A New Year question: What does “Do your best mean?”

With these simple understandings at the heart of any family or any curriculum we can create the kind of world that we want. It really is simple. Read More

Graduate level laughter

Knowing how to and feeling free to respond to people as individuals first, students of a particular field second, seems to me to be the essence of a holistic approach to education. Read More

“A lump of shit floating down the river”

This blog is gaining momentum, but at a pace that belies the flood of memories and creative ideas that the pleasure of self-expression in this medium has unleashed. Speaking of floods, I’ll talk in another post about how my 14-year-old hands steered the Hampton Junior Colts eight to what could have been a fatal disaster on… Read More

The kind of workplace we want, the kind of world we want…

Choosing to banish the excuses and prejudices that prevent us from achieving the kind of workplace that we want is the most powerful and empowering education that we can provide for students at this most dramatic time in human history. Read More

Reading and a feeling of guilt

George J.N. Whitfield, nicknamed “George” by all the boys at Hampton Grammar School, was a no-nonsense authoritarian educator — a real establishment character who inspired fear and respect.  I have a lot of memories of him, but I don’t remember him ever saying a word to me personally in the whole of the time I was… Read More

Wh- words for expressing emotion

Looking carefully at language used by relatively advanced or even advanced learners of English, often through study of a learner corpus, can suggest ways of ordering instruction in early stages that can help to avoid later fossilization of inappropriate usage. This post offers an example that illustrates this point. Read More

The good-hearted majority

I stumbled across an email I wrote to a friend in Oxford following the big earthquake of 2011. She, like many other friends overseas, was anxious to know how things were for us in Tokyo. Read More

Children of War and Peace

There are many of us who, with fathers and grandfathers who fought in the war, share a sense of mission to ensure that peace prevails over the anger that leads to war. Many of us also feel that Japan, with its unique history of war, natural disaster and more recently nuclear contamination, has the potential to be a leading voice for peace in the world. Read More