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02 April 2010 @ 01:57 pm
Why I may not be online much this summer  
The program I will now be attending has a Language Pledge.  They actually do throw people out if they violate it.  It's so stringent it takes up most of the "congratulations you're in" letter.  I'm reproducing it here for the curious.

The Language Pledge:

The unifying feature of the "School Method" has always been the Language Pledge: a firm commitment by each student to use only the language of the School during the entire session, wherever he or she may be. What distinguishes School’s Japanese School from other Japanese language programs is the opportunity to learn the language by using it on a daily basis with your fellow students and with the faculty. This practice has contributed significantly to the success of the School, and willingness to maintain the tradition is a measure of each student's motivation. Even in the lower level courses the Language Pledge is taken very seriously, though in a modified form. ALL students and faculty members live in the Japanese language dormitory, and take their meals together in a Japanese language dining hall.

The administration of the School takes the Pledge very seriously, but attempts to be evenhanded and humane in its application. On occasion, when the student must use English to communicate with shop clerks, non-Japanese speaking staff of the College, etc., special permission need not be requested, but on each such occasion there must be a legitimate and demonstrable need. Students who may already know non-Japanese speaking persons in the college community or the Town of School should avoid their company during the session except for legitimate business reasons. The Director reserves the right to dismiss without credit any student who proves unwilling to abide by the Pledge.

We do not wish to cause friction between students and their families, therefore we ask that you inform your families and friends of the nature of the Pledge, and ask for their cooperation in keeping the frequency of communication as low as possible. Non-Japanese speaking family and friends should not be brought into the dormitory. You may send and receive essential correspondence in English; however, non-Japanese language newspapers, magazines, and recordings are NOT allowed on campus. Japanese newspapers will be available in the dormitory, as well as Japanese satellite TV programming.

Please notify family and friends of the Language Pledge, which you will take for the duration of your studies with the Japanese School. You may want to request that they limit their telephone calls, e-mail and other contacts, as appropriate.
Taraelementalv on April 2nd, 2010 08:59 pm (UTC)
Okay, yeah. Won't be seeing you online this summer. How many weeks does the course last?
my monkied brain: buffywill - *glomp*katekat1010 on April 3rd, 2010 12:42 am (UTC)
i know, right? it goes from June 11 - August 14. It will be strange to live w/out you guys.
Emmieangearia on April 2nd, 2010 09:14 pm (UTC)
Yikes, that's intense. I can see how it's beneficial for learning, but still... yikes.

Go you for devoting yourself to learning though!
my monkied brain: _nihon-flowerkatekat1010 on April 3rd, 2010 12:44 am (UTC)
Crazy right? But yeah, totally good for the brain to think in the other language all the time. They even have separate dinning halls and everything.

And thanks! wish me luck! :D
Kat: Frick!seductivembrace on April 2nd, 2010 09:36 pm (UTC)
Meep! Although, I can see the good behind this. But still...

How long is the course? The entire summer?
my monkied brain: xander - excitedkatekat1010 on April 3rd, 2010 12:46 am (UTC)
It's 9 weeks (june 11 - aug 13 ish), and yeah, i'm excited by it but a little scared at the same time. :D

(love the icon BTW - so perfect!)
Kat: *hug*seductivembrace on April 3rd, 2010 12:52 am (UTC)

I <3 Scrubs. Particularly Dr. Cox. He's just so sarcastically funny.

Wow! That's a long time. But, think of all the fun stuff you'll have to read when you finish.

kivrin on April 2nd, 2010 09:48 pm (UTC)
If this is the school I think it is, I've never gone to any programs there, but I've visited the campus a number of times (due to having family a bit to the north.) It's BEAUTIFUL (though it may be hotter and more humid than you expect for the region.)

Does the name "Freeman" figure in the return address on that letter? If so, it's the place I'm thinking of. :)
my monkied brain: b/g - in the librarykatekat1010 on April 3rd, 2010 12:47 am (UTC)
nope, i don't think so? at least, freeman isn't in the return address. :D but it is back east and i've never been to the eastern half of the US before. Though from the sound of it, I won't get much of the chance to get out of the school and see the area anyway
(Anonymous) on April 3rd, 2010 12:08 am (UTC)
This is honestly the way to do it. It's scary, yeah, and some parts of it will be extremely frustrating and suck, but I have a feeling you're going to get so much out of it.

I guess this means we'll be using Japanese when we finally get to meet-up!
Arielkikucutie on April 3rd, 2010 12:11 am (UTC)
Whoops, that was me. Didn't realize LJ had kicked me out of my log-in.
my monkied brain: _nihon_prayerskatekat1010 on April 3rd, 2010 03:49 am (UTC)
gotta love lj.

and I'm sad I won't get to see you! but it really is a great program, so i'm kind of really excited.
your royal pie-nessentrenous88 on April 3rd, 2010 12:35 am (UTC)
I have relatives and friends who have been to School, and keeping the pledge is grueling but produces such an amazing environment and gives you such a unique opportunity. You can do it, yayayayay!

Of course the rest of me wants to say, "Buck up, camper!" because wow, THIS WILL BE TOUGH, and send you cookies so you can be bolstered during all this! <3
my monkied brain: buffywill - *glomp*katekat1010 on April 30th, 2010 03:48 am (UTC)
(late comment is totally late, but not forgotten!)

I have heard now from a couple of people much the same thing and am simultaneously excited and terrified. But I also think I kind of need that push to finally get a little better, so I'm looking forward to it.

And I know right?? I will need all the camper bucking i can get!
Rainne: Castle - Beckett - Sepia Tonexdawnfirex on April 3rd, 2010 04:15 am (UTC)
Wow, talk about total immersion. I don't know if I could manage that. Props to you!
my monkied brain: buffywill - *glomp*katekat1010 on April 30th, 2010 03:49 am (UTC)
(late comment is totally late, but not forgotten!)

and thanks! I'm a little terrified by it, but ultimately thinking it will be good for me, so *bites nails* i hope it will be good!
Elite Nerd Patrol, On Duty: shcoolmechassninja on April 3rd, 2010 06:33 am (UTC)
you can totally call me bb ;)

a guy from our program went and did the middlebury chinese program last summer (i'm guessing that's where you're headed..?) and was sooo pissed about the pledge haha. good luck ;p
my monkied brain: You Rockkatekat1010 on April 30th, 2010 03:50 am (UTC)

and yep, that's where i'm going. how could he be pissed about the pledge? it's not like they don't advertise it and warn about it and all that stuff you know?
hawera on April 3rd, 2010 07:22 am (UTC)
Harsh, but it is a good policy.

Why did you choose such a fiendishly difficult subject?
my monkied brain: _nihon-flowerkatekat1010 on April 30th, 2010 03:52 am (UTC)
(my late reply is terribly late and i apologize, but this just goes to prove that on my lj, no comment is ever totally forgotten!)

And it is definitely harsh! I am simultaneously excited and scared!

I chose Japanese in part because I wanted to study science fiction as a genre and Japan is one of the few other places in the world that produces a great deal of science fiction. Although it's a much longer story than that, that is the short answer....