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It was NOT where I wanted to spend my Friday night:  in the principal’s office of my 13 year old’s Jr High School.      It all began a week ago when Alfie was LATE home from school.   This wouldn’t normally be a concern since kids in Japan walk home on their own and […]

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We’re often asked by family if we miss America / England?  The honest answer is no.   We love living in Japan with our two kids.   There is so much about their childhood that their cousins back home can’t have or do.   #1. Freedom:    Children in Japan have freedom to go out […]

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Amy and I came to Japan, in 1996.  Very happy with our job, accomodation, new friends, food, new places…..    But the neighborhood night scene was like pre-war Britain:  I’m guessing here.    Tokyo is brilliant for nightlife, but we wanted to meet people where we lived, in Saitama.    The turning point was seeing famous […]

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      Traditionally, children’s English teaching in Japan has relied heavily on FUN lessons.   But what is FUN?   Why the emphasis on FUN?   Was any real learning occurring?     Students coming to us from other “FUN” schools seemed to indicate: probably not.                  […]

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Many teachers overthink lesson planning.   I think it is best to keep things simple.    This is the basic plan we use for 1 hour elementary school lessons at Dave and Amy English School.   30 minutes:    2 fifteen minute activities or 3 ten minute ones.   Mainly done at the table in […]

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Many people dream of opening their own English School.   Well, you’re in luck.   Japan makes it extremely easy to start a business.    And the start up fees for opening an English School can be minimal.      My first piece of advice: KEEP your job.   Grow student numbers / your school in […]

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My English Book and Me 3 Classbook and Homebook are ABC phonics texts.   Children will learn many new words as they learn their phonics.   There is constant review and re-enforcement with mini – tests.   Students also learn conversational questions and answers.        We use MEB3 with ANY beginning elementary student […]

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This is the Kindergarten Lessons at Dave and Amy English School:   Goals   Before elementary school, students should be able to: 1.  Know Lots of Vocabulary 2.  Ask and Answer Simple Questions and Answers 3.  Sing simple English Songs 4.  Recognize all 26 Lowercase Letters: begin reading 5.  Know the Phonetic Sounds of all […]

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At Dave and Amy English School, we have many returnees and students from other schools.    We do a level check to decide the best lesson for them.  We check reading, writing, speaking and comprehension.  We have found it’s best to begin easily and steadily challenge the child more.  This allows the child to be […]

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I am often asked by potential students, can my (for example) 2nd grade child join the lesson with his 5th grade sibling.    I answer, IF they are both beginners, YES.      Why?  Because beginners are beginners.   It doesn’t matter if they are in 1st grade or in 6th grade.   If they […]

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