Weekly Logs: Jul.20-26, 2020

Photographs of This Week

July 20, Monday

I typed what was in the conversation textbook from the section 5 to 7 whole day. This was a preparation for the coming semester. I have to prepare as much as I can before the semester start on August 31st.

I opened my new blog in “goo” after the supper. That was not “google” but “goo”.

July 21, Tuesday

Getting on a local train around 8:30, I went to Niitsu for shopping in the morning market. The morning market in Niitsu is held only on the day with 1 and 6 for the first digit of the date. When I came back to my parents’ house, I uploaded photos that I took in the market, to my new blog. Uploading photographs onto wordpress is cumbersome, so I decided to upload photos onto the goo blog. After that, I finished typing sentences in section 8 of the conversation textbook. Section 1 through 8 will be taught in the first semester, so I had already had text data of what is written in the textbook.

July 22, Wednesday

I made “LQ Laoshi” mask in the morning. That was the second one. The mask was not against corona virus but for hiding my face. After that…I was just taking a rest on the bed for the rest of the day.

July 23, Thursday

I sent some documents of national health insurance and property taxes from a post. Other than that, I spent most of the time on the bed. I was so tired because of the hard work in the spring semester. I didn’t feel well.

July 24, Friday

I went DIY shop in the morning. I bought a saw that was for trimming stems of trees. Since I have worked hard for online teaching since March, actually the trees in the garden are now chaotic. I have to cut them short. But I didn’t have a good saw for cutting branches of the trees. After I came back from DIY shop, I recorded my bass playing. The music was “SOEUR MONIQUE” by F. Couperin. I went to haircut in the afternoon.

July 25, Saturday

It was just yesterday, but I have already lost my memory about yesterday. I uploaded “How to Make Origami Crane” on this wordpress blog with many photographs. But I decided not to upload many digital photos here. It is very difficult to insert photographs onto a post. I have to try several times until I successfully insert a photo.

July 26, Sunday

Yes, it is today. I got on a local train and visited my relative’s house in the morning. There are many blueberry trees in the garden. And. you know, it is July that is the season of blueberry. I thought I could make some blueberry jam in the afternoon. So I prepared glass bottles that were suitable to pour jam before I left home. Actually no one lives in that relative’s house. There are so many empty houses in Japan where the society got aging. When I got to the house, I saw there were no blueberry fruits on the trees, almost nothing. If the birds had eaten blueberry, there should have been white droppings on the ground. But I didn’t see any bird feces on the ground. I remembered that the same thing had happened last year. There was no blueberry fruit on the trees in the month of July. So my conclusion was that someone took blueberry without permission. I was disappointed by that, and just came back home by the earliest train.

In the afternoon, I went to a supermarket. After shopping, I dropped by a flower shop in order to buy some flowers to offer to my dad who passed in February. While a lady was cutting and binding some chrysanthemums, I found small sunflowers in the glass case. Then I thought I wanted to add just one sunflower to the flower bundles. Now it is the end of July, that means the season is summer, sunflower is the flower of the summer….. But I missed the chance to ask her to add sunflower. After all, my dad wasn’t a person who cared about such a little tiny thing (whether or not there is a flower of the season in the flower bundle). I thought it was okay. And I paid 1100 JPY (10USD), then left for home.

LQ Laoshi Tried Playing Fast, But…

LQ Laoshi with his Bacchus Electric Bass

“SOEUR MONIQUE” F. Couperin, played by LQ Laoshi 3.26MB, 3min16sec

I actually connected two takes at 2:02. I tried playing as fast as I can from the connected point, but I could not catch up the speed. I regret using a piano recording of speed of 54 that was too fast for my finger picking style.

Welcome to LQ Laoshi’s Blog on WordPress

Hi, this is a blog that is a record of my career as a Japanese teacher.

Please visit my photo gallery “LQ Laoshi’s Photo Gallery” (outside of wordpress)

I like playing music on my electric bass. Please visit “LQ Laoshi Plays Electric Bass.” and listen. The following is one of my bass playing.

J. S. Bach, Unaccompanied Cello Suite No.3, Prelude on Electric Bass (4.22MB)

Uncomfortable Writing Experience

I complained the poor operability of wordpress yesterday. I don’t know what is the benefit of blocks. They are just obstacles against smooth writing process. I want to write my sentences as if I wrote on the plain text. I think that it would be better to draft on WORD first and then copy-and-paste the draft on wordpress. Writing and editing on wordpress is cumbersome and time consuming. Probably this is not my idea but what the most wordpress blogger are doing.

Anyway today I am writing this on WORD first. I can also point out other problems. It is slow. When I push the “+write” button on upper right, it takes 20 seconds until it becomes ready to write.

My purpose here is to record my activities as a Japanese (language) teacher. So now I am thinking about making this blog “text-only” (, or mainly text only) and going to other blog service for uploading photographs because handling image (or media) files is also cumbersome here. I will make my mind for this issue in this summer vacation. The best thing is that wordpress could be more user friendly, but so far, I think it would be easier for me to hand-type HTML commands.

Today also, it was difficult to insert images from media library. Sometimes I can insert an image in the first trial, but most of the time I have to repeat try-and -error for just inserting an image between the blocks.

I can’t stand for this more.

Weekly Logs: Jul.13-19, 2020

July 13, Mon.

I had to grade students’ performance in the second semester. I taught 3 subjects for 4 classes. In total, I calculated 111 students’ scores. I had already graded the class 1837’s conversation course and the class 1939’s listening. I input those onto the university’s system on Monday, and I tried to calculate scores for composition classes for 56 students of the class 1836 and 1837. I was just doing that all day.

July 14, Tue.

Actually the deadline for reporting students’scores was on that day. But actually I couldn’t make it. I input scores temporarily onto web form, but did not fix them.

July 15th, Wed.

In the afternoon, I decided to repot the scores and submitted them. I cleaned the room after that. Since March, I had continued to work day and night for preparing online teaching with a lot of PPT slides. So the Japnese style 8-tatami room had become quite dirty. I just threw flush cards for verb conjugation because I didn’t think I would use them again.

July 16th, Thr.

I took a rest many times on the bed because I was tired for the hard work I did in the semester. I continued cleaning the room in the morning hours, and in the afternoon, since the sky was clear with sunshine; I took digital photos of pictures in the conversation textbook. So I had started preparing for the coming semester. I know that it would be better to use a scanner than use a digital camera for that purpose. But actually my scanner is 200 miles away, I mean, my scanner is in Kanto region. If I went there for scanning, thickets for high speed railway would cost much such that I could buy another scanner. And the second wave of corona virus infection is now hitting in Kanto region. So I don’t want to go there now.

July 17th, Fri. and 18th Sat.

I had just processed the image files that I took in the form of digital photos.

July 19th , Sun.

I finished the image processing in the morning. The number of pictures for one semester was about 280. Those were to be used on PPT slides. And then I started typing the Japanese sentences of the textbook so that I could use them also on PPT slides. These works should be done during summer vacation. Once the semester started, it would be disastrous for me to do such works as preparation for the class. In the afternoon, I went outside and paid money for the national pension. I forgot to pay for April and May because I was so concentrated on making online classes. It was about 300 USD, which was a cost of living in this country, JAPAN.

Took a Walk to the River, though Rainy Season is still going on

The spring semester was over. Summer break has started. But there is no time for me to take a rest. I have already started preparation for the next semester. Since the day before yesterday, I have been scanning the pictures on textbook so that I can use them on PPT slides. Since today is not rainy (though it’s dark), I took a walk in the afternoon. 

Bridge for Farmers’ Vehicles

Mountains whose heights were about 1000 meter were seen from the bridge.

View from the Bridge

A farmer and her husband were working to harvest onions.

Farmers are Working Hard on the Ground

Oh, by the way, this wordpress writing system is quite inconvenient. It is hard for me to operate. Now I regret starting writing this post. This is terrible.

Growing Rice in the Paddy Fields

I can see five peaks of Gozu Mountain. “Gozu” uses two Chinese Characters for “Five” and “Heads”.

Mountain Gozu behind the Paddy Fields

It is a kind of agony just to write sentences and insert images. I hope someone will change and enhance to make it easy to write and post a blog.

The board is saying “Let us make the river clean”, “You will be punished if throwing trashes and/or dirty matters in the river area”.

Unclear Board saying not to throw garbage

Flowers I saw on the way to the river

I am just wondering how other wordpress users feel about this very poor operability of writing system. I would like to say “This is a torture”.

Online Teaching for Class 1837 (Conversation) on July 3, 2020

Date: July 3rd on Friday, 2020 from 13:40 to 15:10 (14:40 – 16:10 in JST)

Course: Japanese Conversation 4

Used app: Streaming was used at the first, and then Video conference was used i n the second half of the class. Both are the functions of DingTalk. Dingtalk’s BBS is also used to show the students some images.

Numbers of Students:

 – Attendance check by the students’ self-claimed input of “Shusseki” onto BBS : 26

  – Attendance check at the end of the class by the names appearing on the streaming show windows: 21

Class Activities:

(1) Review of the last class by PPT slide show streaming

  – The listening material taken from section 12-1 of “Dekiru Nihongo” in which Park-san says that she doesn’t feel well to her friend Yamaguchi-san.

  – The students repeated some practices for several expressions included in the conversation like the particle “-mo” for emphasizing how much it is, another particle “-shika” for emphasizing how less it is, suggestion “-tara douka”, and doing something A without doing something B “-naide,”

(2) Learning the new part of the conversation between Park-san and Yamaguchi-san.

 – Using Dingtalk’s function of video conference, the class learned the new part of listening materials that follows what we had learned. It included “-trashii” and “-naide,”

Homework Assignment:

– No HA.

Issues and Problems:

 This was the last class in the second semester.

Online Teaching for Class 1837 (Composition) on July 3, 2020

Date: July 3rd on Friday, 2020 from 8:00 to 9:30 (9:00 – 10:30 in JST)

Course: Japanese Basic Composition 2

Used app: Streaming of Dingtalk to show PPT presentation.

Numbers of Students:

  – Self-claming attendance on BBS by inputting “Shusseki”: 25

  – Attendance check by the submission of 60-question quiz at the end of the class: 23 

Class Activities:

 – Almost identical to the composition class on Tuesday for the class 1836. What was learned during the first and the second semesters were reviewed in the form of quiz with each having four selections.

(1) Speech/writing style of Japanese

 Japanese speech/writing style varies from situation to situation. You use honorifics to elderlies and teachers, polite expressions in public,  and casual expressions to your friends. Foreign Japanese learners often speak and write Japanese with mixing those different speech style. Further more, writing Japanese has clear distinction between “desu-masu” style and “Da-dearu” style. “Desu-masu” is also used in spoken Japanese but “Da-dearu” is usually only for writing.         

(2) “Da-Dearu” writing style for composition.

 So the important thing for the students to learn is that they learn to use another type of Japanese language style that is different from what they usually learn in their textbook. This has been continuing to be a quite big issue in the composition classes. Many students were sticking to “Desu-masu” even if I told them to write in “Da-dearu”. It seems that changes in language style to adapt the situation are beyonf imagination to the students. In order to measure how well or bad he/she operates “Da-dearu” style writing, all the parameters were taken into the quiz;

Past/non-past for tense, Positive/negative, and four predicates: Noun, Na-adjective, I-adjective, and Verb predicate sentences. 

And several sentences ending with auxiliary verbs were added. Those were of conjugation type of I-adjectives (ex. -tai) or Na-adjective (ex. -youda)        

(3) Proper uses of conjunctive particles

It is so important to learn many conjunctive particles in order to write a complex sentences. But most students can use only “-kara” and “-te/de”. Several other conjunctive particles were examined if the students could choose them.   

(4) Sentence ending to describe changes in time sequence

Expressions “te-iru”, “te-kita”, and “te-iku+guess” were reviewed.



  – No HWA.

Issues and Problems:

 The first class that I had as a Japanese teacher in university was the one for this composition class for 1837 class. Through the first and second semeters, I have learned a lot of things. I know that I haven’t had enough experience to teach Japanese language yet.   

Online Teaching for Class 1837 (Conversation) on July 1, 2020

Date: July 1st on Wednesday, 2020 from 15:30 to 17:00 (16:30 – 18:00 in JST)

<This was a supplementary class that was done in irregular hours>

Course: Japanese Conversation 4

Used app: Video conference on DingTalk. 16 png images were uploaded on BBS in order for the students to look at. In the meantime the teacher was using power point only on teacher’s computer screen. The PPT slide was used to show the teacher some scripts and to make it easy to play mp3 audio for listening activity. 

Numbers of Students:

 – Attendance check at the beginning

   : 20 students input “Shusseki” on BBS as their self-claiming attendances.

   : 24 students were confirmed to be connected to the video conference.

 – Attendance check at the end

   : 17 students sent me four sentences that were a task given to them.

Class Activities:

(1) Listening and comprehension

  This class used a listening material from “Dekiru Nihongo”. This activity was continued from the Monday class. It was taken from the section 12-1 on the beginner-intermediate book (Yellow) of Dekiru Nihongo. The conversation between Park-san and Yamaguchi-san included the following expressions:

  -1: Use of particle “-mo” to emphasize the extent that is big, many, frequent, and so on

  -2:  Use of particle “-shika” that is always followed by negative expression behind: This was also emphasizing, however, “-shika——nai.” emphasizes the extent that is small, little, less frequent, and so on.  

  -3: Suggestion “-tara doudesuka”

  -4: Doing something A without doing something B, “V1-naide, V2 suru”

The listening materials were segmented for these four expressions. In each segment, I did my teaching as follows:

  <1> Asking a student to describe the situation looking at a picture shown on BBS.

  <2> Listening to audio by playing mp3

  <3> Asking a student several questions to confirm his/her understanding

  <4> Rote exercise of the new expression (one of four listed above)

  <5> Listening again with showing the script of the conversation.

(2) Writing four sentences using the expressions of the day

  The students were told to write four sentences using four expression learned today. They sent them to me at the end of the class. 

Homework Assignment:

– No HA.

Issues and Problems:

  Of course the improvement is necessary for the above procedure <1> through <5>. This was not the best for students’ learning.