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2007 April 23 Monday.

Back to school. 

The English Circle at the Kagura Kominkan was very enjoyable as usual.   

Next Monday we won't have a class because it is a National Holiday which as of this year, will be called 昭和の日. 

It used to be called みどりの日, but as of this year, May 4 has become the new みどりの日, instead of just a plain old vanilla packaged 休日.   

The other two holidays remain the same, even in name.   

Is that a good idea?   

Yeah, I think so. 

Presentation is everything.   

Especially in the Same Game, Different Name category. 

Go Fish.   

As I have mentioned once before in this blog, one of the newer members of this group has a very good sense of humor and likes to play around with words. 

Just like me. 

Other members talked about various things, including a trip to Tokyo and a trip to Izu.   

This timely and active sharing of real time information, which is the STUFF of our daily lives, is the essence of communication and indeed, life itself.   

What could be better than experiencing the moment, or reliving that moment,  again and again and again,....   by simply remembering it, in great detail.   

At 15:00 I had a class with the very nice lady who comes to my classroom almost every week at this time.   

As I have mentioned before, she is translating a children's book called スーホの白い馬 from Japanese into English.   

Today, she brought with her about 5 or 6 pages of what she had translated at home on her own time, and I took a look at it.   

I only needed to make a few small corrections in her translation to make it flow more smoothly.   

Other than that, it was a very readable English version of this children's story.   

After that, we still had about 20 minutes or so left before the start of my next lesson at 16:00, so she taught me a new Hebrew song which I quickly learned how to play on my guitar. 

Not only did she play her recorder (short vertical flute) along with me, but she also sang the song in Hebrew, Italian and Japanese as well.   

A very enjoyable experience for me, and also for her.    

Between the hours of 18:00 and 19:00 I didn't have a class, so I sat down to practice reading and writing Korean some more.   

About 3 years ago, when I first started from ground zero with this language, I bought some textbooks with audio CDs, and also a software package called Korean Writer V5 which can be used together with Microsoft WORD, to create good looking Korean Language documents.   

One of the textbooks which came with 6 audio CDs was a rather small pocket sized version of a book, and it was a bit difficult for me to easily see the writing in it.   

Therefore, I used Korean Writer and Microsoft WORD to create my own A4 sized pages with big letters that are really easy to see, and I even laminated them two sheets back to back per page, so that I could use them for a long time and not damage or dirty the printed sheets. 

Because I have been listening to the first half of the first CD over and over again for almost 3 years, I know the sounds of the words and expressions by heart.   

Today while I was sitting at my lesson table and practicing the writing of those same expressions, I noticed something strange. 

Two of the expressions had a written mistake in them that I had never noticed before.   

For details, see the graphic above/left.   

As I was looking at the laminated print I thought to myself;  "This doesn't look right. 

The pronunciation does not at all match the spoken word."   

I went back and checked the original textbook, and sure enough, I had made a mistake when I produced the computer generated printout.   

The only reason I am writing about this, is because it shows that I have made a major leap in progress towards my study of Hangul.   

I actually knew for a fact that something was wrong, even before I confirmed it by looking at the original textbook.   

I also see this exact same phenomena occurring among my students as they progress with their study of written English.   

They themselves realize that what they have written is not quite right and they pause to think about it. 

That's when I jump in with the correct spelling of the word or phrase.   

In the terms of a computer system, you might call something like this  "automatic error detection".   

In human beings you can call it "progress in learning."   

When a person, any person gets to this very basic but very important level during their study of a foreign language, any foreign language, it makes that student feel very good inside, and motivates them to try even harder in the future.   

That is a very good thing, any way you look at it.

********************************

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Korean Writer V6 Software Korean Writer V6

販売元:高電社
発売日:2005/07/08
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