Thoughts, links & ideas from the 2008 National Teacher of the Year

Each time I've taken off in a plane since May (which is a lot), I've been writing in my journal, then adding these journal entries on this blog.

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(Note: the blue posted dates are actually the dates I wrote the journal entries, not when I posted them online.)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Mike Geisen Does Japan

San Francisco, CA


Konichiwa!  I’m about to hop over the other pond and land in the hamlet of Tokyo.  And while I’m understating things… I’ll be staying under a thatched roof and eating some rice and fish.


The Baba Foundation has hosted the National Teacher of the Year for many years now, and so I will have the unique opportunity to tour Japanese schools, a science museum, a high-energy particle accelerator (KEK), meet with the Vice Minister of Education, sightsee in Tokyo and Kyoto, drop in on the U.S. Ambassador, and even teach a couple of science classes to Japanese junior high students!  I wish I was feeling remotely prepared.


I’ve been cramming a bit after returning from Switzerland two days ago: memorizing a few phrases (“My futon is too short, may I please have a longer bed?” and so on,) reading up on Japanese culture and history, and listening to a book-on-tape to hone my diplomatic skills (Dave Barry Does Japan (which is actually a pretty good primer on touring in Japan.  Really.))


This should be an interesting week.  And that may be the biggest understatement yet.


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