Are these resources free?
Yes. But, they have a watermark strictly for education-use in Japanese public schools. Schools/companies and individuals with a for-profit mindset, please use paid teaching materials from other sources. Those who suggest in improving this site by Eigo Ganbare paying for a service, the answer will be "NO". Because there's no current budget for it as this site depends on word of mouth and any future consideration of Eigo Ganbare using a paid service will need a purpose with educational merits, like apps in which all JTEs and ALTs can use in the classroom. Moreover, it's essential for Patreon educators to know how their donation is being used.
Why are these resources free? And...
Indirect answer: "If the Japanese government didn’t provide me with airfare (twice!!) and all the other benefits, I wouldn’t be in Japan nor have the financial means to come here."
In other words, those with limited educational resources due to financial means whether they are teachers or students, they can have these readily available on here.
Another objective in understanding the educational purpose of this website, includes incorporating the merits of classroom team-teaching and how ALTs can beneficially contribute into Japanese public schools. An article, Team-Teaching in English: Working for the Students, was published on ALT Training Online. For others, like ② and ③ please read "A Message For You". ③ has been published on 北河内地区中学校英語教育研究会 handbook.
A Message For You: ① Team-Teaching in English (2017) | ② The Pen Pal Project (2015) | ③ JHS English Club: Success is Doing (2014) <= English & 日本語
In regards to images on Lesson Worksheets on Step 1 and the Classroom Portal, they are used as illustrations of a character or characters in a comic book, video game, or animated television program or film. The copyright for it is most likely held by either the publisher/producer and/or artist(s) producing the work in question. It is believed that the use of low-resolution images of character artwork: 1. for commentary on the character or characters in question 2. on Eigo Ganbare for non-profit educational purpose only, qualifies as fair use under copyright law. Any other uses of these images, on Eigo Ganbare or elsewhere, may be copyright infringement.
Do the ads cover the expenses on Eigo Ganbare?
No. There are only reduced obstructive Google Ads at the bottom of each website page and they do NOT at all offset the cost of Eigo Ganbare. If you can, please support Eigo Ganbare on Patreon. There are still many educational fair-use content materials if copyright images are of a major issue for you, such as the revise guided text-only lesson plans on Step 2, the pen pal project worksheets, and the English club guided lessons. These are where you can contribute. On Patreon, you can see who is contributing, how your contribution is used, and help reach its minimum goal of 300 patrons.
Eigo Ganbare, established in 2010, does not have sponsorships and this kind of sponsored-revenue is a rare custom to do in Japan.
Will there be a paywall?
I hope not! But, as more educational tools, like Kahoot and Quizlet, are shifting towards paid-option tiers, it will limit Eigo Ganbare in using their basic services and more work on my end. Through donations via Patreon, I hope one day I could use their premium service, so you can use these features on Eigo Ganbare.
If a paywall becomes a necessity, then it'll strictly be on content materials with no copyright images. For instance, the revise guided text-only lesson plans on Step 2, NOT the Step 1: Lesson Worksheets. I may also need to consider charging the Interactive PowerPoint game templates and etc. This is due to 1. skepticisms from others who are unaware of this website altruistic intention and unaware of 2. someone higher up with the opposite intention and is working with AMES to bring their curriculum that includes their own certified NETs into MEXT and has personally stated the death for most content providers in Japan. In the meantime, it's essential that ALTs support ALT content creators and visa versa.
The schools only have shared-computers and their Office are in Japanese, how can I make my lesson materials or worksheets?
There are free educational cloud version of Microsoft Office, Google G-Suite, and 3rd party cloud Office alternatives that you can use here. I highly recommend FriendOS to access your workspace on the cloud. What is FriendOS? Try out their cloud demo and if you like it, request a free account. Other than that, there are even free cloud photo editing tools, digital blackboard, and brainstorm mapping tools!! Google G-Suite offers educational add-on plugins. As for data cloud drives to store your work-related teaching materials and have access to educational collaboration tools are included with (free basic) registered school accounts.
Where are these worksheets & digital worksheets based from?
Originally, based on the junior high school New Crown textbooks. Then, these worksheets followed the order of the junior high school New Horizon textbooks and have stayed that way ever since. The vocab section was based from the elementary school Hi Friends textbooks and then, transitioned to the Let's Try textbooks and We Can textbooks. The speaking section came from Eiken/GTEC, but the “testing” mindset was taken out – to focus on students’ communication in a school environmental setting and their life as a student.
Can I edit these worksheets?
No. Eigo Ganbare already has over 1000+ pages of content. If you like to make changes on the worksheets or customize to your own style, feel free to use these as only as a guided reference. Pre-made worksheets for Japanese public schools were created for specific reasons. As for fixing mistakes, you may reach me by going to the Contact Page on Eigo Ganbare.
Does Eigo Ganbare have digital textbooks that I could use for my ES/JHS classroom teaching? How about the Eiken resources?
Eigo Ganbare discourages ALTs to have a boot copy of official textbooks. A licensed copy should be distributed for each teacher and this includes the ALT. If you do not have what you need, please ask your school to order them for you. As for the Eiken resources, they have all been taken out and replaced with an alternative that has less emphasis on examinations. If Eiken is still a necessity, please ask your school to order some for you. Furthermore, Eigo Ganbare strongly encourages your school to set a budget (or apply for a grant), so JTEs and ALTs can purchase team-teaching and English-related teaching materials.
How do I connect Japanese public school's English classes with schools from abroad?
Check out J-LEAP via Japan Foundation and other similar organizations from your home country. Contact the teachers (or Japanese Language Teachers) there to see if they're interested in an "old-school" pen pal project and provide necessary documents that permit both schools to have an affiliate connection, including a safe and a secured environment for JHS/HS students. Moreover, check out Global Classmates for high schools equipped with classroom technology.
The Pen Pal Project started by the creator of Eigo Ganbare: Hirakata JHS (2012 to 2015) <=> Juanita HS (2012 to 2015) / R.L. Stevenson Middle School (2012/13・No Japanese classes) / Garfield HS (2013 to 2015) | Nakano JHS (gap year・2016/17) <=> Garfield HS (gap year・2016/17) | Mikuni JHS (2017/18) <=> Juanita HS (2017/18) / Garfield HS (2017/18) / Presidio Middle School (2017/18) | Seiryo JHS (2018 to 2020) <=> Presidio Middle School (2018 to 2020) | Seiryo HS (gap year・2019/20) <=> Garfield HS (gap year・2019/20) Note: Mikuni JHS was the only school in Japan that was "strongly against" this project, but it's the only one that had three schools from abroad to help these JTEs to understand its educational merit for their students.
How can I support ALT content creators?
To diversify the classroom team-teaching and have something that integrates with the MEXT textbooks, you can use resource websites created by altruistic non-business ALTs, like mine (Eigo Ganbare), ALTopedia, A Fox in Japan, and a few others. Then, there are shareable cloud drives that contain worksheets from the JET and non-JET ALTs!
Whether you want to financially support ALT content creators, so they can stay afloat, are entirely up to you. Even other alternatives, like offering a helping hand once in a while!
How can I communicate with JET ALTs, direct hire ALTs, and dispatch ALTs?
There’s the r/ALTinginJapan on Reddit. It's an ALT subreddit community that supports one another, discuss ALT-related topics, and strives to improve their working conditions in Japan. If there's ever any legal concerns, one of the mods can provide initial support and through proper channels, assist in networking to get those issues resolve in a timely manner. As for the other mods, the ALT content creators, they are/were just like you. We can all collaborate as a team and do a lot more in widening the positive aspects of cultural diversity into Japanese public schools. Not just teaching English communication!
Furthermore, there are r/JETProgramme and r/teachinginjapan. You may want to look into other groups on Facebook too! On Instagram, there's JETprep and for details about it, please contact u/MariaCactus on Reddit.
How can I further my professional development skills with 21st century education and apply/introduce them into Japanese schools?
Check out the online courses on Microsoft Innovative Educator program, Google Teacher program, and Apple Teacher program. Quizzes are included in that you can earn recognization badges and certifications. There’s even a chance to earn badges on Kahoot!
If you like to advocate team-teaching technological classroom merits, receive in-school resource privileges for ALTs, and among other ideas, please share those to Daniel Yoshimoto. A politician who strives to make a difference in Japanese schools and listens to the voices from the foreign community in Japan!
What is the purpose of having JLPT/Japanese language courses for ALTs?
The Eigo Ganbare: JLPT courses exist to provide ALTs with Japanese language support, so they can have better communication with their Japanese colleagues in their workplace and utilize their time management in ALT meetings. All courses have audio to help increase their motivation and myself included.
If you know Michio Tsutsui, the author of "A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar", "A Dictionary of Intermediate Japanese Grammar" and "A Dictionary of Advanced Japanese Grammar", he just happened to be the former director of the University of Washington: Technical Japanese Program. And, this is where I had my paid internship in Kobe, Japan!
Can I get the data copy of these JLPT/Japanese language courses?
No. Eigo Ganbare has worked on all five JLPT levels with audio features for grammar, vocabulary, and so on. Each word, sentence, and audio were individually uploaded. As a reminder and please think about it that Memrise do not let any courses to be duplicated. If you like to collaborate, I'm currently using these for my own Japanese studies too, but I can't spot every mistakes. So, informing mistakes to be fixed on these existing courses are one of the best ways to show your contribution for current and future ALTs. You may reach me by going to the Contact Page on Eigo Ganbare to report those mistakes.
What is the reality of ALTing?
Choose wisely! Go for the JET programme or any government sister-city ALT programs as your first option. Dire hire is also another opportunity to receive direct supervision from the board of education/schools. Other routes that aren't necessary teaching in Japan is to seek paid internships through reliable and trustworthy organizations, like JETRO. An internship in which both parties can benefit from each other.
JET/direct hire + paid English teaching side gigs?? Perhaps, a more rewarding mutual experience is to instead get involve with the Japanese community while maintaining a connection with your foreign peers.