There is common perception that if you have experienced living in different countries, you are blessed; however, this is not always the case because sometimes there are challenges that have to be overcome. This is the story of a young Japanese girl, Airi Sugihara who learned to speak in English through a tutor.
Airi was born in Tokyo and lived in a Japanese environment. When she was 6 years old the family had to move to New York because of her father’s job. The first few months of Airi’s life in New York were a nightmare because she did not speak English. The only support she got from school came from a Japanese ESL teacher and a half-Japanese friend who gave her all the help they could.
Airi’s mother was worried and hired an English tutor. It is easy for a child to learn a new language and soon enough Airi learned to speak and write in English. She became very fluent in English until it reached the point that she preferred English to Japanese. She made many American friends and started to imbibe the American culture. Airi felt like an American but remained Japanese at heart.
However, the family had to return to Japan because of the father’s job. In Japan, Airi felt like a “returnee” and had to reacquaint herself with navigating the city streets and riding the train. However, the people she knew seemed distant and different. It was difficult fitting in because they considered Airi as the “girl from America.”
Airi was discriminated because she speaks and writes English. She stopped participating because the teacher said that she was disrupting the class. The only positive thing was becoming part of a group of friends who relied on one another to share the experiences and the difficulties they are going through. The group was composed of returnees.
The best option to improve English communication skills is The Smart Tutor, a tutoring center that focuses on language and math excellence. The curriculum is based on the needs of the learners so that they can be tutored effectively. There are English courses for work, for everyday life and for further study.