Why most foreign English teachers tend to be American/Candian

STRAIGHT INTO IT!

1.) Because America + North America is HUGE. It’s one of the top most influential countries in the world and therefore is a central source for both producing and receiving global media (such as music, film and art). Kpop, K dramas and Japanese media get played both on technical devices and live way more than in other non-asian countries for example. This means it is more likely that East Asian produce will be advertised there and thus results in a bigger amount of East Asian fans/interests.

2.) On top the fact that America + North America is massive, it’s also a primarily English speaking country. Yep, the UK, Australia, New Zealand etc are also native English speaking countries but America + Canada is bigger. Foreign English teachers need to be native English speaker so BOOM. You have a huge group of native English speakers that have been exposed to East Asian culture from all directions.

3.) Although it’s nowhere near necessary to be able to speak Japanese, Korean or Chinese to become an English teacher there it is sometimes seen as an advantage because it means living in the country will be much easier for you.  This is not a decisive factor though as many schools will request that you don’t speak the Japnese or Korean language to students anyway in order for them to be exposed and speak English far more than they speak their own language just so they will be able to advance faster. Anyway back to the point. The USA and Canada provide a much bigger educational system for East Asian studies from a younger age. As young as 16 upwards.  [I know a guy the same age as me now (17) and he could read and write in all 3 Japanese writing systems (Hirigana, Katakana and Kanji) and Korean script (Hangul) as well as being able to speak basic Japanese and basic Korean. PFFFT! In England if we want to achieve this we have to self study until we can afford private lessons or get a place on an East Asian uni course. This is most definitely not a rant…MERGHHH! Jelly jelly.]

These 3 elements do allow many American and Canadians to be successful in quickly securing jobs in Japan and Korea because of their exposure to the culture and language slightly more than the rest of us however this does not put us at a disadvantage at all. We’re all on the same level playing field because like I said, prior lessons to achieve near fluency in the language does not make you any less or more likely to gain a job in teaching English. What matters is that you are fluent in or a native English speaker – so basically population and therefore a higher likelihood of more people being interested in teaching in East Asia makes it more likely that most foreign English teachers will come from the USA or Canada.

So obvious anyway but oh well!

My deductions! Good day bottoms! 🙂

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L’Oréal Miss Manga Mascara & model’s blog!

miss-manga-loreal-mascaraTEEHEE! Stumbled across another cute advert for a Japanese manga inspired product! This time it’s a cosmetic, a mascara, by L’Oréal called the ‘Mega Volume Miss Manga’ mascara.

I’ve been waiting for a mascara to be advertised as producing manga eyes and here it is! This mascara is supposed to volumize both your upper and lower lashes ‘so eyes look more open’. Big and wide like manga eyes – that’s what it’s comparable to. It look quite good actually! How does it achieve this?

Well apparently the “exclusive formula, made up of enlarging collagen spheres works perfectly in conjunction with the 360° flexible cone shaped brush to amplify upper lashes and reveal lower lashes. The exclusive formula also contains a trilogy of polymers for absolute hold and staying power.”

The advert for this is cute and quirky, at least the UK advert is which is the only one I’ve ever seen. If there’s a US version let me know! It begins with a cute toy being hoisted out of a novelty ‘grabber’ and Cara Delavigne appears  (English model), hair cute in little buns and she’s sporting Japanese-y fashion – a cute black dress with a white collar and tights that have black hearts running all the way up the side of the leg. Very Japan. She breathes “manga” and the music starts. DADADADADA IT’S STUCK IN MY HEAD. The tune anyway. All throughout the advert there’s manga references (no shit sherlock) in the form of chipping in “so manga”, a big panda bear placed in the middle of the room and there’s even a girl kissing a glass sheet of manga. Yep, glass. Like on art programmes or when detectives draw up their notes where they sometimes use a glass board to write on with marker? It’s like that. Cute and sexy! Check out the ad here!

I think I’d quite like to try out this mascara and if I do I’ll definitely give it a review! So far I’ve seen it in most drugstores, Superdrug stocks it at about £5.99. Not bad!

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And now for my second piece of news! Recently my friend started a blog – Drew (15) is an upcoming model signed with FM London one of the biggest UK modelling agencies (Top 5). She’s recently been offered a 6-12 month contract with ASOS and has done small photoshoots since late last year with more to come so, although it’s only just beginning with not so much material at the moment, her blog will later most likely be her experiences throughout her modelling career, what she goes through, what she does and at the present time probably loads of her personal life/thoughts. So if you’re interested in this sort of thing have a ‘follow’ of her blog! She’ll be posting more throughout this year and onward. Oh, almost forgot hohoho, she’s also on instagram (@queendrew7) which she updates far more often!

Have a great week guys! Mwah! (:


Want to get to know that country more? Ask for a vlog!

Sometimes it can be difficult to get to know Japan or Korea more without actually being there. I mean there’s only so much you can learn through reading online! Even some online bloggers can only show so much of the city they’re in. The purpose of the video may not be to show you the city and even if it is it may be sped up or muted with background music or just a quick flick around a shopping centre nearby or something.

My Korean friend E eventually asked ‘Hey! Can you video your city for me!’ So E and I decided to send each other a vlog of our town/city! I’ve gone round Leeds as I went out with my friend today anyway and I took some footage of us walking round the city centre and in and out of some places we went to find somewhere to eat, we strolled around Trinity and around the side streets whilst I talked through where we were going. I actually had to separate my footage because Leeds was too big to vlog the whole thing from a camera with about 10 minutes of recording left in it but it was enough to capture ALOT. E is sending me some footage of his hometown, which isn’t in Seoul and is in fact quite a small area. I think it’s important to capture life outside of the capital of a country as well. It helps to paint the whole picture. (:

So why not ask your friend to vlog a little bit and send it your way? Of course don’t make friends with someone just for this reason, but if you have a friend who can ask for a couple of minutes. It’s not always necessary to talk, E is too shy to speak English as people will most likely stare since it’s only a small town. But it’s easy for me to, in fact nobody gave a damn in Leeds, people just walked straight past!

SO BOOM! Just a little suggestion. And if I don’t blog tomorrow I hope eveyrone has a FABULOUS New Year and I hope it all goes amazing for you! Mwah! (:


Christmas red and Crimbo pressies for dad and sis! UPDATE

So I’m feeling more festive now that my dad has decided to put up the Christmas decorations – balloons and trimmings and soon the tree! I’ve changed my blog’s background to a more Christmassy red – I think I’ll do this every Christmas season. HOHOHO!

*Edit: I ended up changing it to a darker red because the fricken text wouldn’t show up well on the original shade errhh*

On another note! I’ve ordered some pressies for my dad and sister, which of course I found searching Japanese gifts on Amazon, and might I say I WANT THEM.

So for my dad I bought a Hanayama puzzle – it’s the Armour (Adam&Eve) one! Hanayama puzzles are Japanese puzzles – little metal ones that range from 1-6 in difficulty level. I love puzzles and so does my dad so I thought this would be PERFECT for him as he appreciates Japanese culture too. The only problem was choosing a puzzle, there’s TONS but since I had a limited amount of money I went with a cheaper one. OOH.

So then for my sister, I bought some tights/stockings which, in Japanese style, have a black colour from the bottom to  half way up the thigh, but THEN they have an Eiffel tower on the thigh! OFT! Eiffel tower tights!! I felt this was appropriate, my sister loves Japan and she also takes French. Perfik! Only downside was hers takes longer to be delivered!

By the way I have NO idea what to get my mum. She loves gardening, it’s her hobby and work so she’s like ‘OH just get me something for the garden or something I need’ but I’ve no clue what to get her. Errrrrhhh, I’ll figure something out!! She’s hard to buy for!

See you soon people! (:


Who else likes 7!! oops? And UPDATE: why I may blog less frequently for a bit…

BOOM! They’re just such a feel good band, been out for a couple of years, not necessarily new as I heard them first on Naruto Shippuden ages ago (playing ‘lovers’ as an opening theme) but I love ‘Sweet Drive’. It’s just such a ‘wind-through-your-hair-whilst-driving-in-a-van feeling’ which is pretty much a quarter of the music video. 🙂

OFT! On replay on my iPod alllll the time recently, I need a pick me up now due to school and uni preparations which is why I’m writing this post. I’m aware that when I started this blog I was blogging once every couple of days but I started this in the summer hols meaning I had tons more time. Now I’m in Sixth Form and we’re preparing for uni and revising for exams next summer, which seems a long way away but will go by pretty fast. Not to mention the fact that I need to get decent grades to enter uni! Pffft, the only thing I can focus properly on right now is trying to get everything sorted for my classes each day – this doesn’t mean I’m not focusing here, I’m just spending less time mulling over what to post next. So in advance, I may be blogging once a week or so as I have been doing already (I think).

I know on a lot of student blogs or working bloggers you’ll hear people saying ‘sorry I really need to focus on my studies’ and it seems like ‘well, seriously you don’t have to spend ages its only 5 minutes of your time for a post’ but it’s really not. It really does take time to write a post even when it seems simple and structured. Anyhoodledoodle! Just an update lovies, see you in the next post! (:


Advice for students choosing a Uni – East Asian Studies?

So I’ve been attending Japanese/East Asian talks at different universities to find out which one is right for me and let me tell you IT’S WORTH IT. Teachers drill it into you (at least mine do) how important it is to look round every uni you’re considering  as a lot of the time you’ll be surprised, and they’re right. Uni’s might teach the same subjects but they are definitely taught differently. In my case I was looking for East Asian Studies specifically Japanese AND Korean because I have still yet to decide which I am really set on. I KEEP SWITCHING OKAY! And my personal statement must be done in a couple of weeks…bloody hell.

So my advice, if it wasn’t obvious enough, is to find out the open days of every uni you’re considering and attend.the.relevant.talks. This applies to all subjects, not only EAS, however, since I’m taking EAS I’m going to refer to it throughout this post now. I attended the talks of both Sheffield and Leeds and I’m going to compare them as an example.

Just to make sure before I start, this is my opinion completely, it isn’t a fact and I shouldn’t need to clarify this but of course, on the internet its necessary to avoid misinterpretations SO:

Uni of Sheffield – teaches both Japanese and Korean (both languages can be paired with other subjects) and the talk was a general EAS talk covering Japanese, Korean and Chinese. The head of the Japanese talk and the head of the Korean talk were present at the time of my talk and they were both fantastic! Yep, they had a power point but knew exactly how to ‘work’ it, not relying on it too much at all, they simply used it as a starter for each section and had no problem talking to us, the small group that was there. I believe H.Dobson is the name of the head of the Japanese department and he led the talk – he ran it beautifully, the presentation, the casual way he delivered the talk and the humor as well. It was all fantastic, great content, great answering of queries, great delivery. His co-presenter, the head of the Korean department also delivered her side of the talk very well. It wasn’t split into two parts, but rather they both delivered together which was really efficient. Sheffield sends their EAS students abroad in their 3rd year.

Not one part of this talk bored me and even afterwards they suggested, if people had more questions, that we talk outside as they talk had finished, however unfortunately I had to meet the friend I was with so I didn’t get the chance. They provided us with literature, info about the talk and email addresses for more questions which I made good use of – I enjoyed the talk so much that I even emailed them with my questions and had to mention that I wanted to sit in there all day and talk about the course. Sheffield sold it to me. Just brilliant.

Uni of Leeds – teaches only Japanese and Chinese for EA but again they can be paired with other subjects for dual honours. I have to admit, I was slightly more bored with this talk. It was specifically for Japanese, not any other language and it was run by a foreign European woman and a native Japanese woman. During the talk the European tutor basically read straight off the slide show, all the information was on there and I didn’t particularly find her delivery of the course very engaging. After which the native Japanese tutor explained her part but admitted most of it had been covered. I got the feeling that despite presenting this every year they probably hadn’t been prepared. I felt like Leeds was trying to sell itself a bit too obviously at this point due to the presentation of statistics and there was a lot of commenting on why they thought their system worked best. However I enjoyed myself quite a bit more when a 4th year student came in to talk to us, she was very social and engaging and we clarified a few questions everyone had with her which was very helpful.

It was mentioned that Leeds actually sends students to Japan in their 2nd year unlike a lot of universities who send their students in the 3rd year. This was was because they felt that students benefited a lot from the rapid expansion of vocab and speaking skills picked up abroad which made it easier for students to come back and finish their second half of uni in England. Apparently, it’s easier to work on future preparations and workloads when you do not have reverse culture shock to deal with which is completely true and well said.

I was expecting Leeds to have a really mind-blowing EAS talk but I admittedly I was a little disappointed. Overall, like I said before, I was in love with Sheffield the minute I stepped into that room. The way they presented was just fantastic and its definitely going to be my first choice no matter what whether I take Japanese or Korean.  So as demonstrated in this post, no talk is going to be the same in one uni as it will be in another! Make sure you do your research first! You do not want to be stuck in a uni you hate.

BOOM! Hope this post helped at least a little! And enjoy your open days!


Anime! Does anime = cartoon?

So today whilst chatting with my Japanese friend T I started questioning what anime actually is, what it’s defined as in both Japan and non-Japanese countries. He sent  me a link to this Japanese show which, to me, was a cartoon, but to him, was anime. He said; ‘I like this anime hehe’ and I was like ‘Is it animeeeeeeee….?…Really. Is it?!’

This is the anime he sent me: Episode 2 The Monster-making Machine 

Haha! What a nutjob but anyhoo! This anime, as he called it, doesn’t seem to be drawn in the traditional anime style. It seems to be drawn in the same way (what westerners call) cartoons are drawn.

^ what I call a cartoon character

^ what I call an anime character

The short answer is that anime and cartoons both mean exactly the same thing.

The long answer is that they are different depending on whether you’re Japanese or Western/non-Japanese. 

Obviously I’m going to elaborate on the long answer because, well it’s the long answer so it makes sense hohoho. Short answer is done. BOOM. So long answer:

In the Western world cartoons have many different styles of being drawn but only Japanese cartoons have the distinctive features of ‘anime’. These are features such as the eyes, for example, which is one of the biggest give-aways. The general layout of the movements and the exclamation art that occurs when someone is maybe shouting/fighting or feeling a strong emotion. Anime has it own unique characteristics which, and along with the fact that it does not originate from the Western world but from Japan, is why it is referred to by another word other than ‘cartoon’. We know when something is a Western Cartoon and we know when something is a Japanese Cartoon. We simply use the term ‘anime’ to describe Japanese Cartoons. It’s literally just to distinguish between the two, it’s the same as if you’d say ‘Oh I was watching that German Cartoon the other night’ but instead of saying German you’ll have some word for it. If you say ‘oh I was watching that Japanese Cartoon the other night’ it’s the same as saying ‘oh I was watching that anime the other night’. We have a distinctive term for it so we use it.

Finally, ‘anime’  アニメ is literally just short for ‘animation’ which Japan refers to as any animation Western or Japanese or Korean or Chinese or any cartoon. Cartoons are anime in Japan, they’re the same thing, they’re animations therefore they are anime.

They have this shortened word which means exactly the same thing as cartoon does. To us all cartoons are cartoons, in Japan all animations are anime. There is only one thing that could possibly blow this whole explanation apart which is that in the Western world, yep, we do say cartoon for cartoons however, this seems to only apply to drawn cartoons. Things like Wallace&Gromit however are seen as animations. I’ve just tried to elaborate on this query but it’s made my brain go nuts trying to word it and I’m much too lazy to try and spend time doing so. Bum. OOOOOOOOH. I’ll leave you think on that but anyway sorry if I ruined this whole explanation for you with that HAHA! If you do have a definite answer or if you even just have a suggestion/idea please comment and let me know, I’d love to hear peeps’ thoughts!

P.S. I feel bad for starting this insane thinking cycle all over again, what does animation REALLY mean?!!! Let me put an end to the misery. Anime, for Westeners, is a Japanese Cartoon, any Japanese cartoon, and anime, for Japanese, is any animation at all. (: