Preschool teacher needed in west Tokyo

Posting this here so I can point more people to it. West Tokyo Preschool is a small English-language preschool in Fuchu, near the American School in Japan. In sort of an emergency for the place, the teacher who was doing a solid job for the past year or two suddenly decided that she would be working elsewhere; a new teacher is needed for the school year beginning this fall. (It runs on the American calendar, since many of its pupils are kids of faculty at ASIJ.)

This is also sort of an emergency for my own family, since this is where we are hoping to send our oldest son starting this year. (The daughter went here when she was preschool age as well.)

Pasting the job details below. Please feel free to share this with anyone who might be qualified, interested, and in the area.

Wanted: Native English Teacher – Preschool

West Tokyo Preschool, located in western Tokyo on the Seibu Tamagawa line beginning at Musashi Sakai, is a small, private preschool seeking a native English speaker to start on September 1, 2017.

Candidate must:

  • Be a native English speaker
  • Have early learning qualification or equivalent
  • Have experience teaching children

The successful candidate will work Monday–Friday, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. Vacation is 3 weeks at Christmas, 1 week in spring, and the summer vacation of July and August (if interested can run summer school program).

  • Salary starts at ¥250,000 per month of the school calendar, September to June
  • Transportation provided
  • Health insurance ¥10,000 per month
  • Visa sponsorship available

About WTPS

This is a small international preschool of 3–5 year old children from various places, limited to 18 children. We expect and encourage the children to use only English in the classroom, as some of them will go on to international school. The curriculum is created by the teacher, and is flexible, generally incorporating phonics lessons. There many resources available at the school for lessons/planning, and a large selection of storybooks and games. The students have recess daily.

About the position

The working hours are from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm Monday–Friday. Lunch is eaten at the school; the students bring their own lunches from home. There are a few field trips throughout the year, a Halloween and Christmas performance, and a Carnival every year. The instructor will not be expected to work weekends. Additionally, the instructor will have off 3 weeks in winter and 1 week in spring, paid. Summer holiday is 2 full months (July and August), following the international school calendar. These months are not contracted so teachers are welcome to visit their home country, travel, sign up for a summer school program (there is one located very close to the preschool), or run a short summer program at the preschool.

Transportation and income are compensated.

The academic year is from September to the end of June every year. A contract can be given for 1–2 school years or more. Visa sponsorship is available for candidates who are eligible for either an Instructor or Humanities/International Services Visa in Japan.

Please contact the school at with an up-to-date resume, photo, and a brief cover letter explaining your relevant teaching experiences and interest.

Wanna Translate a Book?

The money involved in this project is not at all in line with the effort it will involve, but there might be someone out there who wants to get his or her name on a published translation and has the free time to make it happen. Forwarded from the JAT mailing list:

* * *

A book project, Easy Subjects, seeks a native American-English translator for a Japanese novel, Hishoku by Sawako Ariyoshi. This position is ideal for translators who are in the beginning stage of their career and wish to publish his/her own work. Graduate students are also considered.

The novel Hishoku was published in Japan in 1967. Ideally the translator would be able to convey the defiant voice of the protagonist who is keenly and theoretically critical of the US racial hierarchy in the 1950s, and also be able to delineate the different voices of the characters who are from multiple class, racial, and cultural groups in New York City. Finally the translator must be able to convey the literary voice and craft of Sawako Ariyoshi in this particular novel. The translation of this novel will be included in a book entitled Easy Subjects. This book deploys postcolonial gender studies and cultural studies to critique the US academia’s attachment to female minority subjects. The copyright of the book has already been secured.

The translation will be published by an academic press as part of the book. The novel translation will be one of the chapters. If the translator wishes, the book can also include the translator’s note or comments following the novel.

The translator is rewarded with a total stipend of US $2,000. The translator will receive $1,000 at the time of completion and submission of the translation manuscript, and $1,000 at the time of the book publication.

Timeline: The manuscript must be completed by the winter of 2014. Selection of the translator will be made by May 2014.

Selection process: Send your CV and contact information with a short sample of your work (no longer than 5 pages, preferably with the original Japanese manuscript) if you have any, to Dr. Yurika Tamura via email: by April 10, 2014. The detail of the project and publication with a sample page of the novel (2–3 pages) will then be sent to suitable candidates. After a review of the sample work, selected candidates will be contacted for a Skype interview and notified of the result of selection.

Should you have any inquiry, contact Dr. Tamura ( via email.

Random Wednesday Journalism Rant

I’m fascinated by the disappearance of the Malaysian airplane. All this communications technology onboard the thing, and nobody has been able to use that to pinpoint the place where we can find it now. So strange. Such fertile ground for talk of terror, or war, or other exciting reasons for 200+ people to vanish from the sky in their flying metal tube.

This was refreshing to read, though. From “Cutting Through the Bullshit Surrounding Flight MH370”:

Sprawling news organizations struggle to feed 24-hour news channels and constantly updated blogs with the meager rations available—each morsel is sniffed and inspected and toyed with hour after hour until every last drop of flavor has been extracted. And when the facts run out, you can always rely on the efforts of experts cum storytellers, who will be happy to spin yarns from the thinnest and most fragile of threads in exchange for a bit of exposure.

Such a great quote. A solid article, too, and worth reading in its whole. But it’s a shame that it had to come from a publication that not even a week ago also published this account of a visit to the town of Tomioka, six kilometers south of Fukushima Daiichi. Matsumura Naoto, one of the very few people still in the town, talks about the ongoing operation to remove fuel rods from a storage pool at the stricken nuclear plant:

“If they screw up, we’re all in big trouble. I imagine they’ll put the fuel in containers inside the pool and then pull those out. If they drop one of those and there’s a leak, then everyone here’ll be dead from radiation exposure”

Everyone. Dead. Now this is just a quote from a justifiable angry local resident, so I cannot come down hard on this guy for what he has to say. But Vice, on the other hand, lets us know where the death could come from: “One of the dangers of a broken fuel rod at this point would be a very sudden release of krypton-85, a cancer-causing isotope in the local vicinity.” 85Kr is a beta emitter with a half-life of about 10.8 years. Scary stuff to be sure, but the article doesn’t provide the details of how it is going to travel the six kilometers to Tomioka to kill all the residents.

Or, for that matter, the details on how they have managed to survive so far. Numbers listed in this Wikipedia article state that 180 PBq of 85Kr made its way into the global atmosphere from warhead tests last century, and another 180 PBq or so from Chernobyl. Totally vaporizing every single fuel rod at Fukushima Daiichi and blowing that into the air would probably add a similar amount once again. This is not the likely outcome of “a broken fuel rod,” though.

Tomioka lost 256 residents to the quake and tsunami—1.6% of the town’s population. No word yet on how many Tomioka people have succumbed to radiation poisoning. But I don’t think Vice will be reporting on that anytime soon.