Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Teaching English in English in Asia

This past summer, we ran a special TEFL program for a group of Korean high school English teachers. The impetus was the Korean government's mandate that English classes there be taught in English. Now it appears that the government of Japan is following suit.

Interestingly, over the holidays we were talking to my niece who is in her first year of junior high school in Japan. She said that her English teacher is an American woman. She was clear that this teacher was not an assistant, but actually her teacher. I found that surprising because she attends a regular public school. When I was teaching in Japan, I also taught the core English classes for the jr 1 students, but it was a big deal. Nobody had heard of a non-Japanese teacher doing this, and we had a bit more flexibility because it was a private school. How times change!

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