Tomoko from Nagano
Tomoko has an extensive background in teaching, being a teacher since her graduation in 2000 w/ her bachelor’s degree in Education. She moved to NYC soon afterwards to pursue her passion for bilingual teaching and cross cultural communication. She has a wide variety of teaching experiences from working as a private tutor for the Japanese language, to being a head teacher for private school, a summer camp, learning centers, and others.
On a personal level Tomoko is pleasant and fun and enjoys challenging her students. She comes from the prefecture Nagano which has beautiful nature, along with “great apples and soba noodles.” She has a passion for playing the piano but also enjoys watching movies, going to museums, etc.
“My Japanese lessons always contain practice for reading, writing, and speaking. I choose materials related with Japanese culture and history, so my students can understand not only the Japanese Language but also Japan itself. I strongly believe that anyone who can see and feel the beauty of the Japanese Language and culture can improve their language ability. Let’s expand your possibilities both professionally and personally by learning Japanese.”
Once Sayoko was a writer and editor in Japan for 5 years after she graduated from college. She then acquired a certified license as a Japanese teacher for Japanese people. But unsatisfied, she came to New York City to teach others Japanese instead.
Sayoko is very dedicated, and has been teaching for more than 10 years. Most of her students are employees who work for Japanese companies in the US. Her lessons are not only for learning Japanese, but also about knowing various Japanese culture and manners. She was also an experienced teacher for kids in NYC public schools for 5 years, and also has a certificate for teaching Japanese from Japan Society.
Mariko feels that when her students enjoy learning, they learn best. She can both be very pleasant and very strict with her students to make sure they learn the most possible for their time. Her lessons are unique, and she hopes she’ll be able to inspire students to continue their studies of the Japanese language for an extended period of time.
“I would really like my students to understand Japanese the easy and practical way. Learning a new language is like cooking! You can’t make a meal if you just read a cooking book. Leave your books at home and come learn Japanese with me! It will be really fun.”
Yuka is truly a “Sensei”, with the credentials to prove it. She has a PhD in Sociolinguistics from an American university. She’s one of our more distinguished teachers, with multiple years of Japanese teaching experience to both advanced and beginner levels of students. She also has professional experiences as assistant to the CEO of a Japanese company, and understands well both the academic and professional applications of the Japanese language. Yuka’s in depth knowledge of teaching and curriculums makes her a valuable asset to both Hills Learning and her students.
Yuka is both a professional and friendly teacher. Although her lessons might be challenging for some students, they’re usually very effective. She’s a very outgoing and reliable person, and she currently enjoys cooking when not teaching.
“I have two overarching goals when teaching: to teach language in authentic contexts, and to provide a nurturing, supportive atmosphere outside and inside the classroom. I especially find it rewarding to observe students’ accomplishments during years of rigorous Japanese language study as they grow in their understanding of Japanese society and culture. In return for their hard work, I believe it is my responsibility to teach them to use Japanese in realistic Japanese contexts, so that they can acquire an understanding of the meaning of language in Japanese society.”
Kaori the Japanese Classical Dancer
Kaori has over five years experience performing and sometimes teaching classical Japanese dance in New York City. She recently graduated with an M.A. in Theatre from Hunter College, CUNY. Her thesis, over 130 pages, is in both English and Japanese. Through this thesis and her studies for her master’s degree she has developed a keen sense of the differences between the English and Japanese languages, and is passionate about teaching those differences to her students.
Kaori’s long list of venues that she’s performed at include the Japan Arts Festival, White Plains and Long Island Cherry Blossom Festivals, and Universal Peace Day in Central Park. She is both a very creative and friendly person, and brings her energy for the arts to her Japanese lessons. She has multiple years experience as a personal tutor in the Japanese language.
“I’m not only about teaching language, but about introducing Japanese culture and history to my students. In the greater NY area, I have 5 years of experience introducing Japanese culture and history through Japanese traditional dance and singing activities. I want to work with my students to develop the right language curriculum for them.”