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Tag: BLM

JP F20 INT/ADV: Naomi Osaka

Language Resident/Assistant Name:  

Kozue Matsumoto 

Day and Date:  

Wednesday September 16, 2020   

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):  

Intermediate / Advanced

Class theme/topics discussed:  

  • Naomi Osaka  

Goal of the class:  

  • What Naomi Osaka did, and how the story was told.  
  • Think about racism and BLM movement, think about them in Japanese context, and express ideas in Japanese 

How did you structure the class?  

  1. Good news? (5min) *We share positive stories at the beginning of each class.
  1. Ask about some Japanese news they know (5min)  
  1. Listen to the news (10 min)  
    2. Check the basics of the news (Who she is, what she did, her action of wearing masks etc.) 
  1. Breakout room (30 mim) 
    1. What do you think about her action of wearing masks during the US Open? 
    2. Lots of Japanese people believe that top athletes like her shouldn’t talk about any political or controversial issues. What do you think about it? 
    3. For so long time, for Japanese people, “Japanese people” mean people who look like Japanese, speak Japanese, live in japan for entire their life, and have both Japanese parents. Now things are changing. The Japanese society needs to adjust to multi-cultural, multi-racial, multi-everything reality. As a person who lives in USA, what would you like to suggest, advise, or teach Japanese people about living in a diverse community? 
  1. Main room (10 min) 
    1. Share ideas regarding the last question (4.c) 

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.) 

Class agreement, breakup rooms 

Zoom, Breakout room, chat section, news web site 

What worked well in this class? What did not work? 

  • Listening to Japanese news stories (created specifically for children and non-Japanese native people) seemed to be a little difficult, but they got a basics about the story (I believe the photos helped too.) 
  • Students had so much to say about this topic.  They had thoughts and ideas. They sometimes struggled to express it in Japanese. But I felt their willingness to challenge themselves and share their thoughts in Japanese. I think this is great. 
  • I had another news story to discuss as I thought that one topic wouldn’t cover the whole hour. I was wrong. Students had a lot to think and share.
  • I tried to reflect some reality of Japanese society. Also, I tried to have them think about it in relation to their reality in the USA. I received a lot of great points about question 4.c. One said that the USA has lots of issues itself and that it is difficult to provide any advice. This is understandable, too. 
  • I wasn’t sure how students would react to this topic, but they were very serious, and I can tell that this is not a new topic for them. They have been thinking about this issue for a while.  


  • Even before we start first discussion about Naomi Osaka, students had a lot of questions about Japanese society, such as how Japanese people understand things like BLM, whether there is racism in Japan and if so what kind, how Japanese people think about being different, whether and how people talk about politics, about the media’s political stance, how people learn about the USA. We had a good discussion. 

How could this class be improved/ modified? 

  • Providing a basic key terms in Japanese at the beginning of the class might have helped. But at the same time, if I did it, that’s going to frame how and what they are going to think. So probably, just start free flowing, and help them when they ask about certain words.  
  • I see that the advanced class can learn and discuss a lot about Japan’s social and political issues as well as cultural things. I appreciate their curiosity.  

F20 Online: BLM, Social Movements, Discrimination

Conversation Class Lesson Summary

Language Resident Name:

Katherine Pérez Gutiérrez

Maria Glukhova

Marie Segura

Day and Date:

Week 2, Fall 2020

Language and Level (intermediate or advanced class):


Class theme/topics discussed:

Black Lives Matter, Social Movements, Discrimination

Goal of the class:

To talk about racial/ethnic discrimination and about social movements that fight for people’s rights.

Useful recourses for LRs:

Books/articles & Film resources about BLM principles (different levels): 

How did you structure the class?

0. Greetings, announcements, general questions

  1. Conversation starters:

Racism 2020: What is the first situation/context/everyday situation that comes to your mind when thinking about racism?

What kinds of discrimination exist? (age, sex, nationality, etc.)

What do you know about the history of protest in the U.S? What about X language speaking countries?

What role has social media played on the display of news? Where have you been getting all protest related info from? Do you think it has made a difference on how people have found out what’s going on in the world?

“Generation” differences = how are different generations talking about/approaching current issues?

What makes someone worthy of getting a statue/a monument with their name? How important is it to think about the ideology that these monuments represent? Do they represent a person (wow, great guy!) or an ideology? What does removing a statue involve/represent/imply?

2. “Activities”

This topic has to do a lot with the language and the way we name things. For students, to learn what vocabulary is appropriate when we talk about race/ethnicity (more problematic for Russia, for example) might be helpful to read a short text/watch a video, with as many necessary words as possible.     

— Variant 1: 

Take a Facebook/IG post where a person (an activist, for example) examines racial problems/stereotypes/… in your target language. Cover the words that are terms that you want students to learn. Then write them down in a google doc so that students could translate them into English working together. Then ask the students to fill the gaps in the original text. Read the text together and discuss what message an author is trying to convey. 

— Variant 2:  [Mostly for Russia and other countries with ethnic discrimination

For some countries, ethnic discrimination is way more common than racial. The everyday discrimination against migrants from the countries to the South of Russia (Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, and others) is in almost every advertisement: “I will lease an apartment only to persons of Slavic appearance”, “We will only employ people of Slavic appearance”. So, you could show students these advertisements as an example of how racial and ethnic discrimination is pretty much everywhere.

— Variant 3: 

Give students a few short articles about specific issues (racism, discrimination, etc.). Students should do some research in pairs, read it together, and then present what they have learned about a problem. You may want to give an article with two different perspectives/times (have things changed?)/places. Instead of an article, you can give students an advertisement/flyer/ad from, for example, a different century, that wouldn’t be acceptable now and then discuss what why.

— Variant 4: 

Discuss Black Lives Matter’s 13 principles: Restorative Justice, empathy, loving engagement, diversity, globalism, queer affirming, trans-affirming, collective value, intergenerational, black families, black villages, unapologetically black, black women.  What do you think is the most problematic issue to address/deal with?

What technology, media or props did you use? (internet resources, playmobiles, handouts, etc.)


What worked well in this class? What did not work?

How could this class be improved/ modified?

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