37th Philippine Nihongo Teachers’ Forum (PNTF)
November 17 – 18, 2023
Ateneo de Davao University (AdDU)
The Philippine Nihongo Teachers’ Forum (PNTF) is a bi-annual event that provides an avenue to discuss developments in Japanese language education, exchange ideas and resources, and strengthen the professional community of Filipino Nihongo teachers across the country.
The 37th PNTF was organized by the Association of Filipino Nihongo Teachers (AFINITE) in partnership with The Japan Foundation, Manila, and was held in Davao. The forum was attended by Nihongo teachers from different regions in the Philippines, coming all the way from Baguio in the north and Bukidnon from the south. The two-day forum entailed presentations that expanded on the theme, “Unleashing Creativity in the Digital World: Innovative Activities for Nihongo Learners,” starting with keynote speaker, Dr. Stella Marie Arcenas (Chair, Department of Languages, Literature and Arts, AdDU) conveying that creativity is also a matter of social factors, and that language teachers must seek authenticity to be able to impart to learners the communicative ability to navigate the world.
The presentations that followed captured this essential paradigm; topics ranged from (1) Adult Learning Principles for Digital Games, (2) Micro-vlogs that foster the new ‘viewing’ language macro skill, (3) Digital Creativity for Teaching through utilizing platforms such as Discord and mediums such as podcasts, and (4) Technology Application in the Classroom featuring various game-based Nihongo learning activities for high school students. After which, select teachers and a representative from the Association of Nihongo Teachers in the Visayas (ANT-V) shared updates on how Nihongo learning resources, such as the IRODORI, have shaped their own language classrooms along with a response from JFM representatives.
During the second day, participants were given the chance to practically apply their learnings through a collaborative workshop. In three groups facilitated by the speakers, attendees discussed, conceptualized, and presented activities that they could use in their own classrooms – both digital and face-to-face.
In closing, JFM Deputy Director Tanaka Yojiro conveyed that the forum proved that creativity comes in various shapes and forms. What might count as creative for one educational setting may differ from another. Precisely because of this, however, collaboration as educators takes on a new importance. Echoing the same sentiment, Senior Japanese Language Education Advisor Fujimitsu Yuko gave the closing remarks and shared that teachers are ‘generators’ – active participants in the creative learning process.
Indeed, in this digital age, teachers bear the vital role of harnessing the power of technology to encourage collaboration among colleagues and students who are their essential learning partners.
The Japan Foundation, Manila is grateful to all attendees. We hope to see everyone during the next forum!