Motivation and Student-centered
In Japanese, the word “to teach” is “Jugyo suru
(授業する),” which originates from a sentence in a classic Chinese essay, On Teachers: “A teacher is the one who can show the way, impart knowledge, and resolve confusion (師なる者は、道を伝へ、業を授け、惑ひを解く所以なり).” These are also the three pillars of my teaching philosophy. On top of these three pillars is a dome of “motivation,” which is marked as “student-centered” in my architecture of Japanese language teaching.
Show the way
I firmly believe that the primary mission of Japanese language teachers is to introduce possibilities in the language learning journey so that students can find something that constantly motivates them to learn Japanese in and beyond the classroom. Presenting various ways of learning allowed students to exercise their agency to actively learn what motivates them the most and embrace the possibilities of being proactive global citizens.
I believe the essential duty of a Japanese language teacher is to help students speak appropriately, express themselves confidently, and communicate effectively with other native or non-native Japanese speakers. To achieve this goal, besides basic language structure learning, designing engaging activities is an effective method to strengthen students’ instrumental motivation.
Swiping hesitations and reluctance helps students become relieved and motivated to learn. My identity as a non-native Japanese language teacher provides me with a unique and compelling perspective to help students address their concerns and build confidence in studying Japanese.