Two Buses

Hello folks, how are you doing? Summer vacation is almost here and that will mean some downtime for the blog, but before we go, I just wanted to update you on whats happened recently.

As you know, we’ve been finding advertising the most difficult part of this book project. I think we have a really great idea, with a really unique method and we can help a lot of people in all walks of life here in Japan, but it practically means nothing if people don’t know about us. We’ve not had any good marketing opportunities for ages and then, just like buses, two appeared at once.

Recently, the local newspaper, Kahoku Shinbun, came to the school to interview us. They visited twice. The first time they spoke to me and the Japanese teachers about the project. Then they came back to interview some of the students. This week, the article appeared in the paper. It was a small section on page 17, but advertising that article on Facebook has got us a lot more views and likes. Unfortunately I had to take it down due to copyright issues. I was going to post it up here too but I can’t. You’ll just have to take my word for it that it was cool, because heaven forbid more people should actually read the article that they wrote for the express purpose of people reading it! When will japanese companies stop thinking so small? We could help so many more people if we could show the world what we were doing.

However, I’m just happy that It’s been a good time for marketing the book at the moment.
20130719-153303.jpg

Our second opportunity was that yesterday, Katie Adler of English with Katie interviewed me on her live Internet radio show. It was mostly in the name of my Japanese culture blog, Sakura Panda Tea Time but we talked a lot about my writing and the books I have published too. She was very interested in the school’s book project so we talked a lot about that.

If you want to check it out, there is a link to the recording here: link

So that’s it until the end of August. The students are working on their anime presentations and I’m off to China for a couple of weeks. I’ll update Facebook when I can, but otherwise, see you in the new term!

Delivered!

A quick update for you. It’s still spring vacation and I’ve been enjoying throwing off all the stress of this busy year, and most of that has come from this project! However, I went into school to discuss next year’s lessons and I was pleased to see that our order of 65 books arrived. It’s great to see the finished, final version. The cover is all glam and corrected. Even the interior looks much better but I did nothing to that. It’s just psychological.

20130403-193015.jpg

So, we’ll be getting those signed as soon as students return to school and shipping them off to our Indiegogo backers. We also need to discuss what we are going to do with all those copies. Some will go in our library, the rest will probably go to other schools.

We also discussed doing the project again this year, with the new second grade. We’ll create a bumper second edition that will feature 200 more reviews. That’s double what we have now!

So, audience, you’ve barely had time to digest the first edition, but we want to know: for a few dollars more, would you be willing to buy a bigger, new edition next year? Leave your comments below.

Released!

This is it! The book is now available in all Amazon stores. So I guess our release date is now. As of 20th March, 2013 ”Let’s Pop Culture! o(^0^)o A guide to Japanese culture written by real Japanese high school students in English!” is released!
goo.gl/N4zf6 (US) goo.gl/HehUf (UK) goo.gl/m66yT (JP)
20130321-103332.jpg

It’s been a long, hard road.

Today I’m visiting classes to give them the good news, show the book to those who haven’t seen it, and deliver my annual ALT prize for those students who made an effort with English this year. I made some key rings featuring the panda mascot of my Japanese culture blog (http://sakurapandateatime.blogspot.com). Hopefully, they will have the sense to get curious and google it to find out what Sakura Panda Tea Time is. It will be good study for them to try and understand what I am saying about familiar topics.

20130321-103040.jpg

Yesterday, I sent out the exclusive PDF version of our book to the Indiegogo backers. I’ve already had one person come back with how happy they are,so that’s really nice to hear. I hope the others are suitably proud.

We’ll be able to fulfill the other perks when the school receives its first shipment of books. That should be April 1st.

In Japanese

Its the last day of donations! Please do your best to spread the word! Instructions on how to donate are also available in Japanese http://www013.upp.so-net.ne.jp/dankato/mukaiyamaletspop.html. So tell this link to your Japanese friends.

プロジェクトのindiegogoのチャレティーは最後日ですよ!日本語で説明があります!どうぞ。http://www013.upp.so-net.ne.jp/dankato/mukaiyamaletspop.html 日本人と友達に教えてください。お願いします!

Damaged

So here is a video I recorded today of me running around the school looking for cracks… It shows youths damage that is still waiting to be repaired after 20 months (I said 18 in the video because I was too lazy to count).

Covered

Hello again,

Sorry to keep you waiting for almost a week. I have spent the past 3 days at work marking exam papers. It was exhausting. Each day my brain just could not take in any information. Then last night, I went the other way and I got all hyper. My brain was racing! Anyway, I’ve calmed down a bit now.

I posted on our Facebook page that I had received the final image for the book’s cover and promotions. Now, I finally ave time to post it here. So please have a look and let me know what you think.

20120927-094622.jpg

It was drawn by the talented Chevi. I asked for a group of students cheering on as a crowd, in the iconic Japanese school uniform even though my school doesn’t have a uniform, with the school mascot, the triangle headed guy. She delivered!

Over the next few days, between more marking, lesson planning, book formatting, work training and extra jobs, I’m going to play about with the lettering and get the text for the cover sorted. I’ll post some samples here and I’d like you to tell me which one looks best. So please stick around, visit regularly and help us out with our huge, life changing project.

Cheers, me dears!

Image

Marking Hell :)

Hello,

As you can see….

20120919-110321.jpg

I have a huge pile of marking…. And this is just the beginning. So forgive me if updates are sparse this week. I should be able to update at Mukaiyama as this is my other school’s tests and they can’t leave the building. However I will be more worn out!

The cover image is almost done and we are waiting for email responses from Studio Ghibli and Miss Alodia about using their images.

Speak again soon,

Matt.

The Cat Is Out Of The Bag

How are you doing? Is summer nice where you are or too hot?

I’m back a bit earlier than I said before. That’s because the English teachers had some further discussions. We decided that the summer vacation would be a great time to have the students work on the first draft of their review. Not only does this mean we can start earlier and give the students more time for writing, but it’s a longer period in which the project is active and I can provide information to potential backers when we start our Indie-gogo funding.

So, last Thursday and Friday I had lessons with Mukaiyama’s second grade classes. It was the end of a very hard week for me and I had full days of classes (since I was filming the 1st grade skit project as well for the school DVD) as well as interview tests to do after classes. Plus, the summer weather was particularly hot and humid that week. That should help explain why I look so tired and sweaty in the video below. Sorry about that. But yes, one of the other teachers filmed me introducing the project to one of the last classes. There is little reaction from students during the video, because they missed the finer details. However, I can assure you that when we handed out the newsletter after the recording stopped, and they read the Japanese explanation, there were plenty cries of ‘マジで?’ (seriously?).

I won’t comment further so as to keep this post reasonably short, but please take a look if just to laugh at how stupid I look.

This is it then, the project is under way! Please stick around and support us, because this is a brave venture for the school and the students are very excited now. Don’t let them work hard for nothing!

Almost out the gate

Today we went to the school’s principal to discuss the project with him. He seems very happy to pursue the idea. The talk was all in Japanese with only a few comments from me, but it seemed straight forward.

The principal here’s quite keen about the use of technology and such in school (he likes iPads for example) so I was confident he would take to it.

Now all that remains is to get my company’s permission. They seemed to only be concerned about my school’s willingness so I’m hoping it’s all okay. Stay tuned!

Previous Older Entries

Blog Stats

  • 1,066 hits

Fundraising ends!

The EndDecember 1st, 2012
Our big fund raiser is coming to an end... Here's when. Thank you for all the support! We all really appreciate it.

Machuusensei on Twitter

Error: Please make sure the Twitter account is public.