Cassie Rodriguez: Klexon

The CIP I have chosen this semester is a circle dedicated to helping Japanese people improve their English skills. Most of the people who participate come from a wide variety of backgrounds, and I have been able to talk with college students my age, people interested in living or working abroad, people who study English just as a hobby, and even a member of Japan’s Self Defense Forces. One of the most rewarding things about participating in this circle is that you have the opportunity to meet people who understand exactly what it is like to study a difficult foreign language, so communication is not that difficult as we share similar experiences. Sometimes, depending on the level of English that my conversation partner has, I often offer explanations in Japanese, which helps both my language skills and helps deepen the understanding of my conversation partner.

Because KCJS students are required to keep a CIP log and come up with small tasks for ourselves, I feel like participating in this circle has been really useful. For example, each week I set a goal for myself to participate in activities outside of the circle so I would be able to practice my Japanese and also make new friends. Each week I gave myself a small goal to complete that eventually led to me hanging out with some of the friends I made in the circle “outside of class,” so to speak. Funnily enough, even though many of the Japanese people try hard to practice English, most of the time outside of the circle we only speak Japanese, which has been actually really good practice. All in all, I’m glad that I have been able to participate in this circle because it has helped me accomplish my primary goal that I set before starting the KCJS program: becoming more comfortable with expressing myself in Japanese.

2 thoughts on “Cassie Rodriguez: Klexon

  1. I’m glad you had a great time Cassie! It’s so interesting that you met someone from the Self Defense Forces. It must have been insightful for your research back in Princeton.

    • Thank you, Allison! It actually was super useful and relevant not only to my independent work but also for my classes here at KCJS!