12/9/2011 ILC 2nd year (5I) Australia Personal Experience Speeches
In Term Two of the second year in the ILC, all ILC students go to Gold Coast, Australia, where they will stay with a host-family and spend six weeks attending classes at our sister-school, Trinity Lutheran College. When they return, the students must think deeply about the time that they spent in Australia by writing an essay about one cultural difference and giving a speech about an experience that they had in Australia.
The speech is given as their oral final exam for Term Two. This is an interesting story about something that happened to them that they remember vividly. The students this year gave vivid speeches about their adventures in Australia, often using original props, body langauge, and voice changes. These were amusing to their audience and teachers.
Although the speeches tend to be entertaining, they are also a chance for the students to look back on Australia and share an episode in their stay with the rest of the class and the teachers. Students can remember and reflect on all that they have learned in their Australian Experience.
10/5/2011 ILC 3rd year (6I) Research Papers
On September 30, the 6I International Leadership Course class finished their Research Papers. The Research Paper is one of the major projects of the ILC. It is the longest project the students do in the course, taking ten months to complete. They are done at the same level as those done by high school students in the United States.
The Research Paper is a culmination of several skills the students have learned in the ILC: paragraph writing, essay writing, research, analyzing sources, advanced word processing, advanced reading comprehension, paraphrasing, summarizing, and a great deal of grammar. These skills are taught from the first year of the course and are built upon carefully throughout the three years of the course.
The students begin the Research Paper by choosing a topic. The topic should be about something the student is very interested in, and it must be approved by the ILC teachers. The students then spend several months gathering sources. At least 50% of these sources are English sources. They read each source, take notes on it, then rewrite and summarize the information they gather. The students must use three books (one of which must be in English), two encyclopedias, two reference books, two magazine articles, and two newspaper articles. They must also interview an expert on their topic. Most students use several other sources as needed.
Students then begin planning and writing their Research Papers. In the first term of their senior year, in May, they must use the information they have gathered to make an outline of their planned paper. In June, they must handwrite their first draft of the paper, which the ILC teachers check. ILC teachers mark mistakes and point out writing and logic problems; however, no corrections are done by the teacher. Mistakes are only marked. The first draft must then be rewritten and typed.
The students work on this over the summer, and the second drafts of the paper are collected by ILC teachers in the beginning of September and thoroughly checked again. During September, students must rewrite their Research Papers and their final drafts are due at the end of September. Following this, in November of the second term of their senior year, students give a short presentation on their Research Paper to the rest of the class, sharing what they learned about the topic.
By writing the Research Paper, ILC students learn a number of important things. Each student has spent six months researching their topic and has become an expert on his or her topic. The students also learn how to do research, how to plan and write advanced academic English papers, how to use citations and sources, how to interview experts, and how to format a formal paper. They review all the English grammar they have ever studied, review most of the vocabulary they have studied, and develop their translation skill to a very high level. One final benefit is that they become good at planning and using their time wisely.
Students gain an high level of English skill through doing the Research Papers. They read advanced academic books, magazines, and newspapers. These are the same types of reading materials that are commonly used on university entrance examinations. They must not only read these, but they must summarize them and use them in their paper, so their reading ability increases greatly through doing the Research Papers. Students also must actively use the large amounts of grammar they have learned in the ILC in a useful and, most importantly, realistic way. They write sentences in complex grammar, so by doing the Research Paper, their grammar skills increase. Finally, by writing an advanced academic research paper, using logical paragraphs and logical essay structure, they become much better at understanding and analyzing advanced written English. All of these skills immensely benefit ILC students when they take their university entrance examinations.
9/20/2011 ILC 2nd year (5I) Intensive English Camp in Mizunami, Gifu
The ILC second year class went to Mizunami, Gifu Prefecture for four nights and five days to prepare for their upcoming trip to Australia. During the camp, they improve their English speaking and listening skills by only speaking English between 8:30 am and 9:15 pm.
The students learn Australian and Japanese geography, Australian lifestyles, and customs. A large part of the camp curriculum consists of logic lessons and getting-along-while-overseas lessons.
The students make three speeches during the camp. The first is about the gift that they are going to give their host-family, describing the gift in detail. The second is a group presentation in which they teach the rest of the class about the geography of one state in Australia. The third is a mini-debate, in which students make groups and have a short formal debate with their classmates. Finally, the end of camp is marked by a two-hour test followed by a small party.
Through the camp, the students prepare themselves by becoming used to speaking constantly in English. They also learn a great deal about Australia. Finally, because of the intensive curriculum, the students must help each other to succeed. This brings them together closely as one group. For more detail, please see the Intensive English Camp page.