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03

31

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報酬依存性 vs 新奇探究性

「人生相談」って読みものとしては面白いですよね。相談内容が、というより回答の巧みさに感心することが多いです。以前はオンラインで読める人生相談を読んでいました →人生案内(読売新聞)。 ちなみに今日3/31の相談内容は「30代後半の会社員男性。恋人ができたことが、今まで一度もありません。」 それに対する回答は「自己分析より基本マナーを見直してみて。女性が最終的に求めているのは、金でも地位でも容姿でもなく言葉。大切なことをきちんと言葉にする。誠心誠意、それこそ言霊込めて対峙する。特効薬はない。当たって砕けろ!」 というものでした。これを読んだ相談者がどう感じどう行動するか、我々読者は知る由もありません。今回は直球勝負・正統派の回答だと思うのですが、一見インパクトのないアドバイスはなかなか相手に聞き入れてもらえない傾向があると思います。英語学習の相談しかり。

回答者の中に精神科医の野村総一郎さんという方がいて、この人の回答はいつも気になってチェックしていました。精神科医が言いそうにないこと、すっと肩の力が抜けるようなことをおっしゃるのが魅力です。たまたま時間つぶしに買った雑誌にこの人生相談欄の回答者お二人の対談が掲載されおり、野村さんが人間の気質は3つに分類できると話していました。「新奇探究性」=新しもの好き・刺激が大好物、「損害回避性」=安定大好き・リスク嫌い、「報酬依存性」=人から認められたい・好かれたい。この中で悩みを抱えやすいのはどの気質の人だと思いますか?

「報酬依存性」が高い人だそうです。他人に評価されていないと安心できないから。これに「損害回避性」が加わると、いつも不安で神経質になる。でも「報酬依存性」が高い人は周囲に気配りできる人でもあり、それが低い人は自分勝手で偏屈ということかもしれない、と野村さんは付け加えています。諸刃の剣というわけです。自分の言動は基本的にこの「報酬依存性」に支配されていると分析します。いわゆる「おだてりゃ木に登る」・「褒められ育つ (そして打たれ弱い)」タイプです。若い頃はもっとこの傾向が強かったと思います。自己肯定感が低かったんでしょう。よって悩みも多かった(笑)。

いまの自分の中にぐんぐん育っているのは「新奇探究性」だと思います。年齢を重ねて「自分は自分以上にも自分以下にもなれない」と諦めがついてきたせいだと思うのですが、人にどう思われるかは以前ほど気にならなくなりました (個人的にお付き合いのある方、知らずにご迷惑かけてたらごめんなさい!)。人生の残り時間を考えると、何かに挑戦せずにあとで後悔するのはもったいなさすぎると、最近強く思い始めました。だって棺桶に足を入れる時、「あ~あれもこれもやればよかった。。」と思うのは想像するだけでも悲しい。東北関東大震災であれだけ大勢の方々が一瞬にして命を落とされた現実を見せつけられると、「生きてるだけで丸儲け。何でもやったれ!」と思わざるを得ません。もちろんその後始末は自分でつけなければいけませんが。

明日から4月。新年度の始まりです。出講する大学が1つ増え、職場環境が若干変わります。講師にとってはかなりdemandingなクラスを担当するのですが、「新奇探究性」をさらに育む機会として何でもやったります。気合いだ、気合い。

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03

30

コメント

Impulse Trip

“Impulse purchase”, to buy something driven by a sudden, random, and unexplainable urge, is characteristic behavior of women who regard shopping one of the most effective ways to relieve mental stress. The amount of money spent for impulse purchasing doesn’t matter. The act of identifying what looks adorable (and sometimes turns out to be a rubbish), spending certain amount of money with credit card in an attempt to numb a sense of guilty, and purchasing an item not out of necessity but just for the sake of calming down an unstoppable urge without weighing actual consequences is simply meaningful.

My four-day trip is the case, I'm guessing. I’m usually a person of contemplation, deliberation, and preparedness (who’s giggling here?!), but not this time. I made a decision within a second when the idea occurred to me. This is what I call "Impulse Trip". Now let me go on to additional justification. I’m also a person who needs certain time of being alone, or put it more nicely, solitariness. Since 3.11, the day when the earthquake shook the eastern part of Japan, I’ve been wanting to secure time to be totally on my own to reflect on who I am and pay my sincere respect for so many lost lives in the course of the disaster. I rushed to a travel agency, booked my flight and went on a short vacation.

Traveling alone is good in a sense that you will have more opportunities to talk with local people than traveling with somebody else. This may sound a little contradictory as a remark from a traveling-alone-advocate, but it’s just fun and refreshing to enjoy small talks with the people you met during the trip. Besides, a choice of whether you start conversations or simply exchange greetings is always in your hands. It turned out, as expected, I had a good time meeting nice people.

When I was using a computer available for free at the corner of a hotel lobby, a young black guy talked to me saying “Hi, you speak English. And you’re Japanese, right?” He, J.D., was a young American military personnel who evacuated from Japan a day before. The reason he talked to me was, in his account, that he was seeking suggestions on a relationship with his Japanese girlfriend who is eight years older than him (yeah, I’m Japanese and older!). He said that the relationship had just begun, but already started thinking about marrying her, or to be more precise, consequences of the marriage.

I was a bit amazed by the fact that a 24 year old American guy is being serious about marrying a girl who he’d been dating for only a couple of weeks (am I ignorant of men’s mindset or too old to be that romantic??). The night before he left Japan, she invited him to dinner at her home. It was his very first time to eat girlfriend’s homemade food and he seemed rather happy. Smart female readers will see some implications here, and of course, I told him so too. As we talked, however, I got to know that he was very mature for his age and would make a right decision by himself. I had a certain view on the situation deep down actually, but refrained from bringing it up because I was not in the position of opining about their relationship so bluntly.

All in all, I very much enjoyed the short getaway. The most fulfilling moment was when I was in sitting in a chair on a hotel room balcony viewing calm sea and a blue sky. Am I a successful, mature, and snobbish businesswoman? Far from it. But I realized that I’ve grown out of a traveler who seeks excitement, novelty, and surprises from a trip. Just reclining in a deck chair, reading whatever I like, writing whatever comes up to my mind, having afternoon beer (not “tea”, folks!), and hanging out completely on my own. One could ever expect more from a vacation? I don’t really think so.

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03

29

コメント

Learning Difficulties in L1 and L2

This is my posting on the discussion board of "Second Language Acquisition" course of TESOL program. It's fresh from the press, so to speak ;-) Hope you enjoy reading it.


It seems to me that we are more or less aware of differences in individual foreign language aptitude or existence thereof from our learning and teaching experiences. Obviously, there are people who are equipped with extraordinary so-called “talent” to learn a language realizing near-native ultimate attainment like Julie. USLA Chapter 7 attempts to present various approaches to delve into this issue, among which the following remark makes me reconsider what the issue of foreign language aptitude entails; language aptitude partially overlaps both with traditional intelligence and with early L1 ability, and language-related learning difficulties when learning to read in L1 resurface later on when learning L2.

USLA chapter 7-6 introduces “Linguistic Coding Differences Hypothesis” developed by Sparks and Ganschow (2006) which posits that people differ in ability to handle phonological-orthographical processing operations in their L1 as much as L2, meaning difficulties in L1 may become apparent in the early school years, and later in school or even in college, those who experienced language-based learning difficulties, whether diagnosed or undetected, will face difficulties in learning a foreign language. This hypothesis sounds very reasonable in a sense that people who do not manipulate their mother tongue fully will have hard time learning an additional language. The thing is, however, how to approach this type of learners as a language teacher.

I’m a type of teachers who believe in “Quantity overrides quality”, meaning that regardless of learners’ potentials, to be more specific, “aptitude” they will learn L2 to a certain degree if they try hard enough. This “positive” attitude, unfortunately, sometimes fails to be applied to certain learners. I remember one of the students who had to achieve more than 700 on TOEIC as a graduation requirement struggling with the TOEIC reading section. She was not a bad speaker of English, or rather, has a fairly fluent command of the language in oral discourse. When it comes to reading comprehension though, she demonstrated her ability so poorly that some of the teachers went so far as to suspect if she was dyslexia. She finally managed to achieve the requirement in the last minute due to her hard work and teachers’ attentive support, but the gap between her oral ability and reading comprehension ability was rather shocking to us all.

Some of the universities in Japan require that students earn certain scores on TOEIC or other English proficiency tests by the time of graduation or some other points. I’m concerned about how the students with language-based learning difficulties will overcome a situation in which they have to demonstrate their foreign language proficiency in specific tests under time constraint. As far as I know, there seems to be no convincing rationale or accounts for Japanese universities to set requirements based on certain English proficiency tests, mainly TOEIC, to begin with. I hope those who bear this kind of commitment will see their given circumstances as an opportunity to learn the language as seriously as possible, and hopefully there will be a remedial solution for non-achievers, such as certain score gains can be redeemed as fulfilled requirements.

03

29

コメント

"That may be the best compliment of my life."

Thoughts on compliments: How would you react when being offered nice compliments from others? Do you shy away from taking them literally, or smile gracefully and just say "Thank you"? Are you good at delivering compliments without being awkward? Have you ever hesitated to say nice things about somebody that you adore at heart and eventually given up doing so? Here is a set of compliments that I'd like to share with you. I was deeply touched by those words taken from a movie that I saw last night. Honestly, I wish I could say or write such sincere and heartfelt compliments to somebody I truly adore. Guess who says to who.

A: I've got a real great compliment and it's true.
B: I'm so afraid you're about to say something awful.
A: Don't be pessimistic. It's not your style. OK, here I go. Clearly, a mistake...I've got this, what, ailment? My doctor, a shrink that I used to go to all the time says in 50-60 percent of the cases a pill really helps. I hate pills. Very dangerous thing, pills. Hate, I'm using the word "hate" here about pills. Hate. My compliment is that night you came over and said that you would never...all right, well, you were there, you know what you said...Well, my compliment to you is the next morning I started taking the pills.
B: I didn't quite get how that's a compliment for me.
A: You make me wanna be a better man.


A: I've got a compliment for you.
B: You know what? Uhh...
A: Just let me, let me talk. Just...I might be the only person on the face of the earth that knows the greatest woman on earth. I might be the only one who appreciates how amazing you are in every single thing that you do, and how you are with Spencer, Spence. In every single thought that you have and how you say what you mean and how you almost always mean something, that's all about being straight and good. I think most people miss that about you. And I've watched wondering how they can watch you bring their food and clear their tables, and never get that they just met the greatest woman alive. And the fact that I get it makes me feel good...about me. Is that something that's bad for you to be around...for you?

In case that an opportune moment comes to me:
You make me wanna be a better person.
You make me wanna be a better teacher.
You make me wanna be a better educator.
You make me wanna be a better student.
You make me wanna be a better English speaker.
You make me wanna be a better English language learner.

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03

28

コメント

GET AWAY !

Here's a small quiz for you. Can you guess where I am now?

Clue 1: Outside Japan

Clue 2: Less than 6 hours from Japan

Clue 3: 1 hour-ahead-of-Japan timezone (Revised)

Clue 4: Consists of 4 letters


It's been more than two weeks since the earthquake. Having survived the initial impact though, I realize day by day that I've being affected by the aftermath which is more serious than I thought. Then suddenly, the idea occurred to me. "I need a getaway. I need to get refreshed somewhere outside Japan". I rushed to H.I.S. and booked a trip just five days ago.

Nothing special on my agenda; staying at a hotel room (nice and cozy), reading a book (finishing "Lobster" paperback), watching DVD (6-7 titles in my suitcase, such as "Beaches","West Wing Season 1", etc). You might think that I could do all the things in my home. Yeah, that's absolutely TRUE, but I need proof or evidence that I've had whatever vacation during my spring break. You get the picture ;-)

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Aya

Author:Aya
English learner

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上記広告は1ヶ月以上更新のないブログに表示されています。新しい記事を書くことで広告を消せます。