Tag Archives: Chapter 2

Studies in English 1, week 4: May 11th, 2012

productivity in linguistics means the ability to create new words and concepts
productivity in linguistics means the ability to create new words and concepts

Today, we

  1. read chapter 2, “What is Language?” of “General Linguistics”, and summarised the following sections:
    1. Variety of message, Organization of sounds and Human Language versus Animal Communication.
  2. We answered the following questions:
    1. What does “productivity” mean?
      1. A:  “Most animals have a very limited number of messages that they can give or receive. A human can produce an incalculable number of new combinations from the elements of his language. Language can cope with entirely new situations by adding new items. Only human language is capable of dealing with unforeseen and novel situations.”
    2. What does “duality” mean?
      1. A: “Most animals can use each basic sound only once.  The number of messages an animal can send is restricted to the number of basic sounds. Each human language has a stock of sound units or phonemes which are similar in number to the basic sounds possessed by animals, between thirty and forty. These phonemes are in themselves meaningless, but they are combined into larger meaningful units or morphemes. The number of possible morphemes is enormous- an educated man might use up to 100 000, according to one calculation. This organisation of sounds into two layers, one of phonemes and one of morphemes, is known as duality or double articulation. Duality means that language is a much more powerful tool than animal communication systems, since the mathematical possibilities of combinations of morphemes are incalculable.”


  1. Find a famous book by these two famous linguists and their Japanese translation, and write their details down using the MLA format in the handout provided.
    1. Ferdinand de Saussure
    2. Noam Chomsky

      Duality of Patterning, from http://www.uni-due.de/DI/REV_Linguistics.htm
      Duality of Patterning, from http://www.uni-due.de/DI/REV_Linguistics.htm


Research in English (Linguistics) A session 9: June 17th, 2011

Charlemagne, one of the greatest European medieval rulers, lived from 747 to 814
Emperor Charlemagne, one of the greatest European medieval rulers, lived from 747 to 814

Today we finished chapter 2. Yay!

Some key points about today’s class:

  1. Celtic was once the main language of Europe. Paris, Belgrade (I said it’s in Yugoslavia, but I was wrong – it’s in Serbia!) and Dundee are all Celtic place-names (click the links to see where those towns are in Europe).
  2. Emperor Charlemagne, in English here and in Japanese here, ordered sermons to be conducted in lingua romana rustica (click here for Japanese Google translation)  instead of lingua latina from 813.
  3. Classical Latin (click here for Japanese) was different from ordinary or vulgar Latin. Today’s Spanish, Italian and French developed from this vulgar Latin rather than from classical Latin.
  4. This chapter refers to some places and people that Japanese people may not be familiar with, such as
    1. Charlemagne (see above)
    2. Pompeii (click here for Japanese Wikipedia entry)
    3. Sardinia (click here for Japanese Wikipedia entry)
    4. Mario Pei (click here for Japanese Yahoo Books search).


Read chapter 3. Ms. Aoki will prepare pages 35-36. Ms. Watanabe will prepare pages 36-37.

  1. In your summary, highlight the key points, not the details.
  2. Research about one topic that interests you, or some topic that may be unfamiliar to Japanese readers  in chapter 3.
  3. Quote your sources. Where did you get the information from? Always use at least two sources of information.
  4. This book is in English, for English speakers and uses English or European examples. On your own, find some Japanese examples for some of the topics in chapter 3.

Student voices

Ms. Aoki researched about Latin vulgate. Read about it in English here, and in Japanese here. She also researched about Romance Language.

Ms. Watanabe researched about Thracian language, the Etruscan language and Tocharian languages.


Research in English (Linguistics) A session 7: June 3rd, 2011

  1. We read the textbook from page 23 – 26, with explanations from Ms. Aoki and Ms. Takeuchi.
  2. What were the key points of today’s lesson?
    1. The Basque people live in the Pyrenees, the mountains between France and Spain

      the Basque country (image from Wikipedia)
    2. Because the Basque’s live in the area as the Cro-Magnon cave-paintings, perhaps the Basque language is a remnant of the Cro-Magnon people?

      Lascaux cave painting
      Lascaux cave painting (image from Wikipedia, click to see a larger one)
    3. Human beings all began to develop language at about the same time: 30,000 years ago. Why? It’s a mystery.
      1. Even remote peoples developed their own languages, e.g. the Ainu, whose language is different from Japanese, and has some similarities with European languages.
    4. There are three main racial groups amongst humans: Caucasian, Mongoloid and Negroid (though the Japanese Wikipedia article claims there are 4 groups: “過去の自然人類学文化人類学では、ネグロイド、および北アフリカヨーロッパ西アジアアラブ南アジアなどに見られるコーカソイド(白色人種)、オセアニアに見られるオーストラロイド、東アジア・東南アジア・ポリネシア・南北アメリカ大陸などに見られるモンゴロイド(黄色人種)を4大人種として分類していた。” The Ainu, although they live in Hokkaido, look like Caucasians more than Mongoloid. However, according to Wikipedia, this theory has been disproved by DNA testing:

      Full-blooded Ainu are lighter skinned than their Japanese neighbors and have more body hair.[22] Many early investigators proposed a Caucasian ancestry,[23] although recent DNA tests have not shown any genetic similarity with modern caucasian Europeans.

    5. Japanese and Korean are, like Basque, unrelated to other languages.
    6. Recent studies of cognates show that the world’s languages may be related, despite their differences.
    7. There are many theories which try to explain how language began. Some of these theories have funny names: Bow-wow theory, Ding-dong theory, Pooh-pooh theory, Yo-He-Ho theory. (Actually, only the Bow-wow theory is genuine; the others were made up by Bill Bryson.)
    8. “For a long time it was believed that language was simply learned.” (Bryson, 1990, p. 25)
    9. But then came Chomsky and his idea of “universal grammar“.
    10. “To a baby, no language is easier or more difficult than any other… children seem to be programmed to learn language.” (ibid. 26)
    11. “All children everywhere learn language in much the same way.” (ibid.  26)


  1. Is music language? Why (why not)?
  2. Is art language? Why (why not)?
  3. Prepare your section of chapter 2:
    1. Give us the key points (see my summary above 例として上記に書いた要約を読んでください)
    2. Do a little bit of research (see my point about Ainu above 例として上記にアイヌについて書いた要約を読んでください)
    3. Type up, print out and bring your list of sources 参照文献 to next class. Refer to the MLA handbook or to the handout I gave you.

Research in English (Linguistics) A session 5: May 20th, 2011

What is language?
What is language? By dgray_xplane on Flickr, via nfp 2.0 http://www.nfp2.co.uk/2007/06/01/doing-things-together/index.html
  1. What is the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis?
  2. What is Language? (handout: chapter 2 from “Introduction to Linguistics” by Jean Aitchison).


  1. Answer the 5 questions to the chapter “What is Language?”
  2. Your mother asks you, “What did you study today in Research in English?” What will you tell her? Explain to her in easy language (in Japanese). Then post this as a comment on the class blog or send as an email to me.
  3. Prepare a paragraph from chapter 2 of “The Mother Tongue”.

Student voices – Writing Strategies 1, session 3: May 13th, 2011

Student voices
  1. It was very useful for me to discuss with my partners, because each person had a few different idea.  I could understand more than before the class. I’ll do my best for Chapter 3 & 4, as well.
  2. 13日の授業では、Chapter1とChapter2の本文の内容について
  3. I read Chapter1 and 2 of “The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe”, and answered ten questions. The questions were a little difficult for me,
    but I could understand and enjoyed reading the book.
  4. I learned “The CHRONICLES of NARNIA”, yesterday. It was difficult foe me to be an essay question. I want to improve my English skills.
  5. We read Chapter1 & 2 of “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” and answered some questions about it last Friday. I enjoyed reading it and could understand the story. I thought the Faun was a good Faun, because he told Lucy the truth before telling the White Witch that a Daughter of Eve was there. I’m looking forward to taking next class.
  6. Yesterday, we read chapter 1 through chapter 2 of the book, and found the answers of teacher’s questions and Study Guide questions. In addition, I leaened a lot of new wards. I couldn’t find all the answers. So I felt that I should read the book more and more deeply. I enjoyed your class, thank you.
  7. Today, we checked answer about chapter 1 and 2. I corrected 8 questions of the vocabulary quiz. I incorrected the number 5.
    I watched NARNIA by DVD. Today, I learned about NARNIA’s story in detail. I want to learn about this books more, so I’ll do my best. Today’s class was interesting! I’m looking forward next class. See you next time.
  8. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe is very interesting! This book is not so hard and clearly understand. The sentences in the book are usefull.  I would like to keep studying this book.
  9. 今日の授業で、chapter1,2の課題の答え合わせをし、意味がよくわからなかった単語や英語の表現について知ることができました。
  10. Today, we checked expressions that are in the text. And professor gave us some questions from chapter1 & 2 and we solved. It made my understanding of story more deep. I remember “moth-balls” mean “bouchu-zai”! I thought I didn’t read so much because today I felt that it was little hard for me to solve your questions. I’m going to read next chapters hard.
  11. 今日も講義ありがとうございました。 今日の講義内容は、”The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Study Guide” を使ってのQ&Aでした。問題を解きながら読み進めていくと、より理解が深まって新しい単語も覚えられたので勉強になりました。来週も楽しみにしています。授業内容
  12. 今日の授業は、先生の問題に答えていくことで自分で読むときよりたくさんのことを理解できました。たまに問題の意味がわからないところがあったので聞き取りもできるようにしたいです。

These are the comments I’ve received by email by Sunday May 15th, 10 a.m. There are more summaries in the comments.

Writing Strategies 1, session 3: May 13th, 2011

Cave Hotel - would Mr. Tumnus like this one, do you think? Photo from The Telegraph. Clink image to visit source page)
  1. Check answers to the Study Guide questions for chapters 1 and 2.
  2. Quiz on chapters 1 and 2


  1. By midnight Friday May 13th write a short summary of today’s class and send it to me by email. Subject (件名):WS May 13 comment Full Name
    1. what did we do today? Did you learn something new? Something interesting? What do you remember about today’s class?
  2. By midnight Wednesday May 18th, write a brief account of a Japanese myth (200 words) and send it to me as an attachment.
    1. Write it in Microsoft Word or a similar word-processing software.
    2. use the “college paper” format – see the image below, or watch this 10-minute video that shows you how to format MS Word 2007
    3. double-spaced
    4. Use spell-check.
    5. Use word-count.
    6. Save the file as “Writing Strategies Japanese Myth Your Name”.
    7. Send it as an attachment to me by email by Wednesday midnight, May 18th.
    8. The email subject 件名 must be “Writing Strategies Japanese Myth Your Name”.
  3. By next class (Friday May 20th), read LWW chapters 3 and 4, and answer the Study Guide questions Vocabulary and 1-4 (on pages 15 + 16).
  4. By the class after next (Friday May 27th): are there any publications in Japanese like the Spark Notes for “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”? (see handout). If so, where can they be found and/or bought? What are the contents like? Are they useful?
  5. By the class after next (Friday May 27th), find 10 customer reviews in Japanese about “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” (for example on Amazon Japan), and choose the best one (in your opinion).  It doesn’t matter if the original book is the English version or the Japanese translation. Reviews of this book are OK, too. The 10 customer reviews should include both positive and negative reviews. Print out the best one and bring it to class. Be prepared to explain to the class why you think it is a good review.
  6. College paper format College paper format. (Image courtesy of Mr. Lopate’s “Writing Tips and Hints” blog. Click the image to visit the blog)

Writing Strategies 1, session 2: May 6th, 2011


Pan and Psyche by Edward Burne-Jones, 1874
Pan and Psyche by Edward Burne-Jones via hotgothiclayouts

In today’s session:

  1. Please do the homework, even if you are late: my job is
    1. to teach you, and
    2. to assess you – do you keep your promises? Do you keep deadlines?
  2. Report format (see below) for May 18th homework.
  3. Study Guides
  4. Translate first paragraph (pages 1-2)
  5. Study Guide, chapters 1-2, vocabulary questions 1-9 (pp. 9-12). Answer the questions for homework.
  6. check our answers to the homework questions
    1. what is myth?
    2. Find out what the following mythic creatures are – find the Japanese name or translation, and find an image for each one (click the links to see some images for each word): faun, nymph, dryad, naiad, jinn, satyr, centaur, minotaur
  7. quiz on these words: write the English that you hear AND the Japanese meaning.


  1. Finish reading chapters 1 and 2 and answer the Study Guide questions for chapters 1 and 2.
  2. For May 18th, write a brief account of a Japanese myth (200 words).
    1. Write it in Microsoft Word or a similar word-processing software.
    2. use the format below
    3. double-spaced
    4. Use spell-check.
    5. Use word-count.
    6. Save the file as “Writing Strategies Japanese Myth Your Name”.
    7. Send it as an attachment to me by email by Wednesday midnight, May 18th.
    8. The email subject 件名 must be “Writing Strategies Japanese Myth Your Name”.

College paper format

college paper format

(Thanks to Mr. Lopate’s blog “Writing Tips & Hints” for the image of the college paper format)

Writing Strategies II, Session #3: October 15th, 2010

Rolltop Desk
Image by Kamintra via Flickr

Homework: (for October 22nd)

  1. Answer question 9, Study Guide page 14. Write your answer as a comment on this blog (in either Japanese or English). Deadline is Wednesday October 20th, 6 p.m.
  2. Read chapters 3, 4, 5. If you do not read these chapters, you will be unable to take part in the class discussion next week.
  3. Study Guide p. 22: read questions 12-14 and read the Bible passages (in Japanese).

In today’s class, we:

  1. checked the homework (Study Guide p. 8),
  2. had a vocab quiz on the words on page 9,
  3. translated the passages on page. 11,
  4. filled in the table about Uncle Andrew on page 12,
  5. answered the questions on page 13
  6. answered questions 7 and 8 on page 14.
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Writing Strategies session #4: Friday, May 14th, 2010

  1. Discuss your homework answers with your neighbour.
  2. Hand in your homework.
  3. Chapter summaries. Your summaries are mostly too detailed. Give only the important information.
  4. Using the proper format, take in dictation sample summaries for chapters 1, 2 and 3.
  5. Chapter 4: read and translate. We read and translated up to page 39 (top paragraph).


  1. For next week (May 21st): go to DWC library and list all the books – in both English and Japanese translations –  by C.S. Lewis. Divide your list into fiction and non-fiction titles.
  2. Borrow from the DWC library at least two books by C.S.Lewis in Japanese translation and begin reading them.
    1. You must read one book by C.S. Lewis in Japanese and write a report about it this semester.
    2. The book can be either fiction or non-fiction.
    3. Any title is OK except the two textbooks (“The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” and “The Magician’s Nephew”).
    4. Choose your book by session #6, May 28th.
  3. Finish reading chapter 4 and write a short summary of it in English.
  4. Read and prepare chapter 5.
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Interactive Writing II Session #6: October 30th, 2009

  1. Listen to my summary of chapter 1. Answer my questions.
  2. Write down/note these 7 questions, and answer them in English for homework. Post the answers to your blog AND give them to me next class (November 6th):
    1. What happened in your life when you were 7-10 years old? (E.g., when I was 7, my family moved to Algeria in North Africa. We lived in Algiers for 9 months. I did not play with the neighbours, unfortunately.)
    2. When you were a child, what kind of home did you live in?
    3. Did you have neighbours? Did the neighbours have children?  Did you play with them?
    4. Nona moved from India to England when she was 8. Did you move somewhere far away when you were growing up?
    5. Did you ever live next door to an empty house or flat? How did you feel?
    6. The house next door in the story “Little Plum” is made new, it is renovated. Has your home or a room in your home ever been renovated? Have you lived in a renovated house? How does it feel?
    7. In “Little Plum”, the girl next door has many toys and much furniture. How about you? Did you have many toys when you were growing up? Did you have a favourite toy? What was it?
  3. Read along with me as I read the rest of chapter 2. Be ready to answer my questions about the meaning of words and phrases.
  4. Homework exchange: show the picture and meaning that you looked up for homework.
  5. Collected:
    1. what kind of girl is Nona? What kind of girl is Belinda? (What are their characters like?)
    2. Diagram showing the relationships between the people in the story.
  6. Homework:
    1. translate into Japanese the section of chapter 3 I assigned to you.
    2. post on your blog the picture and the meaning of the word you looked up for last week’s homework. Do this by Wednesday Nov. 4th, 23:59. (Bring your paper to class next week Nov. 6th)
    3. post on your blog your answers to the 7 questions above.  Do this by Wednesday Nov. 4th, 23:59. (Bring your paper to class next week Nov. 6th)