Friday, April 24, 2015

Third contact: I'm frustrated


フィクションです。

英会話相手がければ、一人ディベートをしよう。
以前からしているが、ほとんどの問題は解決する。
しかも、意外な答えにびっくりする。 
そりゃそうさ。問題の発生源は、自分のものの見方、考え方なんだもの。


I work at two crammers*.  I teach English at one of them, but not the other.  I’m frustrated.  Why can’t I teach English, though I have a lot of experience and knowledge, as well as teaching skills?  Instead, I do reading comprehension in Japanese, although I’m not good at reading Japanese.
*crammer:塾、予備校

So I decided to ask my friend, Mr. Light, about it.

“Hello, Mr. Light.  How’re you doing?”

Then, there appeared an orange light floating in front of me,saying,
“Good, thank you.  And you?”

“I’m OK, thanks.  Now, can I ask you a question?”

“Go ahead.”

“Why can’t I teach English at a crammer, though I do at the other?”

Mr. Light answered loud and clear.
“Because you want to quit the crammer.  Because you don’t want to work there. And because you don’t believe you belong to it.  That’s why.”

I’m really shocked to hear those words.  Actually, I always think so, and I don’t want to teach English to junior high schoolers because it’s too easy.

“So what should I do?  I want to be happy about things.”

Mr Light answered on the spot.
“It’s easy.  You have only to accept the situation.  Because you are unwilling to work with them, you are frustrated.  Teaching English doesn’t matter.”

“What do you mean?”  I asked him.

“If you should teach English, you will still get frustrated, saying, ‘I don’t want to teach English to junior high schoolers.  It’s boring.’”

I couldn’t help but agree with him.  Then I said,
“So, do you mean I’m lucky not to teach them?”

“Absolutely.”

“Well, now I’m beginning to feel happy.  And, actually, I teach English at the other crammer, where I enjoy teaching English to senior high schoolers.”

Now I’m happy.  And I understand the mechanism.  I will get the outcome as I want to; I thought it was boring to work at one crammer, and that thought made me get frustrated with working there.  I think I’m happy working the other crammer, so I can enjoy working there.   

Umm…it’s interesting.

“I’m very happy to talk to you, Mr. Light.  Thank you.”
“Me, too.  See you again.”  Then the orange light disappeared.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Second contact: what to do to be a great teacher?



フィクションです。

“Hello, Mr. Light.  I have some questions.”
“I'm listening.” said Mr. Light, floating in the air before me, emitting orange light.

“Well, I was impressed by the words, 'The great teacher inspires,'  and I'm wondering what to do to inspire my students.”

“Then, what did you do?”  Mr. Light asked me.

“I used to explain how to solve the problem, while writing a lot of things on the blackboard.  But I thought I was too serious.  So I started to tell jokes or funny things during the class.”

“How do they respond?”

“Apparently they are embarrassed.  They don't know if they should laugh.”

“What you do is wrong.  You can’t inspire them.” Mr. Light said clearly.

“Why?” I responded.

“Because you just want to inspire them.”

“Yes, I want to inspire them, but don’t know how.  So what's wrong with me?”

“You can't inspire them as long as you want to do so.

“Pardon?”  I was completely lost by his words.

“Remember the words, 'The great teacher inspires.'  It doesn't mean the great teacher knows how to inspire students.  It's because they are great that students are inspired.” 

“So?
“So all you've got to do is be great.  Period.”

I've just got to be great.  That's right.  But how?  I'm not great.  What should I do?  So I asked Mr. Light again.

“So what should I do to be great?”

“It's very easy.  You just remember who you are.  You are a unique person.  You are the only one who can be you.  So remember you are precious, you are marvelous and you are great, to begin with!” 

Saying so, Mr. Light is glowing more brightly and covered my whole body with his light.
I had this feeling before, but I didn’t remember when.

Then Mr. Light said, “Remember, you are great just as you are.  You don’t have to do anything to be great or to inspire students.”

“All right.  Thank you, Mr. Light.  Good bye.”

“Good bye.”  Mr. Light disappeared.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Hello, Mr. Light : the first contact

連載小説になればと思います。フィクションです。


I woke up very early this morning.  It was four thirty. 

Since last Saturday, I’ve got a cold.  So I stopped working,  went home and went to bed earlier.  That’s why.

It’s still dark outside.  It was too early, but I decided to get up.

I went to the kitchen to drink a glass of water, thinking I would go to bed again in half an hour.  

Then something strange happened.

I saw an orange light in the eastern sky through the window.

“What’s that?” I said to myself.  Then the light started moving and came through the window, without broken, and stopped and was floating in the air before me.  It is no larger than a pill. 

I saw the light.
I didn’t feel any fear.  Instead, I felt something warm in my heart.

I said to it, “Hello.  Who are you?”

Then the light answered.  “My name is Grey.”

“Oh, come on.  Grey doesn’t look like you.  And it’s a bad alien.”

“I’m not Grey,” the light answered, “I didn’t say anything.  You said so.”

“What do you mean?”  I wondered.

“I am just like a mirror.  I reflect your mind.  I say nothing.  But you will perceive something in your mind as my words.  That’s why I am like a mirror.”

“So, you are not Grey?”

“I’m not Grey because you don’t think so.”

“Are you a moe chara, just like Azu-nyan?”

The light answered in a cute voice, “I can be anything you think of, my master.”

Wow, that’s very interesting, I thought in my mind.  I feel something exciting is going to happen.

“Something exciting is going to happen,” soon, the light repeated, “because you think so.”

“Anyway, what do you want to be called?”  I asked the light.

“How about Mr. Light?”

“Oh, that’s what crossed in my mind.  OK, Mr. Light.  Well, I will go to bed.  How can I see you again?  What should I do if I want to see you?”

“Don’t worry about it.  You already know it.  If you think about me, I’ll be with you anytime soon,” so said Mr. Light and disappeared.  This is my first contact with Mr. Light.

I suddenly noticed some noise from the outside.  I saw the clock.  It’s already six thirty.  A new day has already started.  And I’m sure the day will be very exciting.

Monday, April 20, 2015

The great teacher inspires.

The great teacher inspires.

この言葉は、10年くらい前から知ってた。

でも、実感できなかった。

というか、何をすれば inspire できるのか、わからなかった。

内田樹氏の「先生はえらい」もその当時読んだ。

以来10年たって、ついにわかった。

別に、上手に教えるとか、理路整然とした説明とか、どうでもいいんだ。

考えてみれば、自分が英語に憧れたきっかけは何か?

ビートルズやストーンズやツェッペリンだ。

そしてそれがよくかかる FEN のかっこいい英語だ。

そしてその解説書の「FENを聴く」を書いた松本道弘であり、そして何と言っても、the Best Hit USAの小林克也である。

考えてみれば、松本氏が話す英語は10年くらい前まで聞いたことがなかった。

でも、速読の英語を読んで、うわぁ、この人、すげぇ。

俺もTimeを速読したい、と思った。

そして、小林氏の英語は、No. 10 Hall and Oats, "Private Eyes", No. 9 Michael Jackson, "Billy Jean", No. 8 Foreigner, "I've been waiting for a girl like you" みたいな順位とアーティスト名と曲名を言うだけだ。

でも、その声と発音で、うぉー、こうなりたい!と思った。

これが The great teacher inspires. だよね。

だから、明日からは、授業の予習とか授業の組みたてを、違う視点からすることにした。

先生の仕事とは。

よい先生になることにした。

よい先生とは何か?

これまで、塾や予備校や、教材製作の仕事を25年近くしてきた。

常に思っていたのは、2点。

一つは、わかりやすい説明で、生徒の学力を伸ばすこと。

そのために、来る日も来る日も、創意工夫を凝らす。


もう一つは、自分の思い描く最高の授業をすること。

他の先生より面白い授業をするのではない。

ライバルは自分。

理想の授業をしたい。

でも、その足を引っ張る自分の弱さ、消極性、謙虚さなどとの戦いだ。


ところが、今日、そのモデルを捨てることにした。

それは、そのモデルは間違っていることに気づいたからだ。


先生の仕事は、単純だ。

生徒のやる気に火をつければいい。

あとは勝手に伸びていく。

The mediocre teacher tells. 

The good teacher explains. 

The superior teacher demonstrates. 

The great teacher inspires.