As I said before, language is my thing– teaching it, helping other people teach it, and getting students to learn it. So, I’ve written several textbooks over the last ten years to help teachers help their students.


The ESL “conversation strategies” textbooks

Nice Talking with You (2-level series) is used by ESL teachers internationally. I developed it while I was teaching at Nanzan University in the 90′s. I noticed that Japanese students had enough knowledge of vocabulary and grammatical structures to have a conversation, but they lacked the phrases they needed to react in English, fix communication problems, and keep a conversation going.
I figured out that when those phrases (termed “conversation strategies”) were placed at the forefront of instruction, rather than on the sidelines, students really picked them up fast, and that made a big difference in their performance and attitude, a bigger difference than if they were made to do grammar exercises or practice memorized dialogues.

Nice talking with you(レベル2) は世界中でESLの先生方によって使用されています。私はこのテキストを自身が1990年代に南山大学に勤務中に製作しました。私はその時、日本人の学生は英語で会話をするにおいての単語力や文法力は取得しているにもかかわらず、英語を話すためのフレーズや文を生み出す力、会話の組み立て方、会話を持続させる力が欠けている事に気づきました。そこで私は、もしそれらのフレーズが学生が学ぶ上でサイドラインではなく中心的に表記されていれば、より早く身につき、またそれが手助けとなり学生にとって文法練習やただ教科書の文章を暗記するよりもはるかに大きな成果が得られる事がわかりました。

I was thrilled that Nice Talking with You was picked up by high schools and universities all over Japan. And now with the expertise of Cambridge University Press, we’re excited about getting the text into the hands of teachers throughout Asia so they can help their students enjoy speaking English too.

私はNice talking with youが日本中の高校や大学で使用されるのではとワクワクしました。そして現在、エキスパートであるケインブリッジ出版社と共にアジア中でこのテキストが出回り、学生が英会話を楽しんでくれることを楽しみにしています。

Now, Nice Talking with You is available in China, co-published by Beijing Language & Culture University Press!

Level 2
NTwY1 Chinese ed
Chinese edition, Level 1

Textbooks for the ESL classroom

Listening Advantage is a 4-level ESL text series which focuses on content-based listening and improving speaking skills. Every unit has monologues, dialogues, an extended conversation/lecture, and pronunciation listening practice. Content is the key word here. The series covers nearly 50 topics, including advertising, water resources, fashion, the future of travel, celebrities, employment issues, and a bunch of others.

Listening Advantageはhレベル4のテキストシリーズで、リスニング力とスピーキング力向上を目的として製作されたものです。各章にはモノローグ、ダイアログ、長めの会話文、講義、そして発音の聞き取り練習が含まれています。”満足感”がここでのキーワードです。このシリーズには、広告、水資源、ファッション、将来の旅行像、セレブリティ、雇用問題などを含む50エピソードが掲載さています。

Speaking & Listening ESL text series

In the world of ESL textbooks, most of the audio is pretty dry. It’s scripted, performed by North American voice actors, and it doesn’t sound natural…sounds like someone’s reading a script and being ultra-careful with their articulation. And they are.


So, when I got a chance to do my textbooks, I went all out: I included British and Australian accents, made some dialogs scripted and some unscripted, added funny character voices, various North American dialects, allowed overlaps and so forth. Teachers tell me it’s a refreshing and truly unique sound. That’s satisfying.