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Thanks for all your comments. As I thought, this was an easy topic for most of you to comment on! I was thinking the other day that if I added up the cost of all the things I have bought in my life that I didn’t need or never really used, it would be a scary amount of money. I guess that is one of the worst things about our modern society – wastefulness.

Anyway, here is some feedback on your comments:

This is my first time to comment your blog.
This is my first comment on your blog. (A-Z: first time)

I go to a bookstore 3 or 4 times in a week.
I go to bookstores 3 or 4 times a week. (A-Z: times)

I never mind to throw old books away or sell them to secondhand bookstores like BOOK OFF.
I never hesitate to …

For example, the other day I was thinkng about if I had a bit elegant pumps for my son’s kindergarten entrance ceremony in my shoes collection.
For example, the other day I was wondering whether I had any smart pumps in my shoe collection that I could wear for my son’s kindergarten entrance ceremony.

… but unfortunately they are far away from my taste(this is a secret!).
… but unfortunately, they are not my taste at all. (This is a secret!)

I love buying things during the bargain season!
I love buying things during the sale season! (A-Z: bargain)

Same here!
This is a nice expression. Learn it if you don’t know it.

This has nothing to do with the topic, but I found that it’s almost one year since I joined this blog.
Congratulations on your anniversary, and thanks for all your contributions.

I’m always interested in selling unworn clothes, but I’ve never done that.
I’ve always been interested in selling unworn clothes, but I’ve never tried it.

He doesn’t dirt his clothes as much as other boys do.
He doesn’t mess up his clothes as much as other boys do.
OR
He doesn’t get his clothes as dirty as other boys do.

I’m interested in your “unread books” rather than unworn cloths!
I’m more interested in your unread books than your unworn clothes!

As you say, trying to get money from what you don’t need is often troublesome.
“Troublesome” is not wrong, but it’s not a common word. I’d suggest “… is more trouble than it’s worth.”

I’ve met the same case, too.
The same thing happened to me.

I wonder how many comments have you wrote so far?
I wonder how many comments you have written so far.

I only throw old clothes away when they are worn out.
Nice sentence.

I also didn’t go
I didn’t go either (A-Z: negative sentence word order)

> I don’t think that is nothing new
I don’t think that is SOMETHING new
“I don’t think that is anything new” would be more natural.

If so, I often feel the same, too, because young girls seem to be much bolder or more active than boys.
I agree! I hate teaching classes that are all or mostly boys. Generally speaking, girls are much easier to teach.

By the way, I heard that “the April-starting society” is very unique. 
As you probably know, Todai are thinking of changing to the Western system. That might be a good topic for another week.

I don’t purchase clothes on impulse to cheer me up when I’m down in the month.
I guess this is a typo, but I wouldn’t use “down in the mouth” anyway. It’s more natural to say, “when I’m feeling down.”

By the way, this is nothing to do with this week’s topic, but I wonder if there are some people who find difficult to pronounce a word “clothes.”
Hi Anne, nice to see your comment again. I hope you are feeling better. Very few Japanese people can pronounce the word “clothes” correctly. I usually advise people to say “close” with the verb pronunciation. It’s almost the same, and it’s much better than what most Japanese people say when they try to pronounce “clothes.”

I think female and male student’s English abilities are not so different,
I think it is generally accepted that women tend to be better at language learning than men. They also tend to be better at expressing themselves in their own language. I read an interesting article about this once. It said something like, “when you watch children playing, you will notice how active the boys are and how the girls tend to sit around doing nothing. But the girls are not doing nothing – they are talking.” The point of the article was that girls learn how to express themselves and communicate with others from a very young age, whereas boys are so focussed on competing and showing off that they don’t have time to learn these skills.

I think that makes them more difficult than girls to try other things
I think it makes it more difficult for them to try other things.

it’s a shame because I seldom wear them.
“Seldom” is not wrong, but it sounds a bit unnatural. We would normally say “hardly ever.”

That’s it for today. Have a great weekend, and let me know if you have any questions about the feedback.

30 Comments

  1. Mika on Friday February 8th, 2013 at 07:26 PM

    Hi David,

    Thank you for your nice feedback.
    I’m very happy to know “hardly ever”.

    My husband is hardly ever home even Sundays and national holidays, either.

    Have a great weekend.



  2. YU on Friday February 8th, 2013 at 08:04 PM

    Hi David,

    Thank you always for your feedback!

    > The point of the article was that girls learn how to express themselves and communicate with others from a very young age, whereas boys are so focussed on competing and showing off that they don’t have time to learn these skills.

    I always wonder why boys(including my son) can enjoy themselves so much although they are just chasing each other….
    I think I would never understand it because I’m a woman. I often hear girls saying to boys, “バカみたい”.
    I agree with them!

    >As you probably know, Todai are thinking of changing to the Western system. That might be a good topic for another week.

    I agree.
    Anyway, I’m glad that Todai are thining of adopting the Western system because my son would probably study
    there in 15 years.

    Hi Anne,

    I’m very glad to see your comment here again!
    I hope you’re getting better!

    Have a nice weekend, all!



  3. Mika on Friday February 8th, 2013 at 08:51 PM

    Hi David,

    I’m sorry, I should say “I’m very happy to LEARN “hardly ever”.
    By the way, I used to teach high school students for 14 years and I thought that teaching boys was easier than girls. Of course I loved teaching girls, too.

    Hi everyone,
    It’s a very cold night. Please stay warm.



  4. Tomo on Friday February 8th, 2013 at 09:29 PM

    Hi David

    Thank you for your feedback.

    >>girls learn how to express themselves and communicate with others from a very young age

    I’m very interested in female and male student’s difference. And I remembered that, in junior high or high school, female students were always talking and male students went outside to play during break between classes.

    Hi Biwa

    >>By the way, are you going to work from April?

    Yes, I’m going to work from April and I have to go to Tokyo for training. But my home town is Chigasaki, Kanagawa, so I don’t very worry about it.

    One of the most worrying things is that I’ll have to get 800 points or more on TOEIC test, and I only have 670 points now. How can I get that on April? It is impossible!! So I am studying English more than usual now.



  5. Erina on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 01:20 AM

    Hi everyone!

    Nice to meet you. I’m happy to find this blog!
    It’s my first reading and comment. Now I’m studying English, so am not good at English.
    Also I can’t read all comments so sorry if I am interrupting your comment flow.

    1) How much stuff do you have in your closet that you have never worn or only worn once?
    This topic is fit for me because one of my hobby is shopping(How I express “耳が痛い” in English?).
    There are 10-15 stuff I have never worn.
    Like David-san, I am also conservative. I sometimes try vivid colors clothes I usually don’t wear such as a yellow sweater, a green skirt, however I don’t have courage to wear.

    2) How much stuff do you have in your closet that is now too small for you? Do you ever throw old clothes away?
    I don’t have stuff that is too small because I give them my cousin. She is five years younger than me and she is always willing to wear my clothes.

    3) What kind of things are you most likely to buy and never wear? (Shirts? Shoes? Jackets?)
    I have 5 skirts that are too short and I have never worn. I bought them online, so I couldn’t try on them. It’s very serious problem for me that online shopping is very enjoyable.

    P.S. It would be no problem if you can’t feedback my comment. I will comment to the new topic of next Monday .
    Have a nice weekend!



  6. Fumie on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 06:52 AM

    Hi David,

    Thank you always giving us feedback!
    >I was thinking the other day that if I added up the cost of all the things I have bought in my life that I didn’t need or never really used, it would be a scary amount of money.
    Same here. Purchasing (choosing only what we really need/want) isn’t easy.

    Weather forecast said it will be a cold weekend, so take care not to catch a flu.
    Have a lovely weekend, everyone!



  7. Anne on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 08:15 AM

    Hi David,

    Thank you for your feedback as always.

    >I usually advise people to say “close” with the verb pronunciation.
    —I see. Thanks for your advice.

    I’m getting better even though my right eye still doesn’t work at all,though… The time I have a look at the articles on PC is limited, however I guess posting comments here is one of the good ways to relieve my stress and to recharge my batteries:)

    It was cold even in the house this morning!
    Stay warm and take care not to catch the flue, everyone.

    Anne



  8. ashmoleanmuse on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 10:23 AM

    Brrr. It’s freezing cold this morning. Thanks for the feedback, David.

    > I guess this is a typo,

    Exactly.

    > but I wouldn’t use “down in the mouth” anyway. It’s more natural to say, “when I’m feeling down.”

    The English chap once emailed me, “I’m down in the mouth”. On, and he liked using lots of pompous words.

    Ash



  9. YU on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 10:34 AM

    Hi Erina,

    Nice to have you with us! 🙂

    > How I express “耳が痛い” in English?

    My dictionary says :

    1. それを聞くと耳が痛い
    That hits a sore spot./That makes my ears burn.

    2. 彼女に耳の痛いことを言われた
    Her criticism of me really hit the mark[where it hurts].

    I’m looking forward to your comment next week!

    Hi Anne,

    > I’m getting better even though my right eye still doesn’t work at all,though…

    I’m very sorry to hear that, but I hope it will work soon again.

    > however I guess posting comments here is one of the good ways to relieve my stress and to recharge my batteries

    That’s good!
    I like to post comments during my work for change, too.
    As you know, I correct students papers. This week, I correct a large quantity of “模試”. It is very difficult. I can’t believe that it is a 模試 for ninth graders(中3)!! It takes me much longer time to correct a paper than usual. I’m very frustrated, so I’m writing a comment now. :p

    Hi Tomo,

    > But my home town is Chigasaki, Kanagawa

    Oh really? Then, do we live close each other?!

    > One of the most worrying things is that I’ll have to get 800 points or more on TOEIC test, and I only have 670 points now.

    Wow! That means, you will work in a departement
    where high English knowledge is required?
    Anyway, I think “670” is already a high score, but I feel that your writing skill is at least much higher than the score shows!
    When I was in university, I couldn’t write even one English sentence properly(!), so I admire you!!

    > How can I get that on April? It is impossible!!

    I don’t think it is impossible, but maybe it is difficult. The best way to improve your score in a short period of time is to try 過去問 as many as possible and get used to the test. However, I don’t think TOEIC score often doesn’t really mean much. I know many people who can’t communicate in English well even they hold a high score like 700, 800, 900.
    Anyway, good luck with your studying!!



  10. YU on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 11:00 AM

    【correction】

    > I don’t think TOEIC score often doesn’t really mean much.

    I don’t think the TOEIC store often really means much.



  11. ashmoleanmuse on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 02:43 PM

    David,

    “I’m down” by The Beatles.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dHIlvGAP1lQ

    So “I’m down” sounds natural?



  12. YU on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 02:53 PM

    Hi David,

    May I ask you a question?

    My student writes :

    The picture which autumn leaves were painted is so beautiful.

    I guess what he wants to say is “もみじが描かれた絵はとても美しい”.

    1. How would you correct this if you had to use his original sentence as much as possible?

    How about “Pictures in which autumn leaves are painted are very beautiful.”?

    2. Could you tell me the natural version?

    How about “Paintings of autumn leaves are very beautiful.”? Does this sound too simple?



  13. Biwa on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 06:41 PM

    Hi David,

    Thank you always for your feedback. It seems like I will never be able to use the present perfect tense correctly:( I’ll do my best, but please don’t give up teaching such a bad student like me!

    Hi Tomo and YU,

    So that means there are at least three “神奈川県民” here♪♪♪ I live in Yokohama. By the way, “Eboshi” is one of my favorite restaurants.

    For the TOEIC test, I agree with YU. I think the most important things to get a good score is “to get used to the speed” and “忍耐力 for the long sentences”.
    I took the TOEIC test about three years ago for the first time in my life. I tried the 過去問 with a clock in front of me. It’s good because you will be able to decide how much time you should spend for each section.
    I think the 長文読解parts are not so difficult if you remeber the techniques you learned during 受験勉強, but I guess, for many people, the speed of how the listening part goes on is quite hard. It’s more like a test to see how fast you can read the alternatives(選択肢) than to see how much you understand the language! What I did was to read the alternatives before the CD starts reading the questions, but you need to practice quite a lot because it means you have to read while you’re hearing something completely different! I wonder how 聖徳太子could do that because I always got worn out.
    Anyway, good luck with your studying, Tomo!



  14. Biwa on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 07:04 PM

    Hi YU,

    >The picture which autumn leaves were painted is so beautiful.

    I think it’s fine if you add “on”.
    “The picture on which~~~” or “The picture which autumn leaves were painted on is so beautiful.”

    However, if I was standing in front of several pictures and was asked which was beautiful, I would say “The picture with the autumn leaves is beautiful.”



  15. YU on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 07:33 PM

    Hi Biwa,

    Thank you for sharing your idea.

    この文は長文の前後の文から推測して生徒が自分で英作しなくてはならないもので、実は「絵」はある特定のものを指すべきじゃないんです。

    > The picture on which~~~” or “The picture which autumn leaves were painted on is so beautiful.”

    私も最初なんとなくon と思ったけど、例えば ”flowers in the picture” 「絵の中に(描かれた)花」 とか言いませんか?だから in which を使ってみました。flowers on the picture が正しいのかな?わからないや。

    日本語では「もみじが描かれた」で過去形みたいだけど、英語の時は
    現在形でis/are painted とするべきかな、と思ったんだけど、これも間違ってるかな。



  16. David on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 09:10 PM

    Hi YU

    “Pictures of autumn leaves are beautiful” is the only way to say this. The other sentences are really unnatural. They just sound like Japanese sentences that use English words.



  17. amo on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 10:10 PM

    Hi David,

    Thanks for your feedback.

    Hi YU and David,

    About your question, the original sentence was ” the picture” not “pictures” so shouldn’t it be “The picture of autumn leaves is beautiful?”
    Or are there any reasons that you changed to “Pictures” instead of “the picture.”

    Hi everyone,

    How’s your long weekend?
    Hope you all are having a great one:)

    amo



  18. YU on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 10:19 PM

    Hi David,

    Thank you for answering my question!
    It was really a great help!!

    > The other sentences are really unnatural. They just sound like Japanese sentences that use English words.

    I actually felt so because I’ve never seen sentences like that.

    Thank you again for your help.

    Good night.



  19. Fumie on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 10:20 PM

    Hi Erina,

    Nice to have you with us. I’m looking forward to reading your next comment.

    Hi Anne,

    >I’m getting better even though my right eye still doesn’t work at all,though…
    -I’m sorry to hear that. I hope you will recover completely.
    > The time I have a look at the articles on PC is limited, however I guess posting comments here is one of the good ways to relieve my stress and to recharge my batteries:)
    -It must be so frustrating for you that you are allowed to use PC for just a limited time. And I miss reading your comments, facebook and blog. At the moment, I read your older blog sometimes.
    Hang in there!



  20. YU on Saturday February 9th, 2013 at 10:21 PM

    Hi amo,

    I wrote the reason in the comment to Biwa.
    Please have a look!



  21. Biwa on Sunday February 10th, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    Hi YU,

    Sorry for sharing a bad idea! 

    >この文は長文の前後の文から推測して生徒が自分で英作しなくてはならないもので、実は「絵」はある特定のものを指すべきじゃないんです。

    I wonder what the question was like because I don’t really understand when you would say 「もみじが描かれた絵はとても美しい」without specifying a certain picture. 
    Anyway, that was a good exercise for me, too! Thanks!



  22. YU on Sunday February 10th, 2013 at 12:28 AM

    Hi Biwa,

    Please don’t apologize!

    I want to explain it, but I’m not allowed to tell you the details, sorry.

    とにかくこういう長文があって

    ————————————-
    Sentence A. [   B   ]Sentence C.
    ————————————–
    ————————————–
    Sentence D. [   E   ]Sentence F.

    前後の文に合うようにB.とD.に入る文を自分で考える、という感じの問題です。
    すごく変というか支離滅裂の答えが多くて採点しててすっごい疲れます。

    では!



  23. YU on Sunday February 10th, 2013 at 12:29 AM

    Hi Biwa,

    B と E でした!



  24. Biwa on Sunday February 10th, 2013 at 08:07 AM

    Hi YU,

    Thanks for explaining the question. I was thinking what kind of sentences would fit this case, but I couldn’t figure out!
    By the way, my younger son(中3) is learning 関係代名詞 right now, and he showed me his textbook. I found sentences like these:
    1. This is the hospital at which my aunt works.
    2. Here’s a map of the town in which aunt Sally lives.
    3. The bicycle whose front tire is flat is mine.

    Do you think these are natural? I would use “where” for the first two, and “with” for the third one. Of course, I will change the word order like “The bicycle with the flat (front) tire is mine.”
    I really hope he(my son) doesn’t start to hate English.



  25. Biwa on Sunday February 10th, 2013 at 11:15 AM

    Hi YU,

    しつこくてすみません・・・
    I just wanted to say I might have misunderstood David’s explanation. I mean, the problem is not the usage of 関係代名詞, but the usage of the verb “paint”.

    If you say “I painted autumn leaves on the picture.”, it might sound like 「何か別の絵または写真の上に紅葉の絵を描いた。」
    Also, if you say “I painted autumn leaves in the picture.”, would it sound like “I added some autumn leaves to my picture.”? Am I right?

    So if you want to say 「紅葉の描かれた絵」or「紅葉の絵を描く」, you have to say simply “pictures of autumn leaves” or “I paint autumn leaves.”
    It reminds me of the wrong Japanese like 「馬から落馬する。」or「骨を骨折する。」

    Anyway, the more I think, the more confused I get.(As always!) I’m going out for a change. It’s a really nice day today!



  26. YU on Sunday February 10th, 2013 at 12:45 PM

    Hi Biwa,

    Sorry that I couldn’t reply you earlier.
    When I was in school, I really hate 関係代名詞, so I always try not to use 関係代名詞 as much as possible even now. LOL!!
    As for the example sentences in your son’s English textbook, they might be grammatically correct, but in reality, I almost never hear native speakers speaking or writing sentences like them. So they are probably unnatural?
    前置詞+関係代名詞の形を教えるために無理やり教科書の中に不自然な文を盛り込んでいるのでは?という気がしますけど。私が持っている(高校生用の)参考書にもそんな感じの例文が書かれていますよ。

    >If you say “I painted autumn leaves on the picture.”, it might sound like 「何か別の絵または写真の上に紅葉の絵を描いた。」

    I guess I’ve never said “paint + on the picture” in my life, but maybe you can say that way?! Sorry, I’m not sure at all.

    > Also, if you say “I painted autumn leaves in the picture.”, would it sound like “I added some autumn leaves to my picture.”? Am I right?

    I’ve never made sentences like “I painted leaves in the picture”, either.
    I would probably say “I paint(draw) pictures of leaves.”, though….
    As you say, if I want to say “I added some autumn leaves….” I will write just as it is.

    > So if you want to say 「紅葉の描かれた絵」or「紅葉の絵を描く」, you have to say simply “pictures of autumn leaves” or “I paint autumn leaves.”

    I think so.

    See you!



  27. Biwa on Sunday February 10th, 2013 at 09:40 PM

    Hi YU,

    Thanks for answering! I sometimes really どつぼにハマるんです。I hope thinking about these things are something worthwhile.

    I also love to hear your questions about correcting your students’ papers. As you know, I teach only elementary school children, but some of the 6th graders and their parents asked me if I could continue teaching them after they enter junior high school. LOL! Too scary!



  28. Erina on Monday February 11th, 2013 at 12:01 PM

    Hi, YU and Fumie

    Thank you foy your comments !



  29. Erina on Monday February 11th, 2013 at 12:02 PM

    Sorry , for your comments!



  30. YU on Monday February 11th, 2013 at 02:00 PM

    Hi Biwa,

    > As you know, I teach only elementary school children, but some of the 6th graders and their parents asked me if I could continue teaching them after they enter junior high school. LOL! Too scary!

    That’s great!!
    I don’t think you need to worry about anything at all.
    If I remember correctly, Tomo(お母さんの方の) teaches(or used to teach?) English to her children and relative’s children. She told us that she bought the same textbook they used at their schools to prepare for the lesson and taught them. I don’t know what your students’ parents actually want you to teach their children, but I find Tomo’s way very nice and reasonable because your students will able to prepare for both English classes and tests of their schools at your class.
    その教科書に合わせた教師用の本(teaching guideみたいな)も多分売ってるんじゃないでしょうか?

    In my case, I just manage to correct their English because my company always sends me the model answers along with students papers, but I don’t think I can teach them the same contents face to face without them(model answers).

    By the way, my son will probably start taking English lessons after GW. He will learn from the same teacher of mine(I mean, my English club’s American teacher). The fee for lessons is only 3500 per month(4 lessons) because he teaches either at his home or at a public facility like コミュニティーセンター. So his classes are always popular and crowded!



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