Teaching in Kazakhstan

This IAP 2019, I participated in MIT’s Global Teaching Labs program for Kazakhstan. During January, I wrote a series of blog posts that capture various aspects of my experience there, from teaching to travel to education in the country. In this post-trip post, I reflect on my experience and what I learned.

Lesson Plans from a Plane | ideas and plans for the workshops I taught
Aspects of Kazakhstan |observations about the Haileybury Schools and initial impressions of Kazakhstan
The Rolling Sauna | a 23-hour train journey from Almaty to Astana
Nazarbayev’s Education Initiatives | what I learned about education in Kazakhstan and stories about my host family in Astana

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Along the Chiba Urban Monorail

After six years, I’m back in Japan! The last time I visited, I hadn’t even started high school yet. On train rides, I would read my summer reading books (The Joy Luck Club and Why Geography Matters). Today, I read The Book Thief, a book I’ve been meaning to read for quite a while.

I’m staying in Chiba, the city where I lived as a toddler, at a family friend’s house. It’s a short 5-minute walk away from Chishirodai (千城台), a terminal station on the Chiba Urban Monorail. This monorail is the longest suspended monorail system in the world at 15.2 km (according to Wikipedia), and it’s pretty cute. The ride is super smooth.

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Taken outside Sports Center (スポーツセンター)

The monorail system offers a one-day pass, valid from 10:00 to 18:00, for ¥620, so I bought a pass and decided to visit Inagekaigan, the station closest to my childhood home. I knew from my father that there was a post office (郵便局, yuubinkyoku) nearby, and I saw from Google Maps that there was a FamilyMart around the corner. (There are lots of FamilyMarts and 7-Elevens in Japan.)

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