“Genki English” aims at more effective English teaching

By Edo Heinrich Sanchez

Richard Graham giving a lecture.

This week, I would like to introduce Richard Graham from “Genki English.”

We are only a couple of weeks away from the new year and we hope you can join us in the Speak Good English Movement Japan’s 2014 New Year Challenge: Teach a local elementary school student (or adult)  “How to Read in Six Weeks”.  As part of the I Love Okinawa Campaign® we not only need clean beaches but a generation of trans ocean communicators who can address this and other problems for a sustainable future into the 22nd Century.

Believe it or not, students in Japan are not taught how to read English but are expected to read from day one in JHS.  The alphabet will be reviewed the first week. After that, they will be under a barrage of flashcards using the look and say method.  By the time they break for summer, many students start using the “Katakana” phonetic script in their textbooks to get through the reading. Teachers do not see that as a problem and sometimes encourage it handing out worksheets with the “katakana” already above the English.  That is not good.  In my experience, very few students read with confidence or most importantly for their own pleasure.  The same goes for many JHS Certified English teachers.  They do not have time.  How can we help them and the students?

International understanding starts right at home. Students need to learn about Okinawan culture, traditions and history along with Japanese history before they can get a good understanding of what is happening in the world.

One person who has made a huge impact in making English fun has been Richard Graham, a leading authority on teaching in a fun, exciting and “genki” way.

The text below is from a self-introduction at a recent seminar

He has provided training sponsored by Ministries of Education, universities, boards of education and schools throughout the world as well as appearing on TV, TEDx and in numerous press articles.

His materials are now used in over 100 countries by millions of teachers & students both in the developed and developing worlds.

Take any problem in the world and it’s invariably caused (or made worse) by a lack of education. Genki English solves this by finding out what students want to say and then teaches them how to say it with energy, passion and confidence. It’s easy to teach, easy to learn and is very effective.

For his complete self introduction go to http://genkienglish.net/selfintro.htm

His talk will be uploaded soon at http://www.tedxryukyu.com

For information about the “Speak Good English Movement” and the I Love Okinawa® campaign contact edo@okinawaocean.org