A Visit to Jones Sensei

The lunch bell has just rung and the first floor of the “C” building is bustling with students ready for their foreign language classes. The classroom of Mr. Jones is positioned at the left side of the building’s 1st floor, with the big windows facing the left side to get the sunlight from the North-East side. Students taking AP Japanese are working hard for the upcoming AP test and do not care that the test is not until May. 

Every Friday, Mr. Jones’ class watches Japanese (Anime) movies with English subtitles but with Japanese audios. Last year they watched “Your Name” “Summer Wars” and “Ghibli” etc..


The classroom is full of posters in Japanese nouns, names of each prefecture in Japan and also Japanese Chinese characters, Kanji posters which most of the students struggle learning with. 

The students are working on making window shields crafted and designed by small pieces of paper, to cover the huge windows in the classroom to prevent the bright California sunshine  from making the classroom warmer. 


Each class for Mr. Jones class from 1st period to 5th were given a theme for the poster. First period was “春” this is a character that represent a season spring in a one letter. 2nd period, 夏, the summer season, 3rd, 秋, for Autumn, お正月 for 4th which means the Japanese News year, counted as a one season and Japanese Traditional landscapes for 5th. 


Mr. Jones is a Yonsei, Japanese-American of fourth generation. Because he didn’t like that he could not speak Japanese, he took a Japanese language class during his sophomore year of high school. He went to Long Beach State and took a chance to transfer to Waseda university in Tokyo for one year during his Junior year of college. He believes that most people are able to learn another language by practicing. 


Living in Japan for one year, he became a Udon lover/fandom and got more interested in educating Japanese culture to students in the US. 


If you have any chance to pass by room C100, take a look at the window in the classroom.