If you are a parent educating your child in the Japanese School system supplementing English reading and writing at home can be a challenge. There are numerous English language schools in Japan so it`s difficult to find the best English Language school for your child. Here are classes that we have tested where the majority of students speak English, and are great for making friends. Most cater to returness or to families with one or both English speaking parent(s) and won`t break the pocket book.
Do you have one to recommend. Please leave a comment below.
Yoyogi Chapters was founded over 10 years ago by a small group of parents interested in promoting English literacy in their children. Lessons are held on Saturday mornings with international school teachers or teachers with years of teaching experience. Prerequisite – One parent must be able to communicate in English (all communication is in English) and the child(ren) must be able to speak some level of English. There are prerequisites in terms of reading and writing ability for our higher level classes.
Yoyogi Chapters Classes:
Busybees (around 4-5 years old): Ability to recognize alphabet letters. Comfortable joining the class on their own.
Honeybees (5-7 years old): Ability to recognize upper and lowercase alphabet letters, familiarity with phonics and reading & spelling simple words.
Cubs (6-8 years old): Ability to read a simple picture book (like Cat in the Hat), possibly with some help.
Bears (ages 8-9): Ability to read easy/beginner chapter books such as Flat Stanley or Nate the Great.
Bookworms (currently ages 9-12): Ability to write basic paragraphs & read chapter books (various levels).
Plus Alphas (planned for ages 11+ to teens): Ability to express an idea in a paragraph & read a basic chapter book (possibly with the aid of writing/reading devices/apps), and to want to discuss different points of view with peers.
Yoyogi Chapters Details:
Cost: Approximate semester cost 18,000-20,000 JPY (between 10 and 12 classes per semester)
Dates: Saturday mornings
Address: Yoyogi Furiai Kaikan 1-37-10 Yoyogi, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo.
Access: Less than a 5 minute walk from Yoyogi Station on the JR, Sobu and Uedo lines or less than a 7 minute walk from Minami Shinjuku on the Odakyu line.
Shinjuku Chapter is a cooperative of parents of early elementary school-aged children in Tokyo. The children in the group range from being passively to completely bilingual (Japanese/English) and most have one Japanese and one native English-speaking parent. Currently, Shinjuku Chapters has three teacher-led classes:
1) 5 – 6 year olds (last year in Japanese kindergarten)
2) 7 – 9 year olds (3rd or 4th grade)
3) 10-12 year olds (5th or 6th grade in Japanese primary school)
Shinjuku Chapters has a strict no Japanese in class policy, children joining classes must be at least passively bilingual (i.e.) they must at least understand English even if they are not yet speaking it fluently. *Due to venue requirements, children residing in the Nakano wards are given priority for enrollment in classes.
Shinjuku Chapters Details:
Cost: Approximate semester cost 14,000-17,500 JPY (10 classes per semester)
Dates: Sunday mornings
Address: Kumin Katsudo Centre 5-27-5 Higashi Nakano, Nakano-ku, Tokyo
Access: 7 minutes on foot from Ochiai Station on the Tozai Line or 11 minutes on foot from Higashi Nakano on the JR Sobu Line
Contact: Stephanie Wilson
International After Schools:
Kikokushijo Academy (Website in Japanese) – KA is an international after school with locations in Tokyo, Kanagawa & Chiba. KA provides highly academic English education that caters to returnees. Your child must be able to communicate in English in order to join. Kids benefit from and can relate to being with other English speaking kids going to Japanese school.
K Space – Kspace an international school based in Shirokane, Tokyo.
They hold a preschool & kindergarten and offers a range of extra-curricula programmes designed to support children aged 3 months to 11 years old.
Best Living Japan Kids` Cooking Classes – Minami Azabu, Tokyo
Our elementary school kids cooking classes teach your kids kitchen safety, about interesting and yummy ingredients and cooking techniques. Don’t be surprised to see them eating things that you’ve never fed them, or trying things they have previously disliked! All classes are held in English at the Best Living Japan Studio in Minami Azabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo – a professional and insured kitchen.
Elementary school kids cooking classes are for ages 6-12 years (1st – 6th grade). Eight weeks of lessons are offered, and you can sign-up your child for three or six of the lessons. One set of three lessons is 10,000 yen + 8% tax. 1st – 3rd graders are from 16:00-17:30, and 4th – 6th graders are 18:00-19:30.
English Language Apps for the Home:
Reading Eggs’ educational apps are designed by experts to promote real learning on the go. Their colourful and interactive learning apps teach phonics, spelling, vocabulary, maths, sight words and more – and they’re so much fun!
Starfall has been teaching children to read with phonics for well over a decade. Their systematic approach is perfect for preschool, kindergarten, first grade, second grade, special education, homeschool, and English language development (ELD, ELL, ESL). Starfall is an educational alternative to other entertainment choices for children.
The Hooked on Phonics Program uses over 200+ music videos, stories, exercises, and interactive games as a total, comprehensive reading program to keep kids interested and motivated on each lesson.
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