Archive for September, 2011

College is busy. True or false? DEFINITELY true (at least on my part it is)

So! Yes, I do realize that I haven’t posted in a month. But during that one month of being gone, I have semi-settled into my room(even though it’s been like three weeks after moving in), safely registered for my classes, BEGAN class, finished the Bakayama initiation, made friends, joined smooth steppers, thought about joining more clubs (probably won’t xD), and much much much MUCH more. In this post, I want to write about some of the classes I have, a bit about my dorm, and a tiny bit about Smooth Steppers.
So let’s begin this post with my class schedule. I am currently taking the recommended amount (they also said it was the average) of 13 1/3 credits. Why 1/3? I’ll get to that later. So my week looks pretty much like this….

Yes, I MIRACULOUSLY have NO classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays!! Although my Mondays are a killer, the number of classes I have decrease as the week goes by, so I’m very satisfied with my classes.
My period 1 class is College Composition, which is a class that teaches you how to write and get the best out of college. If you already know how to write or have taken a “how to study in college” kind of course, you may or may not want to take it. I have a friend who has taken a similar course, and he said that it’s kind of a waste of time. However, I’m really enjoying this course (except for the fact that it’s a period 1 course…) and I’m getting a lot out of my teacher (Michael Kleindl). Currently, we’re learning how to critically analyze papers and I think we’re going into an argumentation unit soon.
Next is my oh so horrendous (but I’ve got to admit, probably will be useful in my future) JLP (Japanese Language Program) class. No September student can escape from this class if you’re not a OYR (One year Regular) student (actually I’m not sure how that works) OR if you’re told that you’re exempt from taking it after taking the placement exam. There’s three(?) general groupings in JLP – Group 1: people who’s NEVER studied Japanese before, Group 2: people who’s studied some Japanese, but Japanese isn’t their first language, and Group 3: people who knows how to write and speak in Japanese but maybe doesn’t know how to read, or something along those lines. Then from there, there are more specific groupings like Special Japanese A, which is the class I ended up being in. First of all, Special Japanese A does NOT mean that I’m in the best of the Special Japanese classes, because that would be the Special Japanese C guys. So that means I’m on the bottom of the Special Japanese classes. Basically, we have two textbooks and teachers, one for learning to write Kanji and the other for learning how to read. We pretty much have quizzes everyday, and depending on the day of the week, it varies from the reading quiz and the writing quiz. The kanji on the reading quizzes are based off of newspaper articles our teacher gives us, and she chooses 20 Kanjis from the article for us to be quizzed on. We simply need to know how to read it, so next to the Kanji, we just have to write how to read it in Hiragana. The writing quiz on the other hand… we get our words from the “textbook” which looks more like a flappy notebook. Before class, we have to write down 60 kanjis (and the sentence that goes with it…) and we are quizzed on 20 from that set. So JLP is hell for all the September students. (April students have ELP btw, which is the English version of hell :D)
Pd 3. I’ll keep it short. I have the Linguistics class from Moriya sensei. She’s a really interesting tiny lady that likes to move around a lot during her lectures. But aside from that, she’s REALLY interesting to listen to, and I’m really enjoying her class (along with my friend who feels the same way). We are currently studying how the English language developed, like how they borrowed words from other countries such as pizza, zero, etc. So if you want to go into linguistics or Language Ed, I highly recommend this class.
Now I’ll explain the “1/3” credit thing. At ICU, they require us to take 2 credits of exercise PE courses and lecture courses each. So by making the exercise courses worth 1/3 credit, it allows us to explore different kinds of sports and what not. In simple terms, we have to take 2 years of exercise credits (since we can’t take more than one per semester) and take 2 classes of lecture, which are Health Education and Sports Science.
Gosh this is getting long. I wanted to finish this in like, 15 minutes and go to sleep… but whatever. My fault. But I’m on my last class called Society and Culture. This is probably the hardest class to stay awake in, since it’s a “gorochi” (literally means five six seven put together) class. However, last class (I’ve only had this class twice so far) we had a group discussion about why the Japanese culture today is how it is now. We got into a fairly deep discussion, mentioning things like, the acquisition of Japanese culture develops from the family, and in order to be a “real” Japanese, you must grow up from a Japanese family, and etc etc.
So that was a “quick” overview of my classes right nowwwwwww….

So next I said I’d write about my dorm… hmm it’s fun! I’m in the Keyaki “jail”, but I’m really enjoying this dorm (maybe because I don’t drink or go out clubbing and what not… ^^;). As you might know, there was a strict curfew that locked students out of the dorm if they were one minute late after the 11:00 curfew. Now, there still is a curfew, but it is now at 11:30, and you can still come in even after it passed (but you shouldn’t since you’d be troubling the dorm manager) (they’re really nice people!!). You just can’t go out after 11:30, which I think is pretty fair. As long as you fill out a form saying where you’ll be staying and what not, you can always go out to a friend’s house to sleepover and whatever. I heard of some people that go all night karaoke too (craaaazy people xD)

So I’ll leave it at that for the dorm for now… And I’ll move on to clubs! I joined one club for now called the Smooth Steppers. It’s a really popular dance club, and they didn’t even have like ads to draw new students in. They automatically had people coming in, and that’s just how popular they are. Their performances are always amazing, and of course, in order to be amazing, they practice a ****ton. For now, I have practices coming up on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays, but once the ICU Festival comes closer, I’m sure there’ll be more practices. There’s several genres within the club which include…. Hip hop, Break dance, Contemporary, Girls, Lockin’, Popping, Punkin’, and I think that’s it. If you search those up on youtube, or search smooth steppers icu, I’m sure you can grasp the idea of what it is. I’m also going to join Soran Bushi, or Soul Run, and since those practices are during lunch, I’m pretty sure practices won’t clash (thank god) ^^. But advice to you all, don’t take too much… FOCUS ON SCHOOL!! I better tell myself that too…

So (I use so way too much…) I’ll end today’s post here for now… this took like 40 minutes instead of the 15 minutes I was originally planning… but whatevers, I missed an entire month so I suppose it’s fair. Oh, the weather is finally starting to feel like Autumn! Couple days ago, I was going out in a t-shirt, shorts, etc., but like, after a day (not even kidding), it got INSANELY cold at once, and I would go out in a long sleeve shirt, jacket, skinny jeans, shoes, scarf, etc. Well, it’s probably because I’m not good with the cold, but yeah. Weather change is FAST. Ok~ I’m done!!!!!!!!!

Thanks for reading my insanely long post…. 1366 words. CRAZY.