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Steve McCartyMar. 11, 2013 - 09:42AM JST
Enjoying Scrabble in Facebook. While I like the tactile sensation of the tiles, the board faces each player very clearly in the online version, which also has dictionary functions, etc. My Japan-born older son enjoyed trying the board version, and he in turn tried it with some neighborhood children, who also enjoyed it. Some games are so well designed, like Scrabble with all the variations limited only by vocabulary, that they stand the test of time.
Posted in: Which toy, board game or other playthings from your childhood have stood the test of time and are still popular with children today?
Steve McCartyMar. 05, 2013 - 09:40AM JST
While we were duped into being tough guys in American jungle schools, or fending off such rebels without a cause, Malala Yousafzai discovered that, mark my words, at least for young people, the greatest act of defiance in human society is (free and extensive) reading.
Posted in: Record 259 nominees for 2013 Nobel Peace Prize
Steve McCartyJan. 26, 2013 - 11:14AM JST
As a parent of haafu sons I could observe their surroundings growing up, and far from Tokyo it was close to paradise for them. They have always been accepted as Japanese because they have that common sense, plus alpha, minus KY. Whereas the principals in this article are on the outside looking in and, sadly in some ways, treated as outsiders. It is an improvement that Japanese are now asking what kind of haafu? and, in effect, admitting cultural diversity in their own ranks or country. I have heard the term 'new haafu,' which means something like boys will be girls (have a sense of humor and give them credit for being creative with language). In any event, some Japanese would really like to know what kind of haafu these guys are, because it's a novel idea to include them. Foreign-born people of Japanese ancestry are generally called Nikkeijin. The term haafu, with positive connotations and sometimes celebrity treatment, has tended to refer, not literally to mixed-race children, but to a certain experience of those raised in East-West bicultural families here. The notion of haafu thus tentatively opens the notion of Japaneseness to experimentation and expansion, possibly including an additional foreign flavor, the vanguard of nascent biculturalism and multiculturalism.
Posted in: What it means to be 'haafu' in Japan
Steve McCartyDec. 26, 2012 - 08:20AM JST
Sorry, I meant 'budgetary enemies' as in "left to their own devices, militaries everywhere are tempted to create 'budgetary enemies' in order to justify defence" budget increases (Lim, R., The Geopolitics of East Asia, p. 50) http://books.google.co.jp/books?isbn=0415360307. That is, the rival countries' military-related special interests both benefit from the hyped up threats. If huge countries are turned into pawns, what does that make us?
Posted in: Disputed islands once had strategic role
Steve McCartyDec. 26, 2012 - 07:52AM JST
Oh, and run "removing Taiwan from the first island chain" by me one more time. Territories with people, including the populations of Taiwan and Japan, treated like pawns in the latest Great Game. Our tax money chases the chimera of 'economic enemies' the militarists create, to our great shame.
Steve McCartyDec. 26, 2012 - 07:42AM JST
Armchair warriors, neocons, always trying to stir up trouble; leave it to the Naval War college to show some sense.
Steve McCartyDec. 08, 2012 - 09:56AM JST
Not that "it" - the idea of the prize, but the committee's political meddling has resulted in major fails each year since 2009. 2011 would've been good had they not included a politician up for reelection. Pulling the tiger's tail in 2010 and trying to push an inexperienced 'Commander-in-Chief' to the left only had the reverse effect of increasing political oppression. Some like Wangari Maathai really stand out, but there are so many potential candidates who are too busy working for peace to hype themselves to fame.
Posted in: Is Nobel Peace Prize losing some of its prestige?
Steve McCartyOct. 29, 2012 - 02:25PM JST
Minority Language at Home (ML@H) is logically better, since the aim is balanced input and interaction in both languages. But it may feel unnatural, for instance to Japanese parents who have complexes or misconceptions about languages. Moving abroad they may think "when in Rome," which would be a mistake. I've had the benefit of a few more years, where my sons as teenagers shunned me and English for a while to be popular or fit in, but they have grown out of that completely. Now they choose to speak to me only in English while being native speakers of Japanese. Child-raising is definitely a long-term proposition, so patience is called for, and may be rewarded when passive language is finally activated by necessity or choice. Perhaps most important is for kids to grow up loved, well-adjusted, and happy. A lively Q&A session including such concerns is recorded at the end of the following slidecast. Click in the circle to hear the recorded presentation synchronized with the slides, and just sit back for 42 minutes. Then it's possible to click ahead to the last slide and discussion that follows. Or click on the small triangles to just read the slides if you are in a hurry: http://www.slideshare.net/waoe/jalt-2012-bilingualism-4-lt-1
Posted in: 16 tips for raising a bilingual child in Japan
Steve McCartyOct. 29, 2012 - 11:35AM JST
It's not that related elements like biculturalism and the relative value of languages are being left out. Bilingualism is just a big field, and I first teach four levels of bilingualism to university students: individual (bilingual development, etc.), family (bilingual child-raising, etc.), societal (language policy, etc.), and the school level (bilingual education). For articles and more about this, check out the Bilingualism and Japanology Intersection at http://waoe.org/steve/epublist.html
Steve McCartyOct. 03, 2012 - 08:40AM JST
Japan is another whole story not addressed in the article, so I would like to add some links below. This article is easy to understand while covering many of the main issues, written in a journalistic style by a European academic. So it is attracting various comments. Academics are trained not to be defensive or partisan but to embrace any constructive criticisms that could lead to deeper understanding or solutions. The Internet took me out of splendid isolation in Shikoku, and I have been leading the World Association for Online Education http://waoe.org since 1998. A recent must-read is "What is the Academic Life? 1. General Answers to Essential Questions" in the Education India Journal. See Issue 3, pp. 6-12, at http://www.educationindiajournal.org. Relevant to this article and Japan: "Japanese Learning Styles in Cross-Cultural Online Education" http://www.sietar-europa.org/memberzone/magazine/issue003/issue3_theme04_mccarty.htm, "Cultural, Disciplinary and Temporal Contexts of e-Learning and English as a Foreign Language" http://elearnmag.acm.org/archive.cfm?aid=1070950 and, most recently, "Ubiquitous Computing and Online Collaboration for Open Education" http://waoe.org/steve/Malaysia_keynote.pdf, among other publications available at http://waoe.org/steve/epublist.html.
Posted in: Universities should embrace the move toward online learning
Steve McCartySep. 20, 2012 - 02:52PM JST
Its bilingual site for more information is http://marketingjp.com/
Posted in: Japan's first social media-focused contest kicks off
Steve McCartyAug. 17, 2012 - 12:02PM JST
Logged in with my Twitter account and saw the info from which this article by AFP was drawn. Biz Stone reminds us that they also started Blogger. Ev gave some hint about the shape of http://www.medium.com: "Collections give people context and structure to publish their own stories, photos, and ideas. By default, the highest-rated posts show up at the top." (Not too bright either to log into JT with my FB account, ever to go "where angels fear to tread"). Now we need a reason to view or start a "collection." This is a public service announcement.
Posted in: Twitter co-founders create online publishing site
Steve McCartyAug. 17, 2012 - 08:13AM JST
Went along with Ev before on free podcasting with Odeo, but then everything was deleted when they started Twitter. Brand loyalty should be mutual. Medium.com sounds interesting, but how will it differ from blogs and, by the same token, how will quality be improved after the quantity increases yet again with the ease of self-publishing? The key may be in just how users will be able to work with others. The Web has succeeded as an academic publishing medium to the extent that academic standards and ethics have been maintained, but there continue to be problems of duplication and changing URLs that break links and confuse original sources. Incidentally, the word "media" is the plural of "medium." The news media also stand on the rigor of their editing, but they serve different masters and end up inciting conflicts or dishing out celeb gossip because people supposedly want that (how did they know?). Still the point is that self-publishing equates with neither news nor academic publishing because of the lack of expert review. We shall see if anything significant comes of Medium.com besides teaching people the singular form of the word "media."
Steve McCartyAug. 13, 2012 - 09:01AM JST
When no one knew how vulnerable London might be, certain moronic remarks were made, which by all rights should now be eaten with a silver spoon. Congratulations to all our British friends!
Posted in: London - the Olympics as they should be
Steve McCartyJul. 24, 2012 - 02:17PM JST
A proven all-around pro and future hall of famer for two struggling minor leaguers? One slight detail not mentioned was the money NY paid, though Ichiro may have been gladly sold.
Posted in: Mariners trade Ichiro to Yankees
Steve McCartyJul. 24, 2012 - 01:58PM JST
Chill out: you can't pick and choose a pure part of the Olympics without the media frenzy; it's a whole package. There might have been a slip in discipline so he caught a cold; that's unfortunate. Genki Dean is a cool name; get over it. Bicultural isn't used in a technical sense but as an alternative to haafu, which is not necessary because there's nothing wrong with being called a half until you try to pluralize it. And big daddy, when your sons are raised in Japan, you're glad when they call you anything in English except Steve.
Posted in: Bicultural javelin thrower Genki Dean fielding a media frenzy
Steve McCartyJun. 19, 2012 - 09:19AM JST
Point well taken, but don't let the greedy in emerging markets off the hook.
Posted in: West must cut appetite for cars and TVs
Steve McCartyJun. 19, 2012 - 09:05AM JST
As one of the judges I can confirm that non-Japanese students were allowed and will be for the national competition, although it doesn't seem linked to the sponsors but rather to academic criteria. Follow all the details at the Marketing Competition Japan site on the open Web: http://marketingjp.com/
Posted in: Japan's first all-English social media-focused contest held
May. 24, 2013 - 03:06AM JST
I hope PM Cameron doesn't start calling this a simple case of workplace violence. If so,…
Posted in: Soldier's murder is attack on Britain, betrayal of Islam: Cameron
May. 24, 2013 - 02:48AM JST
Shaking babies to death, discarding in underground railway lockers, dumping in dustbins? Wow! This is shaking…
Posted in: Kumamoto baby hatch says it received 9 infants in fiscal 2012
Wong Cheuk Kwan
May. 24, 2013 - 02:43AM JST
The Yen is still too high at around 100. Depreciation of the Yen is necessary but…
Posted in: Shares close down more than 7%
May. 24, 2013 - 02:34AM JST
Well they gotta do something. Hopefully nothing terrible happens.
Posted in: Nuclear watchdog agrees Tsuruga nuclear plant sits atop active fault
May. 24, 2013 - 02:26AM JST
I speak as a non-Muslim who grew up in a community where Muslims make up a…