Speech and Skit Contest Registration Now Open!

Speech and Skit Contest Registration Now Open!

The 2018 Speech & Skit Contest Application is now open!

Important notices:

  • The contest will be on Friday, April 20th2018 at the Seattle Center Armory

o   There will be the Cherry Blossom Festival, but it will be scaled back. Most events will be in the Fisher Pavilion, so please be aware the contest will be in a separate building than the main events. This is all the information we have at this time.

  • Check-in will be at different times for speech & skits this year.

o   Students are welcome to attend all day, but will need to pay attention to the time in order to check in. (Skits will be perform in the morning, and speeches after lunch).

  • Levels 3 and 4 must submit a 1-2 sent summary in English about their speeches.

o   Students must still submit the draft of their speech in Japanese, but it can be incomplete and changed as long as it still follows the summary.

  • There have been updates to the Guidelines and Rules on the website, please read it over.
  • The application is due by emailto jsascwa@gmail.com on March 30th or by mail, postmarked on March 31st to Garfield High School,  Attn: Chizuru Imase 400 23rd Ave, Seattle, WA 98122

o   The drafts for level 3 and 4 are due April 8th sent to  jsascwa@gmail.com

Please see the website for details: https://jwspeechskit.wordpress.com


We thank you all for your interest and support of the contest! If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at Jessica@hyogobcc.org

4th Bellevue World TAIKO Festival with Miyake Taiko from Japan on March 3rd!

4th Bellevue World TAIKO Festival with Miyake Taiko from Japan on March 3rd!
Enjoy the “Matsuri (Festival)” with professional skills of Miyake Taiko, world renowned Taiko Group, and other performing groups!
Are you looking for the concert which will move your heart? 
DON!   Echoing sounds of Miyake Taiko will be coming to Seattle as their first appearance! 
Japan Creative Arts and The School of Taiko present the 4th Bellevue World Taiko Festival with the special guest group “Miyake Geinou Doushikai”.
“Miyake Geinou Doushikai” is a skilled performing arts group, known as the group which have even taught their “Miyake” art form to “KODO”; a world famous Taiko group. Miyake is recognized popular repertoire by its sounds, movements and Samurai spirits. This unique style of drumming is simple, yet powerful enough to move audiences. With a sophisticated stage performance, Miyake Taiko is a must-see.
The intense beats, breathtaking body movements, and their spirits will energize your soul.
Proceeds will go to providing Japanese culture and arts for local Elementary Schools in need through Taiko School Assemblies.
Furthermore, you will enjoy Japanese Matcha (Green Tea), beauty of Hina-Matsuri, Silent Auction for great art, and more in the lobby.

Saturday, March 3rd, 2018
Concert Schedule:
Matinee :  Open  1 pm     Performance   2 pm~
Evening :  Open  6 pm     Performance   7 pm ~
Bellevue Performing Arts Center @ Bellevue High School
10416 SE Wolverine Way, Bellevue, WA 98004  (map)
More information 

4th Bellevue World TAIKO Festival with Miyake TAIKO will be held on March 3, 2018!
PO Box 3311     Bellevue, WA 98009
Japan Creative Arts produce The School of TAIKO & CHIKIRI for providing Japanese Culture beyond the borders based in Seattle/Bellevue, WA US.
4th Bellevue World Taiko Festival D.jpg4th Bellevue World TAIKO Festival Event Info JP.pdf

Grants for Nationwide/Statewide/Regional-level Events and Projects

Dear Sensei-gata in the U.S.,


The Japan Foundation, Los Angeles is pleased to announce that our Fiscal Year 2018-19’s grant programs are NOW AVAILABLE on our website!


Grants for Nationwide/Statewide/Regional-level Events and Projects

  1. Japanese Language Learners Event Grant

Deadlines:  March 1 and September 1, 2018

(Contact/Inquiry: Mike Penny )


  1. Japanese-Language Education Project Grant

(Examples: conferences, seminars, workshops, teaching material development, research projects, etc.)

Deadline:  2 months before the project start date
(Contact/Inquiry: Mamiko Nakai)

Grants for Individual Japanese Language Programs

  1. Salary Assistance Grant for Japanese-Language Courses

Deadline:  April 10, 2018

(Contact/Inquiry: Mamiko Nakai)


  1. Japanese Teaching Material Purchase Grant

Deadlines:  March 15 and September 15, 2018

(Contact/Inquiry: Mike Penny)




The Japan Foundation, Los Angeles
5700 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 100, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Tel: 323-761-7510
URL: www.jflalc.org    FB: www.facebook.com/JFLALC

Title:  Job opening in beautiful Olympia, Washington

My name is Yuko Nelson and I’m a Japanese Teacher at Capital High School in Olympia, Washington. I’m retiring at the end of this year, and so we are looking for a Japanese Teacher to take my place. The position is currently .6 of Japanese, but if you are endorsed in another area, like French, possibly Spanish, or any other subject area, the job could be full-time.

Olympia, Wa is a wonderful, beautiful place to live and work. The school (Capital High School) is about 1,200 really great students. We are 90 minutes south of Seattle, near the mountains, rivers, hiking, shopping, restaurants, the ocean, and the state capital.
Please contact me at ynelson@osd.wednet.edu or my vice principal Michelle Anderson at manderson@osd.wednet.edu .

High School Immersion Camp Registration Open!

Dear WATJ Members,

明けましておめでとうございます。Greetings from the WATJ High School Immersion Camp committee!


The purpose of Immersion Camp is to strengthen students’ skill and confidence in the Japanese language, and share with them the culture of Japan in a setting outside of school. This is a unique opportunity, and last year the WATJ High School Immersion Camp reached 110 students!


The 2018 WATJ High School Immersion Camp is scheduled for Saturday, March 10th at Chief Sealth International High School from 9:00-2:00. We hope that you will consider bringing your students to spend the day with us.


We are offering culture classes in slang, shodo, sado, taiko, cooking, and more! Students will enjoy a Japanese lunch and participate in a new and improved stamp rally relay to earn prizes. In addition, campers will receive a specially designed camp t-shirt!


Each school is invited to bring up to 10 students to the WATJ High School Immersion Camp. While our guest teachers instruct classes, classroom teachers support students in their learning or assist in the logistics of camp. The cost of camp is $20 per student, and a limited number of $10 scholarships are available for students in need. There are no refunds except under extraordinary circumstances. There is no cost for teachers!


How do I register?

Step 1: Register your school at https://goo.gl/forms/ekdibz6vSzXyydjN2

Step 2: Show the attached PowerPoint to your students and distribute the attached Student Registration Forms

Step 3: Collect Student Registration Forms and Payment

Step 4: Enter Student Registration Information at https://goo.gl/forms/gt222LkQeqjeGdl63 by February 16, 2018

Step 5: Receive an email confirmation from the camp committee


Can I register MORE than 10 students?

Please register only 10 students. We may be able to accommodate more students after the deadline if spots are available. Contact Sarah Antoncich at smantoncich@seattleschools.org if you have questions or concerns.

What if a student becomes unable to come?

Unfortunately, there are no refunds. You may substitute another student at your discretion, but the original t-shirt size and class choices will stand.

Can I just come to help?

Of course! Immersion Camp only runs because of the generosity of our volunteers! If you or another Japanese speaker would like to volunteer, please contact Chizuru Imase at cimase@seattleschools.org.

How is a student’s need determined?

We leave that up to the teacher. Please use your best judgement as there are a limited number of scholarships available. Many schools determine need by a student’s qualification for the Free/Reduced Lunch program.

Can a student change classes?

Once the students have been assigned to a class, we will not change class schedules except under extraordinary circumstances. We work to balance classes so that culture class teachers can teach effectively, and some supplies or materials are limited.

What if a student needs to leave early or arrive late?

Please see your school’s field trip policy. Unfortunately we cannot prorate the camp cost.


Thank you for your time and interest! If you have any questions, please contact a WATJ High School Immersion Camp Committee member.


We hope to see you soon!

Sarah Antoncich        smantoncich@seattleschools.org

Gwen Johnston          mgjohnston@seattleschools.org

Joshua Hansell           jjhansell@seattleschools.org

25th annual WATJ Conference on Saturday, February 10th!

Dear WATJ Members:
You have only two days left to take advantage of the early bird registration discount for our 25th annual WATJ Conference on Saturday, February 10th!
Register online and pay via Brown Paper Tickets or directly via check.
Bring your used Japanese teaching materials to exchange at our second annual furuhon ichi materials swap! Textbooks, magazines, teaching resources, reading materials…all is welcome!
8:30-9:30: Registration and Social Networking
9:30: Greetings from Consul General Yamada
10:00-12:00: Keynote speech by Dr. Suwako Watanabe
12:00-1:00: Lunch and Furuhon Ichi
1:00-1:55: Workshop Session #1
2:10-3:05: Workshop Session #2
3:15-4:00: Closing
WHEN: Saturday, February 10th — social networking, keynote speech with Suwako Watanabe-sensei, and two afternoon workshop sessions
WHERE: Bothell High School
WHY: Learn about Foundations and Best Practices
KEYNOTE SPEECH: ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines
2018 conference registration is now available online!

Bellevue College Job Opening

Bellevue College is seeking a part-time instructor for Japanese language credit courses starting the 2018 Spring Quarter (first day of instruction is April 2, 2018). The courses are held at the Bellevue College Main Campus. The position may be renewable for the 2018 Summer Quarter and forward, though not guaranteed.


Teaching Assignment:

  • 100-level evening course starting Spring 2018
  • 200-level evening course starting Fall 2018
  • 100- and/or 200-level daytime courses starting Spring 2018
  • Evening courses are scheduled between 5:30 pm -7:40 pm, either on Monday/Wednesday or Tuesday/Thursday

Genki Textbook (Japan Times) is used for all courses


Minimum Requirements:

  • Master’s degree from an accredited institution in Teaching Japanese, Japanese linguistics, or a related field, OR a Bachelor’s degree with at least 2 years of teaching experience
  • Experience teaching Japanese as a foreign language – preferably at the college or university level
  • Experience working with diverse colleagues in a collaborative and inclusive environment
  • Effective oral and written communication skills in English and Japanese


Application Deadline: January 31, 2018


Send a letter and resume to:

Anne Matsumoto Stewart



Once the application material is reviewed, qualified applicants will be contacted for an interview and teaching demonstration in February.

WATJ Annual Conference

Register for the conference before January 26th to ensure your early bird conference fee!
WHEN: Saturday, February 10th — social networking, keynote speech with Suwako Watanabe-sensei, and two afternoon workshop sessions
WHERE: Bothell High School
WHY: Learn about Foundations and Best Practices
KEYNOTE SPEECH: ACTFL Proficiency Guidelines
2018 conference registration is now available online!
We are still looking for workshop proposals aligned with our theme of Foundations and Best Practices.

The Workshop on Japanese Writing Assessment.

The department of Asian Languages and Literature and the Japan Studies at the University of Washington are pleased to announce the workshop on Japanese Writing Assessment.


Time and Date: 12:00 PM to 4:30 PM on Saturday, February 24, 2018

Title: What is good writing in Japanese? Thinking through assessment practices

Speaker: Professor Mari Tanaka at Nagoya University of Foreign Studies

Location: Thomson Hall 317 at the University of Washington

-This workshop will be conducted in Japanese.

-There is no registration fee.

-Clock hours will be issued by the university.

-Seats are limited to 25 people and registration is required. Please register at:


Registration: https://jsis.washington.edu/japan/good-writing-workshop/


Good writingとは何か:評価を通して考える

Workshop: February 24, 2018 | 12:00 to 4:30 p.m. | THO 317

Good writingとは何でしょうか。ライティングやスピーキングのようなパフォーマンス評価に、これが絶対という評価点はありません。しかし、私たちは学習者が書いたものを評価しなければならないときが往々にしてあります。そのようなときに評価基準が必要です。


本ワークショップでは、「比較・意見」のessayを例に、「マルチプルトレイト評価基準」を使って評価することによって、日本語のgood writingとは何か考えてみます。

他の人と一緒に評価することによって、評価観(good writing観)が人によっていかに違うのかも分かっていただけるでしょう。それぞれの評価観は大切にするべきですが、評価を一致させなければならないときもあります。そのようなときに使える評価のフローチャートも、最後にご紹介したいと思います。

What is good writing in Japanese?: Thinking through assessment practices

What is good writing? Performance tests (whether speaking or writing) do not have a definite grading system. Even so, we often have to rate learners’ writing. In order to do that, we need rating scales.

Rating scales differ depending on the purpose of writing, or on the genres and rhetorical modes of writing. Even so, if you know a versatile rating scale for academic writing (essays), you can utilize this for diverse contexts just by adjusting it slightly.

In the workshop, we will assess comparison & contrast and opinion essays with a multiple-trait scoring scale, reconsidering what might be considered good writing in Japanese. Through the workshop you will have an opportunity to share views on good writing with colleagues, and compare and contrast perspectives with that of other attendees. Keeping our various perspectives in mind, it is sometimes necessary to find a common metric when it comes to grading. For this purpose, I will present a new scoring system using flowcharts.


Akiko Iwata


University of Washington

Dept. of Asian Languages & Literature

Box 353521, Seattle, WA 98195

(206) 543-6628


Japanese pedagogy workshop.pdf


Our second WATJ Benkyookai will be on Saturday, January 20th at Bellevue College in Building D-104. See you there at 10:00 am for a round table, free-form discussion. Our proposed starting topic is technology, but please bring your ideas to share and questions to discuss!