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[YRP Students' Essays] My Goal in English

Think about it: a stroke of good luck can change one's life. It is hard to imagine, but that is what exactly happened to me eight years ago. Because of that, I spent my elementary school days in America and learned English. To make the most of my experience, I want to find a job that uses English in the future. My English has not made that much progress in the last few years since coming back to Japan, so this year's goal is to improve my English skills more than ever, especially my writing and vocabulary.

The precise trigger of my learning English was a move to America due to my father's work. At that time, I was in a complicated situation, which was probably hard to understand for a five-year-old child. During my six-year stay in America, my English developed, especially from watching T.V. and reading books. Also, my friends and teachers were a big factor. The biggest motivation to learn English was that English was necessary to survive the severe situation I was in. Just like that, my English progressed rapidly as I was able to graduate from ESL in second grade and reached grade level in fourth grade. After coming back to Japan, I noticed that my English ability, which took me six years to gain, was starting to decline dramatically. My mind was full of disappointment and frustration at that time. However, the existence of DIVE helped me keep my English level, and I was able to move on to Doshisha International Middle School.

Since then, my English has made little progress because in Japan we don't use English in everyday conversation. If English is going to be part of my future, progress in my English is required even though it is very hard to accomplish. The most basic action to start right now is to read higher-level books to absorb an advanced vocabulary. In addition to that, my Japanese ability needs more improvement. Also, expanding my knowledge about the world, such as news of various events happening around the world, is indispensable. Yet, the most important thing is to achieve the heart to study, including listening to people, concentrating on something, and to form and hold your own opinion.

When I consider my own future, my current English skills are presumably not sufficient. To make them useful, daily effort is needed. I don't have a definite dream to use my English yet, but before graduating middle school, my short-term goal is to obtain 1st grade in EIKEN (English proficiency exam in Japan) and get more than 600 on the TOEFL test in October. Also, to improve my writing and vocabulary and to make my English skills higher than my grade level again is an essential long-term goal. To achieve that the simplest thing I can do is to study steadily and hard. It is probably not too late to find my dream using English yet, so I would like to start searching for it now.

Child Research Net would like to thank the Doshisha International Junior/Senior High School and Y. M., student and author, for permitting reproduction of this article on the CRN web site.

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