As an ALT, you've been hired to internationalize your little corner of Japan speaking in English (or whatever your language is) to every Japanese person you meet...right? While you could easily argue that the best way for your students and workmates to learn English is if you only spoke in English with them, the reality of the situation is, they are most likely expecting you to learn Japanese. In fact, studying Japanese will probably count as work in the eyes of your colleagues. If you're at school reading Japanese manga, and you get so caught up in the story that you don't leave until an hour past clock-out time, your vice-principal might compliment you on how hard-working you are (I am not making this up).
The point is, it has probably not been emphasized enough how important it is that you try to learn Japanese. Every inch of progress you make will help you gain the respect of your colleagues and make your school proud that you are their ALT. And if you still need to justify your existence as an English teacher, your progress in Japanese just might make them realize that learning a second language is not impossible.
|For New Jets||
The Hiring Process ・ Buying From Your Predecessor ・ Japanese Customs ・ Bringing Medicine To Japan ・ Presents For Coworkers ・ Tokyo to Hyogo ・ Residence Card ・ Changes to the Alien Registration System, July 2012 ・ First Few Days ・ Pension Book ・ Settling In At Home ・ Letter of Appointment ・ Personal Seal
|Life In Hyogo|
|Language and Culture|
|Computers and Phones|