Please prepare a 4-5 minute speech on two of the following topics (please note that we may not have time for everyone to present both speeches, however, please do try to prepare two):
1) The Image of Japan in the World. Changing demographics, historical controversies, whaling-;in many areas of the world, anti-Japanese sentiment seems to be rising, even as Japan’s economic might shows signs of waning. What are your impressions of how Japan is viewed by others? How do you think Japan’s image might be enhanced? Do you believe Japanese are well understood abroad? If not, what can be done by the government, by individuals, by you yourself, by us, your listeners?
2) English Education in Japan. Armies of well-intentioned and highly-capable people have struggled for decades to help Japanese citizens acquire English more easily…yet the language barrier still remains a serious problem. Why do you think this is so? What has been your experience? What have other nations done? What do you think government, society, schools, and other organizations could do to help? Should English be taught in a different way? Should English be made the official language in companies? What else do you think can and should be done?
3) The Future of Employment. Automation is changing the way people work, and it is said that many of the jobs we see today will cease to exist in a few decades. The average age of the population in Malaysia is 27, in the U.S., 37, and in Japan, 47. How do you think such demographics will affect the future labor market? Will immigration help or should it be kept low? Can women truly be expected to play an important role in the working world in Japan? What about the future of younger people, who find it increasingly difficult to find secure employment? What about older employees, who must continue to work longer as their social security benefits dwindle? What are your thoughts about this situation? What is happening in the world, in Japan, in your own life and those of the people around you? What can and should government and individuals do to help remedy this situation? What are your own personal survival strategies?
4) Any other current event topic-;ISIS and the possibility of terrorist acts occurring in Japan, the upcoming U.S. presidential election; Constitutional revision, the growing nationalistic feelings in countries throughout the world---any topic that is of interest to you.
5) A person I greatly admire, and why. (Even in times of anxiety, we still have heroes! A historical figure, a fictional hero, a favorite athlete, your parents? Please explain in detail, speak from your heart, perhaps even embellish (for dramatic effect!). Your goal is not to simply TELL us why you admire that person, but to touch our emotions, so that we can feel something of that admiration as well!
6) The most memorable day in my life, and why. (What an interesting topic this could be! An extraordinary day, an event, an encounter, an afternoon spent with someone special---something that has stayed with you and will probably be a part of you for the rest of your life. An incredibly happy day, or a tragic one that has taught you some valuable lesson about life-we would love to hear about it.)
7) Any other personal topic that you feel strongly about, are fascinated by, or that you constantly find yourself thinking about (some issue, or question about life that is always on your mind….) and would like to share with us. It can be funny or sad or perplexing or frightening…we would love to hear an intriguing story!
Please remember that a good speech is composed of three parts:
1. A Strong Beginning (hopefully something that you have thought about and rehearsed, for effect)
2. A Middle (perhaps focusing on 3-5 points, where you can speak freely and in depth, and not worry about getting lost from time to time…) which leads to:
3. A Memorable Ending (please think a bit about the last words you will say to us). If the beginning and ending are strong, then everything in-between can be forgiven, so please enjoy!
You may use notes (outlines are best), but please do not “read” us your speech. I look forward to a wonderful day of presentations!
高松 珠子 講師
サイマル・アカデミー 東京校 地図