelling but different sound)
(That's my evil laugh!)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Today is Remembrance Day!

Today is a Remembrance Day in Canada and Australia as well as the rest of the Commonwealth. It is called Veterans' Day in America. It is a day of remembrance for the soldiers who fought and died in the war, specially since the First World War. On November 11th, 1918 the war officially ended ''at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month'' . Annually in Canada there is a big parade and service held. At the 11th hour, there is a minute of silence followed by a reading of the poem, In Flanders Fields.

The red poppy has become a familiar symbol of Remembrance Day due to the poem In Flanders Fields. These poppies bloomed across some of the worst battlefields of Flanders in World War I, their brilliant red colour an appropriate symbol for the blood spilt in the war. In Canada poppies are often worn throughout the month of November in the form of a pin on your jacket or handbag.

The poem In Flanders Field was written by a Canadian physician and Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae. It is recited and memorized in schools all across Canada.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Pidgin English 101

Ho cuz, mahalos yeah fo checking out anothah lesson of pidgin english. Shoots den, brah! We go get stahted!

Welcome to another lesson in pidgin english. I hope you all had fun with the previous lesson. Here we go with another lesson. Well, let's get started!

Today's word is buss up. It comes from bust up, which can also mean broken or damaged. Let's see how this word is used. Sometimes it can be also used to describe a really drunk person.

Pidgin English: My kah stay all buss up l'dat.

English: My automobile is quite damaged and probably won't be able to make its next few miles.

K, so das it fo today's pidgin lesson. You bettah stay akamai and stay in skool. K den bra, take it easy! Shooooots!

Ok, so that's it for today's pidgin English lesson. Everybody should be smart and stay in school. Take care and hope to see you again at our next lesson. Mahalos!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Tongue Twisters

Here is a very challenging tongue
twister for you to get all tongue tied while trying.

Once upon a barren moor

There dwelt a bear, also a boar.
The bear could not bear the boar.
The boar thought the bear a bore.
At last the bear could bear no more
Of that boar that bored him on the moor,
And so one morn he bored the boar -
That boar will bore the bear no more.

Last week in playschool class...

...we learned about transportation!! Phil had a great craft idea to make boats out of random household products and see if it would float. We had a lot of fun playing in the tub of water after too :p Take a look at our boats in the photo below! My boat was freaking awesome!!

Nursery rhyme of the week!

This is a rather strange nursery rhyme, however, I thought it would be nice as it has a pumpkin in it and it's autumn season.


I'm sure you have all been dieing to see the photos from the adults Halloween party and here they are!! We really had a great time at the party! All of the student's costumes were awesome and the party games were really fun! :D

Special thanks to Phil and Ai for making the wicked paper mache pumpkin pinatas!!

Congratulations to Keiko, Masa, Yui and Megumi, the costume contest winners this year!!

On Halloween weekend I ...

...watched Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter in the Tim Burton musical movie, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barbra of Fleet Street. I have to say it was much, much scarier and graphic than I was expecting! This was the first musical that I have seen that was ...well kind of disgusting. It was also my first time to see Johnny Depp playing an evil role which was actually very good!! I thought the music was really good but I will leave it at that.

Have you seen this movie before? What did you think?

Sorry for my absence...

Just in case anyone did notice that I was absent from the blog last week, I can reassure you that I am back and better than ever!! I had a really terrible sore throat last week and was not feeling my best. After a very restful weekend I am feeling much better and hope that you will enjoy all the new posts that I am planning this week!!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

What I did yesterday...

I went to Kyoto station (Isetan Gallery)
to see black and white "Etchings"
by the Netherlandish artist
Pieter Bruegel the Elder
Click on the picture to see a bigger image
Some of them were really weird!
And I like weird stuff...
Reminded me of nightmares.
Here is a link if you are interested



This week it's a tricky one...

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Poll

Last week the poll question was:
Are you coming to the RLE Halloween party on Saturday?

Maybe. I'm not sure yet.

Woot woot for everyone that came to celebrate Halloween with us! We all had so much :D

Here are some photos from the morning kids party!!