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                 *English Speech Corner
                *Radio Ham Operators


 An English speech contest is held in Hekinan every year. The followings are some of the essays which the students in my school wrote.

   My First Step in Becoming a Volunteer        8th grader  

    I love little children.  Because they have very cute voices and smiles
  and they are cheerful. I come to forget unpleasant things when I play with
  them.  Little children have fantastic imaginations and they are positive.
  They can easily make friends even if they are different ages. They express
  their feelings and thoughts directly.  I think that's the best way to 
  understand each other and make friends.
    At the Labo Camp this summer I was an assistant leader.  I helped a leader.
  I served meals and took an injured child to the medical center.  I was 
  pleased to help a leader.  I was also pleased to take care of little 
  children.  Mothers of these children said to me "Thank you." I just enjoyed
  myself and learned a lot from the children.
    The main characteristics of a volunteer are volunteerism,pursuit of public
  welfare,no pay and continuity.I want to be involved in volunteer activities.  
  I think volunteer work is not a one-way activity.  Little children need my
  help and I enjoy taking care of them and learning heart-to-heart 
  communication from them.  So taking care of children is my first step in
  becoming a volunteer.   

  Challenge                   9th grader  

    This March I ran for Student Council and made a speech. At last I became
   a Student Council member.  I will never forget the tension.  This April
   the Student Council had a welcome party.  It was the first big event for
   this year's Student Council.  We danced in front of the students.  I have
   never done such funny things in public.  I can't remember what I did 
   because of the tension.  But I felt full of evergy.
     The Student Council has to control the school as leaders.  So we have
   many things to do. I felt if difficult to do well,both in Student Council
   and in club activities.  I have heard of such hardships.  In our school
   volleyball club there were 26 students in my grade.  And there were 4 or
   5 teams within my club.  So we competed with each other for positions and
   teams. I was very worried that I wouldn't be a player on the better teams
   if I was late for practice because of the work of the Student Council.
     At the beginning of June,we played a volleyball game against another
   school.  I was a member of the B team and we thought our team would win.
   But we lost the game because of simple mistakes.  At that time the 
   teacher said,"Some members don't practice,so you can't have good teamwork.
   I feel sorry for other team members."  At that moment I wanted to leave
   the Student Council and be the best volleyball player I could be. I cried
   because of the frustration.  After that,as soon as possible,I finishied 
   the work of the Student Council,and I practiced volleyball,so I could be 
   member of the B team.  I found it was difficult to do well in the Student
   Council and club activities.
     Now the Student Council is thinking about our Culture Festival.  And I
   practiced cheering at the Sports Day as a leader. I felt it was difficult
   to lead the students.  It is worth doing.  I have experienced many things
   and I found these challenges very important.  I'll never forget my 
   experiences because they help decide my future.  I think it's important
   to have such experiences.  I will do my best in the Culture Festival.
   After the Culture Festival I will challenge myself to do many things.      

   Life is Wonderful              9th grader  

    Why did you give birth to me, mother?  I shouldn't have been born.  When
  I argued with my mother, I said it without thinking.  Now I remembered that
  mother sat down at that moment and cried.  But I was an elementary school 
  student, so I couldn't understand why she cried.
    One day a newspaper article caught my eye.  It was a girl's words.  She
  lived in a poor country.  A Japanese reporter asked her, "What do you want
  to be in the future?"  Then she answered, "I want to live."  I was so 
  surprised that I couldn't take my eyes off the article.  What do the little
  girl's words mean?  If I am asked the same question, I will answer, "I want
  to do that, or I want to become something."  I was taught "You should have
  a big dream."  For her the big dream was to live.  I was very sad to learn
  that.  We hate and kill each other by wars.  Many people have been made
  victims of the wars.  They've lost their dear families and loved ones.  How
  painful it is without any support!  I can't understand their hardship, but
  they didn't have any dreams.  They just wanted to give up.
    Somehow I knew why my mother cried.  The girl said, "I want to live" 
  while I said to my mother, something like, "I want to die."

   Improving Myself               9th grader  

    It has been said that Japanese people don't have their own personalities.
  High school girl's fashion, for example.  They have the same brown hair, the 
  brown skin,  the same skirts and the same long socks.  When I see them, I 
  don't think they have their own personalities.  
   I've yearned for things to be like they are in foreign countries. In foreign
  countries, people have their own personalities.  Thsy don't just imitate 
  others, they get some hints from others, then they make and improve their own
  personalities.  I read one article in a magazine, written by a woman, about 
  Audrey Hepburn.  It said, "I like Audrey Hepburn.  But I didn't imitate her 
  as she did.  I got some hints from her and improved my personality."  I 
  thought this was a very wonderful idea.
    I also want to improve my own personality by getting some hints from people
  I admire.  But I don't want to imitate them exactly.  I want to make something
    I want to tell you one more thing.  When Japanese people get praised, they 
  are very modest.  I think modesty is very important.  But frankly, I want to
  say, "thank you" when I'm praised.  Because I think people appreciate my
  personality and my good points when they praise me.
    I've learned many things by studying English.  Studying English makes our
  view of life wide.  I've found things in my personality that I should improve
  since I began studying English.  In the future I want to improve my 
  personality and be a nice person.

   Better My English Make My Dreams Come True              9th grader  

   When I was in the fifth grade, I began to study
   English at juku. So I have studied it for five years. It was a lot of fun
   to study English. But I have always thought, "Why study English?"
   In the country I don't have the chance to speak it with foreigners. Even
   though I studied hard, I didn't have any chance to use it. So I thought
   it was meaningless to study English. And it is one of nine subjects at
   a junior high school. But one day, unexpectedly, I got a ticket to Edmonds,
   Washington, in the United States. Gradually, the question would be solved.
    This summer I went to Edmonds as an exchange student. Everything was new
   during this trip. I was worried that I wouldn't be able to understand my
   host family's English. But they spoke English to me very slowly, and they
   tried very hard to understand my English. For example, my host sister,Paige
   who is 7 years old said,"oops,oops" many times. When she fell
   down, dropped something, or was surprised, she always said,"oops."
   I couldn't understand the meaning. So I asked my host brother,Drew, because
   he was old enough to understand. He had a hard time explaining it to me.
   Then suddenly he told me the spelling. OOPS. I looked it up in the dictionary
   right away. The word was very interesting to me, and so we used it every
   day. I could communicate, remembering English I learned at school and juku,
   and I could use the dictionary without any help. It gave me a lot of confidence
   and courage.
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