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March 10, 2004

E-wave of the Future

Yesterday's Daily Yomiuri carried an article on NPOs trying to address the lack of direction in primary school English education. The Association for Planning Reforms in Education, known as "e-wave", is one such non-profit organization, which recently held its first examination of elementary school teaching skills. Based in Gifu Prefecture, where the take-up of primary school English is nearly 100%, e-wave is "planning to display the names of good teachers on our Web site. I hope our efforts will be recognized publicly," according to founder Norio Nakamura. Another similar organization featured is STETS Nagano, which holds certification tests twice a year as well as five seminars annually. According to organizer Tokio Watanabe, "English taught at primary schools should ... not make children dislike English. I think English-language teachers at primary schools are very important for this purpose." He also said, "In primary schools, I think it's enough if children understand English by listening."Daily Yomiuri (link will expire) | E-wave

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