The Teaching Skills Development Seminar (TSDS) is an annual gathering of ALTs, JTEs, and teaching consultants in Toyama hosted by the Council of Local Authorities for International Relations (CLAIR), and the Toyama Prefectural Board of Education. It serves as a platform for sharing best teaching practices and cultural exchange methods among English educators in Toyama. Workshops are led by the ALTs for their co-ALTs, incoming ALTs, and for JTEs.
The topics for these workshops were, but not limited to, classroom management, motivation techinques, cross-cultural activities, the Japanese language, cultural awareness, adapting to various learning styles, and much more!
Thank you everyone for your hard work and creativity in making TSDS an amazing experience for your fellow English teachers!
As 2020 and 2021 JETs had to undergo 14 days of quarantine due to the pandemic, various activities and materials were prepared by Toyama JETs to help welcome the new members of the community. This year’s orientation was conducted in 3 phases to accommodate the intermittent arrival schedule of new JETs in Toyama.
Phase 1: Welcome Letters and Videos
Sending virtual welcome letters has been a tradition in the Toyama JET community. This has been one of the warm welcome gestures being done by JETs to pay it forward to the community. In addition to that, this year’s orientation leaders also prepared videos that show and detail life as a JET in Toyama both in and out of the workplace. Letters and videos were sent to the new JETs to share a glimpse of life in their new home, Toyama.
Phase 2: Virtual Meet-and-Greet
Online meetings during quarantine time were also conducted each time a new batch of JETs arrived in Japan. The objective of the meeting is to check-in on the new arrivals and introduce them to the Toyama support team composed of regional representatives and JET advisors. The new JETs also had the chance to talk with their senior ALTs and ask for tips on what to do to settle in easily when they arrive in Toyama.
Phase 3: Prefectural and Regional Orientation
On November 17, 2021, the prefectural orientation was held. Seminars covering the ALT contract, team-teaching life, and work culture in Japan were facilitated by the JET advisors and senior ALTs.
To introduce ALTs to their local areas, on November 18, regional orientations were also held through breakout sessions with their respective regions – Niikawa, Toyama, Takaoka, and Tonami. The aim of this seminar is for senior ALTs to share about life in the region covering topics such as recommended spots and places, annual events, and safety measures among others.
The orientation for this year was definitely different from how it is usually done, and thanks to community effort, we were finally able to do not only virtual but also in-person activities to welcome the new JETs in Toyama. 皆さんお疲れ様でした！*
*Minasan otsukaresamadeshita (Thank you for your hard work, everyone!)
After months of planning, weeks of designing and hundreds of hours reformatting, myself and Martyn Bissett, our trusty webmaster, are thrilled to finally unveil the new Toyama JETs website.
This website is more user-friendly, better organised and easier to navigate, and will hopefully aid you during your tenure here in Toyama while you are on the JET Programme.
The site is far from being completed. It is a long and meticulous process and will rely on the talents, creativity and expertise of each and every one of you. Any assistance, advice or helpful critiques are gladly welcomed. This site expected to be completed some time before the new JETs arrive in Toyama in July, so please be patient with us as we work on the final touches. (The information on the old website will be available until the end of July for those wishing to access some of its contents.)
We have introduced some new additions to the site, which we intend to further explore in the future, such a Toyama JETs YouTube channel, and a Toyama JETs Alumni section where we will get insight into the lives of some of Toyama’s former JETs.
This website is a reflection of all of us, a community of ALTs and CIRs who come from countries near and far, who have all united to call this small, humble prefecture, Toyama, home.
All the best. (^o^)/
Your Prefectural Advisor