Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Urashima Taro and the Farewell Speech

I have been a teacher for 50 years. Half of those years have been at this Palace of Economics.
I feel a little like Urashima Taro.
I came here in 1990. It seems like yesterday.

One day, I met a professor who said, “I’m working at a great place, the Palace of Economics. Shall I introduce you?”
At the Palace of Economics, professors asked me, “Why do you have an interest in coming here?”
“Well, I like economics. The ideas of Adam Smith, John Maynard Keynes and Milton Friedman, and in management theory, Peter Drucker and his sense of history.

Also, I have been reading The Economist every week since 1982. In 1990, Margaret Thatcher was often on the cover.

The Economist has a good variety of information.
Not just economics.
For example, recently, there was an interesting article “How to Make a Good Teacher.”

Among the several main points of the article were:
Feedback to the students, 90% effective.
Develop students’ metacognitive strategies, 80% effective.
Employ peer tutoring, 60% effective.

I incorporated these ideas my teaching approach.

Students sometimes asked me questions. This is Japan so it was “sometimes”.

For example, “Why did you become a teacher?”
I like to help people. Helping makes you feel good. A win-win arrangement. Not zero-sum.

“Why did you come to Japan?”
This is the “S” answer. Not just sushi, sashimi and sake.
Japan is a sophisticated, secure, sincere country.
Japan is a place I can regard as a home.

“What will you do in the future? “
I believe in two important concepts to a satisfying life: a sense of identity and sense of community.”
And every week I will read The Economist. As usual, I will always open it to the back page first. There you can find an obituary. The life of a famous person is summarized. Always well-written and inspirational.

When he left the Palace of the Sea King, Urashima Taro was given a box. He was told he must never open it.

But he went back to his home country, and opened the box and white smoke came out…  He became VERY OLD.

One possible moral for the Urashima Taro story is that after a person has left his homeland, he will change and his homeland will also change. Return is a challenge.

So perhaps, for a little while, I will stay here in Japan, to avoid the white smoke…
Thank you very much to everyone for a treasured experience in the Palace of Economics!

Delivered as follows in Japanese:
ある日、ある教授と合って、「私が素晴らしい所でPalace of Economics働いています。経済宮殿に紹介しましょう」と言いました。
「さあ、経済学を好きですね。Adam Smith, John Maynard Keynes, Milton Friedman と経営学者Peter Druckerの思想を好きです、特にDrucker歴史のセンス。
又、毎週1982年からThe Economistと言おう新聞を読み続けていました。」
1990で、Margaret Thatcherは、表紙によく乗っていました。

The Economistは色な情報がはいています。経済学だけじゃなくて。例えば、最近、面白い記事がありました。「いい教員になるとは?」
ピア・チュータリング を利用する70%効果。

例えば、「なぜ教員になりましたか」人と助け合いを好きです。助け合うと気持ちよくする。 A win-win (勝つ)状況。


毎週The Economistを読むつもりです。いつも最初の読む記事が最後ページにあります。それは死亡記事ページです。有名人の人生は要約されています。いつも、よく書かれて、インスピレーションです。




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