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September 01, 2005

A JET Program Pioneer

Tuesday's Daily Yomiuri ran an article on Kuniyoshi Shibahara and his role in bringing native-speaking ALTs to Japan. Shibahara has a 42-year career in teaching English and working with Boards of Education and was involved in the JET Program from the beginning, when he was a teacher at the influential Urawa High School in Saitama Prefecture. He believes the program has had a great influence on English teaching in Japan and on the growth in international understanding, even in rural areas. He sees the the next step to be getting away from "passive English" and moving towards a "hasshin" (outgoing) style, in which ALTs will play an important role in helping students speak out and express their own opinions. Shibahara is also a supporter of introducing English as early as possible into the elementary school curriculum.
ALTs help get rid of passive English (link will expire)
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