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Class Supplements, TOEFL iBT, Independent Essay Writing, Money for military or other purposes, The country I would like to visit on a two-week trip, Is it ok for teachers to express their political belief in class?

2012年8月7日

☆Writing Topic A: Some people think it is important for a country to maintain a strong army in case of war. Others think it is better for a country to spend money and energy on other things than the military. Do you feel that your country should have a strong army?

♦Hints for points
Yes:
neighboring countries (China, South Korea, and ASEAN countries) getting wealthier and spending more money on their military
America getting less wealthy
The threat of North Korea

No:
less chance of war than before (strong economic and political relationships with America, China and other countries)
doubt about solution of international conflicts by military power (Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq, “war on terror”)
Article Nine as a soft power
the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty (American military bases in Japan)
other priorities (global warming, sagging economy, aging society, need for more research and development of science and technology)

☆Writing Topic B: In your school schedule, you are required to take an extra class in one of the following subjects: 1) physical education (sports and exercise activities), 2) home economics (cooking or sewing), or 3) current events (the study of topics from recent news stories). Which one of the three subjects would you choose to study?

♦Hints for points
Physical Education: keep in good shape, opportunities to try unfamiliar sports, refreshment, make friends
Home Economics: independence, to understand the world at the level of household (the basic unit of society)
Current Events: to understand what is going on in the world
related to many important aspects of our society such as economy, politics, and history
area that TV reports do not constantly cover in detail (especially international affairs)

☆Extra Writing Topic: School teachers, whether they work for public or private schools, should not express their opinions on current politics.

♦Hints for points
Yes:
1. In practice, contracts between teachers and the schools they work for prohibit them from taking a stand in politics, and teachers should follow the agreement they made when hired.

2. Teachers should be the conveyers of the consensus of the public. They should inform students of a variety of, well-balanced views, not a slanted, personal view.

3. Having a radical political view is a stepping stone in any place, including universities, on this world. Therefore, it is unthinkable and unacceptable for teachers, who are responsible for their students future careers, to affect their students’ political views.

No:
1. As long as they clearly say to their students that what they say is only a private view, it is ok.

2. Except for young children, who are still vulnerable to brainwash, students know better than to believe everything their teachers tell them. They take their teachers’ opinions as one of the many.

3. There is no neutral view, and, if any, such sterilized statements as those found in textbooks approved by the government would be the worst teaching materials in class, where a human beings of two different generations struggle to make the most of the given time for the better future, which requires realistic understanding of the past and the present.

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