My Message for Other Returnee Students (帰国子女)
Here is my thoughts on being a returnee, standardized testings, and why I chose to become a tutor for other returnees.
For many returnees, or 帰国子女, English testings such as Eiken, TOEFL, TOEIC, and SAT may feel daunting and stressful. When students are pressured into taking these tests, they often lose sight of the fun in learning a new language - and rightfully so.
Learning English from an early age is a blessing and a miracle. It opens up many new doors for the future that many other students do not have the opportunity to explore. However, when the learning is constantly measured with scores and pass/fail, the process quickly becomes a pain and a burden. I have been there, and I understand.
I decided to start tutoring returnees like myself because I know the struggles of living abroad as a Japanese student. Many of my students go to school five days a week, work on homework and tests, and go to Japanese school on Saturday... to which again, they have homework for. On top of this, they often study for Japanese entrance exams as well as standardized testings such as Eiken, TOEFL, TOEIC, and SAT.
What I quickly realized in high school was that efficiency is key. I researched and prioritized important points that I had to study so that I can reach my goals in a short period of time. For example, some cram schools and test-prep courses gave me lists of vocabularies to learn for the SAT and TOEFL, and while this works for some students, it was not right for me. I also realized that many off-brand test-prep books (ex. Barrons, Princeton Review, etc.) should only be used for certain purposes only and not for mock tests.
Using my realizations and experiences, I hope that I can help as many students as I can reach their goals in life. Because while standardized testings are not everything, I also know that these test scores can open up many opportunities.
Personally, I never imagined I would end up going to a university in the United States. For years, I studied in hopes of going to my dream school in Japan. But what I can tell you from my experience is that being prepared with my standardized test results helped me suddenly change my direction in life and choose to attend my university.
If what you want in the future does not require these test scores, excellent.
But if it does, or if you don't quite know what you want yet, I hope we can work hand in hand to achieve your goals in front of you.