CEWL has been delivering exchange programmes with Kogakkan University and Kobe Women’s University in Japan since 2015. This year, Akihiro Furugo from Kogakkan University and Momoka Taresawa from Kobe Women’s University came to Kent on the 10th of February and stayed with us for two weeks.
Despite the weather (including Storm Dennis!), they were very keen to learn how we teach Japanese at Kent and helped our students actively in Japanese modules and Language Express courses. In a busy schedule, they also joined some English Language and Academic Skills Workshops modules and observed seminars of other World Languages modules. Students taking Japanese modules and courses enjoyed talking to them in Japanese, exchanging a cultural talk, and most importantly making friends with Japanese students.
At the end of the programme, I interviewed Akihiro and Momoka to ask them what they thought about these two weeks.
What did you think or notice in seminars of Japanese modules/courses?
Akihiro: As I’m native in Japanese, I’d never thought about which Japanese word is easy or difficult. But when I talk to Japanese learners, I’ve noticed I have to choose words and phrases carefully, depending on at which level the learner is. And it wasn’t easy.
Momoka: In the seminar, students discussed manners in Japan and in what kind of situation children are told off in their own countries, and it was very interesting for me. At Kent, students from many different countries are studying together and it gives diverse ideas and opinions in seminars.
Outside seminars, what was the most memorable thing for you in the programme?
Momoka: It was a good experience for me to go to the town of Canterbury and the cathedral. I read the Canterbury Tales in Japan. In the town, I could feel a long history of England and it was a memorable experience.
Akihiro: Not many students talked to me after seminars. It might reflect a lack of my English skill or knowledge of Japanese teaching. Throughout the programme at Kent, I’ve got more confidence in my English in a daily conversation. But in the same time, I also have got a motivation to improve it to a higher level.
In April, Kent students will visit their Universities in Japan.
If you have questions related to studying Japanese at Kent, or the Japanese exchange programme, please contact World Languages Tutor, Mano Suzuki (M.Suzuki@kent.ac.uk) or World Languages manager, Fumiyo Nemoto-Smith (F.Nemoto-Smith@kent.ac.uk).
Mano Suzuki, World Languages Tutor