I live in Tsukaguchi, Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture, just a few minutes by bicycle from my school, Smith’s School of English Tsukaguchi. On Wednesday mornings, I take a Japanese lesson at Amagasaki City Medium and Small Companies Center, located near Hanshin Amagasaki station. It is organized by the Amagasaki City International Association, part of Hyogo Nihongo Volunteers’ Network. The teachers are volunteers and they teach Japanese to foreign residents of Amagasaki. Lessons are man to man, 1.5 hours long and require a very small monthly fee of… 1,000 Yen. I really am lucky to be able to take these Japanese lessons and very much appreciate the time and kindness of the volunteers.
The last time I went (yesterday), my usual teacher couldn’t come, so 2 new volunteers were assigned to me and we talked. They asked me questions about my background and current life in Japan. Although I asked them some questions too, the talking focused more on me. I told them that I owned my own English school, a Smith’s School of English franchise school in Tsukaguchi, Amagasaki. I handed both of them my Smith’s business card. One of the volunteers mentioned taking the Eiken Test in Practical English Proficiency (Jitsuyō Eigo Ginō Kentei) and working towards getting the highest level, Grade 1. The other volunteer mentioned that her daughter was studying English at another English school in Tsukaguchi! Oh! (^.^) She also mentioned that she was going to join some kind of locally organized English class in Tsukaguchi and that it was cheap. I warned her that some of my students had taken such classes before joining my school. According to them, class sizes were big with little student talking time. This is the main reason that they came to my school, where group lessons have a maximum of 3 people with much more student talking time. Of course that doesn’t mean that her class would necessarily be like that, but it could. I told her that she could come to my school if things didn’t work out and she agreed! (^.^) As I spoke to them, I wore a Smith’s t-shirt, a Smith’s jacket was on my chair, a Smith’s cap was next to me and my Smith’s business card was on the table in front of them! Wow! You can call me Promotion Man! (^.^)
Derek (Promotion Man) (^.^)/