On our second Monday in Sapporo, we were back in classes. My language class had gone from 2 to 3 students. Yeah! And there was yet another cultural activity that afternoon. We were going to be making soba. Soba is a type of Japanese thin noodle made from buckwheat. Buckwheat is primarily harvested in Hokkaido. So there’s no fresher soba than in Hokkaido.
However, first things first. We were hungry. So after class and before the cultural activity, we had to grab lunch on our own. A few of us from the school were pretty hungry and had a hankering for ramen, the other very famous Japanese noodle (although if you ask the Japanese, ramen is a Chinese noodle).
ASL, or American Sign Language is the sign language commonly used in Vancouver and across most of North America (the notable exception would be Quebec where they use Langue Signe du Quebec). Because of my line of work with the Deaf community, I was required to learn sign language. My first job in Toronto actually held ASL classes onsite. So I was lucky enough to … Continue reading Musings of a Multilingual 5 | Learning ASL
Onto my fourth language – Mandarin. Mandarin is the dominant dialect of Chinese. It is referred to as the common language in Chinese. However, I grew up with Cantonese in my home. So you’d think learning one Chinese dialect when you know another would be easy. Not for me. I didn’t really learn Mandarin until I had finished my university degree and went overseas to … Continue reading Musings of a Multilingual 4 | Learning Mandarin
Growing up in Canada, there are two official languages – English and French. Growing up in English Canada, you almost always exclusively use English and French is just a language that you find on your cereal box or bag of potato chips and on road signs in national parks. I went to an elementary school that did not have a single French class. That’s really … Continue reading Musings of a Multilingual – 3 | Learning French
Parents, teachers mobilize to protest against possible school closures — Vancouver Sun. How on earth did three schools all within a few blocks of each other land on the same chopping block? Sir Guy Carleton Elementary, Collingwood Neighbourhood School, and Graham Bruce Elementary are all in the Collingwood neighbourhood in East Vancouver. Carleton is home to one of the oldest surviving schoolhouses in the city. … Continue reading Closing 3 schools in one neighbourhood can’t be a good thing
Where Have All the Children Gone? | BTAworks. I think this is a great piece of research by BTAworks, Bing Thom Architect’s urban planning and research arm. I read about this in the paper the other day, but newspapers never reference their work :S . Not to worry. Gordon Price posted a link on his Price Tags blog. Thanks, Gordon. I’m a big fan of … Continue reading Where Have All the Children Gone? | BTAworks
After reading about brain drain and kindergarten in Canada, it got me thinking about preschool in Hong Kong. It’s a very different experience than preschool here in Canada. I grew up in Canada, so I don’t have any first-hand experience with preschool in Hong Kong. However, I have heard stories from others about the experience and I base this post on what they’ve told me. … Continue reading Preschool in Hong Kong
The brain drain on the economy may be child’s play – Vancouver Sun, Sept 16, 2009. For those who work with preschool children or those who have studied early childhood development, this article is not totally surprising. The first 5 years of life are a huge factor in the development of a person’s behaviour and abilities. According to the HELP study, which tracked 140,000 students … Continue reading ‘Brain drain’ and Kindergarten