Description of four poems

7. English classes in Australia

  She comes into the classroom, showing her white teeth.

  And we narrow our eyes naturally.

  I can talk with her today.

  “Good morning!”

  I hear her cheerful voice.

  “Good morning!”

  I greet her well.

  The seventh poem describes a moment when I took English classes in Australia.  I had two English teachers in Australia.  First, Neeka is from Pakistan.  She liked to tell jokes very much.  Her words always made us laugh.  Second, Sharn is from Australia.  She was very kind, so we were healed by her smile.  They are friendly and spoke to me.  Therefore, I was able to talk with them a lot.  In addition, I practiced to speak English through playing games in their class.  For example, I solved a riddle.  I was looking forward to take their class every day.  (100 words)

8. Making lamington

  “What should I do?”

  There is just a big sponge cake in front of me.

  And there is a riddle.

  I have never seen it.

  I have never eaten it.

  Of course, I have never made it.

  But I have the image of sweet, sweet, taste.

  The eighth poem describes a moment when I made lamington in Australia.  Lamington is famous and traditional sweet in Australia.  However, I didn’t know it.  Of course, I had never made lamington.  But I had to try to make lamington with my friends in English class.  My English teacher gave us a recipe, and I read it.  There were a lot of difficult vocabulary.  Therefore, it was hard for us to make lamington.  The only hint was the picture that was drawn on the recipe.  It was covered with chocolate and sugar, and looked very sweet.  We made lamington, looking at the picture.  (103 words)

9. Asking the way in Australia

  “Where am I?”

  I don’t know the way to go.

  A lot of people pass by me one after another.

  I can’t move from here.

  “Is there anyone who can tell me the way?”

  Then, one woman is passing in front of me.

  “This is chance.”

  I try to ask her the way.

  The ninth poem describes a moment when I went to Sydney with my friends, and we missed the way.  We wanted to go to Luna Park in Sydney.  However, we didn’t know which ferry to take.  Therefore, we had to ask the way to someone, but I didn’t have the courage to talk to anyone.  There was a conflict in my mind, but I was able to talk to a woman in the end.  I was very nervous at that time, and I was able to grow up.  After that, I was able to talk to people positively when I didn’t know anything.  (103 words)

10. Talking with my host father

  “What did you do today?”

  This is the sign that conversation begins.

  What did I do today?

  What will talk about?

  I ask myself.

  The hands of the clock are moving.

  He is waiting for my words with his smile.

  “OK!  Today, I …”

  I begin to talk about what I did today.

  The last poem describes a moment when I talked with my host father.  My host family had a five-month-old boy.  Therefore, my host mother worked and my host father did housework at home.  So my host father always cooked dinner for me.  And I talked about today’s events with my host father at dinner time.  For example, “I went to the beach with my friends after school.”  My host father listened to me with his smile, so I had a lot of fun to tell about what happened today.  My host father was busy, so dinner time was an important time for communication.  (103 words)

Description of six poems

1. The first class at junior high school

  “Hello, everyone!”

  The first class begins.

  I’m sitting on the chair.

  My English teacher and ALT are standing.

  What am I going to study?

  Where is ALT from?

  I have some questions.

  And I also have hope.

  “I want to be like them!”

  I was looking forward to take the first English class at junior high school.  However, I was worried about studying English because I had never studied English until then.  This poem describes a moment when I was nervous right after the first class begins.  My Japanese English teacher’s pronunciation was very beautiful and he could talk with ALT naturally.  In addition, ALT was very kind and polite.  He always taught us English with his smile, so English classes were fun.  Therefore, I wanted to be able to pronounce like my teachers and talk with foreign people.  And I started to try to study English hard.  (105 words)

2. Speaking test at junior high school

  There is no one in this classroom.

  I can’t hear anything in this classroom.

  Just ALT and I are in this classroom.

  This is the speaking test.

  However, I’m very excited.

  What will we talk about?

  The second poem describes a moment when I talked with ALT and read textbook for the speaking test.  Speaking test was done during class, so it was very quiet around the classroom.  It was public test and it concerned my grade.  However, I was enjoying the conversation with ALT, forgetting that this time is the speaking test.  After the speaking test finished, ALT said to me, “Your pronunciation is very good!”  I was glad to hear that.  Thanks to that words, I was able to have confidence.  In addition, it became more fun to study English.  I still remember this memory.  (101 words)

3. Listening to English songs

  It heals me.

  It makes me fun.

  It gives me courage.

  I remember that time to listen to the song.

  Every morning, I listen to the song.

  The third poem describes a moment when I’m listening to English songs while driving in the morning.  When I was a junior high school student, my English teacher tell us English songs in the class.  For example, The Beatles, One Direction, Taylor Swift, and so on.  I had never listened to English songs until then.  However, once I heard an English songs, I quickly became to like it.  Now I listen to English songs every day.  In particular, I like the rhythm of English songs.  I always get energy and healing from it.  In addition, I often learn vocabulary and pronunciation while I listen to English songs.  (107 words)

4. Studying English at high school

  “The world is wonderful!”

  My English teacher says it with her eyes shining.

  What is a foreign country like?

  What kind of people are there?

  What is the difference between Japan?

  I come up with a lot of questions in my mind.

  And…

  “I want to go to foreign countries!”

  My English teacher talked about her experience in other countries in her class at high school.  I had never been to another country at that time and I didn’t know other cultures.  This poem describes a moment when I wanted to go abroad, listening to her talk.  I heard that she is from International Christian University and she had lived in the dormitory with international students.  I learned that the rhythm of life and the ways of thinking are different depending on the country of origin, such as waking time and routine from her experiences.  I was very interested in other cultures.  (102 words)

5. Watching movies in English

  I watch a movie in my room.

  I listen to what they say in English.

  I watch what they say in Japanese.

  The language are different.

  The way of expression is a little different.

  But the impression is the same.

  The fifth poem describes a moment when I watch a movie in my room.  I think that watching movies in English is very useful to practice listening English.  In last year’s English class, I did my homework to watch movies in English as practice of listening.  In addition, I think that I can learn more to compare English with Japanese.  English expressions are a little different from Japanese expressions.  However, there is no change in being impressed.  I’m very interested in this point.  And I enjoy watching foreign movies because costumes and production designs are more luxurious than Japanese movies.  (100 words)

6. My host sisters

  Natahlia, a seven-year old girl

  Alexia, a five-year old girl

  Younger than me,

  Smaller than me,

  But they are my little English teachers

  Their soft and cute voice

  Their gold hair

  Their soft hands

  Their warm heart

  Always support my life here

  Before go to bed, we always say together

  “おやすみ”

  Maybe tomorrow will be a good day

  The six poem describes a moment when I had stayed at Australia for a month.  I had never been another country before, so I was worried about to be able to live there.  My host family has six members, father, mother, grandfather, two sisters, and brother.  They were very kind to me, but my host father and mother spoke English fast.  Therefore, it was difficult for me to listen to them.  And I’m not good at speaking English.  So I couldn’t tell them what I want to do.  However, I played with my host sisters after dinner every day.  My host sisters were still young and I could listen to them, so I could talk with them easily.  In addition, they were very cute and always speak to me.  They supported me there.  (133 words)

Explanation of theme

  I have wanted to go abroad for a long time.  However, I had never been to another country until February of this year.  So first, I chose five poems based on my experience of learning English in Japan.  For example, classes in junior high school and high school, English songs, and movies in English.  In addition, I have studied abroad in Australia for a month from February to March this year.  Therefore, I chose five more poems based on my experience of learning English in Australia.  For instance, episodes about my host family, and English classes.  As above, my poems are written based on my experience of before studying abroad and while studying abroad, and my theme is my own growth.  (121 words)

New four poems

7. Speaking test at junior high school

  There is no one in this classroom.

  I can’t hear anything in this classroom.

  Just ALT and I are in this classroom.

  This is the speaking test.

  However, I’m very excited.

  What will we talk about?

8. Watching movies in English

  I watch a movie in my room.

  I listen to what they say in English.

  I watch what they say in Japanese.

  The languages are different.

  The way of expression is a little different.

  But the impression is the same.

9. Talking with my host father

  “What did you do today?”

  This is the sign that conversation begins.

  What did I do today?

  What will I talk about?

  I ask myself.

  The hands of the clock are moving.

  He is waiting for my words with his smile.

  “OK!  Today, I ….”

  I begin to talk about what I did today.

10. Studying English at high school

  “The world is wonderful!”

  My English teacher says it with her eyes shining.

  What is a foreign country like?

  What kind of people are there?

  What is the difference between Japan?

  I come up with a lot of questions in my mind.

  And…

  “I want to go to foreign countries!”

New three poems

4. The first class at junior high school

  “Hello, everyone!”

  The first class begins.

  I’m sitting on the chair.

  My English teacher and ALT are standing.

  What am I going to study?

  Where is ALT from?

  I have some questions.

  And I also have hope.

  “I want to be like them!”

5. Listening to English songs

  It heals me.

  It makes me fun.

  It gives me courage.

  I remember that time to listen to the song.

  This is my morning routine.

6. English classes in Australia

  She comes into the classroom, showing her white teeth.

  And we narrow our eyes naturally.

  I’m looking forward to see her every day.

  “Good morning!”

  I hear her cheerful voice.

  “Good morning!”

  I greet her well.

Three poems based on the feedback

1. My host sisters

  Natahlia, a seven-year old girl

  Alexia, a five-year old girl

  Younger than me,

  Smaller than me,

  But they are my little English teachers

  Their soft and cute voice

  Their gold hair

  Their soft hands

  Their warm heart

  Always support my life here

  Before go to bed, we always say together

  “おやすみ”

  Maybe tomorrow will be a good day

【変更点】

・“Pretty voice call my name  Feel gold wind, feel soft hands, and feel warm heart”が何を表現しているのか分からない。→修正して、“Always support my life here”を追加した。

2. Making lamington

  “What should I do?”

  There is just a big sponge cake in front of me.

  And there is a riddle.

  I have never seen it.

  I have never eaten it.

  Of course, I have never made it.

  But I have the image of sweet, sweet taste.

【変更点】

・作る前にどう作ればいいのかわからなかったときの気持ち、迷っている様子などを入れるとよい。→4~6行目を追加した。

・時間を追っていて、感情表現があまり含まれていない。→切り取る場面を作る前に絞った。

3. Asking the way in Australia

  “Where am I?”

  I don’t know the way to go.

  A lot of people pass by me one after another.

  I can’t move from here.

  “Is there anyone who can tell me the way?”

  Then, one woman is passing in front of me.

  “This is a chance.”

  I try to ask her the way.

【変更点】

・その時何が見えたのか?気持ちをもっと伝えるように!→5行目と7行目に心の中の言葉を入れた。

Three Poems

1. My host sisters

Natahlia, seven-year old girl

Alexia, five-year old girl

Younger than me, smaller than me

But my little English teachers

Pretty voice call my name

Feel gold wind, feel soft hands, and feel warm heart

Before go to bed, we always say it together

“おやすみ”

Maybe tomorrow will be good day

2. Making lamington

“What should I do?”

There is just a big sponge cake in front of me.

And there is a riddle.

I solve the riddle with my friends.

First, I cut the sponge cake.

Second, the sponge cake in the chocolate mixture.

I feel a sweet smell gradually.

Finally, the sponge cake in the coconut.

It seems to have snowed.

3. Asking the way in Australia

I’m walking around Sydney with my friends.

But…I missed the way!

“Where am I?  I want to go to Luna Park.”

Then, I ask the way to woman.

She told me the way politely.

“Thank you so much!”

I want to be like her.

Freewriting of 10 memories of English language learning

1. English classes in the first grade at junior high school

  I was looking forward to take the first English class.  But I was warried about studying English because I had not learned English.  My English teacher’s pronunciation was very beautiful.  So I wanted to pronounce like my English teacher.  And ALT was kind and polite.  I like him very much.  I tried to study English hard to be able to talk with him.

2. Speaking test in the first grade at junior high school

  I talked with ALT and read textbook for speaking test.  Speaking test was public test, but I was very fun to talk with ALT.  In addition, ALT said to me, “Your pronunciation is so good!”  I was glad to hear that.  I remember this memory now.

3. Studying English at high school

  My English teacher talked about her experience in other countries in the class.  I had not been to other countries at that time and I didn’t know other cultures.  So I was excited to hear her talking.  And I could learn a lot of things. For example, Japanese people often indirectly express what we think. However, foreigners frankly express what they feel. I knew that foreigners are different from Japanese people for the first time.

4. Listening and singing English songs

  When I was a junior high school student, my English teacher tell me English songs in the class.  For example, The Beatles, One Direction, and Taylor Swift.  I like to sing songs, so I also like to sing English songs.  I learn vocabulary and pronunciation while I sing English songs.

5. Watching movies in English

  I think that watching movies in English is very useful to practice listening English.  In addition, I can learn more to compare English with Japanese.  English expressions are a little different from Japanese expressions.  I’m interested in this point.

6. Talking with my host family

  I was in Australia.  I stayed with my host family.  My host family members are my host father, mother, grandfather, two sisters, and brother.  They are very kind and friendly.  I was looking for Japanese restaurant near my host family’s house.  Then, my host father said to me, “I know very good Japanese restaurant.”  I said “Where are there Japanese restaurant?”  He told me his recommendation.

7. Playing with my host sisters

  I had two host sisters.  First, Natahlia is seven-year old girl.  Second, Alexia is five-year old girl.  They are always cheerful.  I read books, drew pictures, and dance with them after dinner every day.  I talked a lot with them during playing.  So I could practice to speak English.  I had a very good time.

8. Asking the way in Australia

  When I went to Sydney with my friends, I missed the way.  Then, I asked the way to woman.  I said to her, “I want to go to Luna Park.  Please tell me the way.”  She was very kind, so I could understand her explanation.  Finally, I could go to Luna Park.

9. Making lamington with my friends in Australia

  Lamington is famous and traditional sweet in Australia.  However, I didn’t know it.  Of course, I had never made lamington.  But I tried to make lamington with my friends.  I read the recipe.  It was difficult.  Finally, I could make lamington.  It tasted good, but I felt it was too sweet.

10. English classes in Australia

  I had two English teachers in Australia.  First, Neeka is from Pakistan.  Second, Sharn is from Australia.  They are very friendly, so I talked with them a lot.  I practiced to speak English through playing games in their class.  For example, I solved a riddle.  This activity was so fun.

A short list of 10 memories of English language learning

  1. English classes in the first grade at junior high school
  2. Speaking test in the first grade at junior high school
  3. Studying English at high school
  4. Listening and singing English songs
  5. Watching movies in English
  6. Talking with my host family
  7. Playing with my host sisters
  8. Asking the way in Australia
  9. Making lamington with my friends in Australia
  10. English classes in Australia

My thoughts of reading Chamcharatsri’s article

  In this article, author investigates the relationship between love as construct of emotion and writing in experience.  Students write poems in the L1 and L2 languages and then undergo interviews.  An interview is one way we can elicit feelings, thoughts and experiences.  I knew for the first time that it was not acceptable to express their feeling verbally in Thai society.  I was very surprised at this point.  And I learned that poetry writing is common for Thailand students.  The first student states that to express his feelings in Thai is easier than in English.  That’s because he can use a variety of words in the L1 language, he think he can express what he thought.  On the other hand, a student who is accustomed to using English feels that it is easier to write poems in English than in Thai.  As you can see, it is sometimes easier for students to write poems in the L1 language to express their feelings.  However, some students feel that L2 languages are easier to express their emotions.  This article doesn’t state that which language is suitable.  What is important is that writing emotions leads to the reflection of our experiences.  In addition, poetry writing is focused not on form or grammar, but on content or message of what we want to say.  It is not effective just to read or write poetry that already exists.  Therefore, creative writing has the advantage of being able to look more deeply into language learning experiences.