Shino Hayashi Hirata teaches modern Japanese courses. She earned her MA in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) from the University of Minnesota and her MA in Japanese Language and Literature from the University of Wisconsin.
When someone asks Shino Hayashi Hirata what is unique about being a language instructor, she would answer that not only is she aware of the various teaching practices currently available, but she also has hands-on experiences with many of them. Shino learned language teaching methods and strategies from renowned professors during her school years both in Japan and the U.S. She earned an English teaching certificate for high schools in Japan while she was at Tsuda College (津田塾大学). Then she studied Teaching English as a Foreign Language at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, and Japanese Linguistics at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. She also received a certificate in Japanese Pedagogy from The Ohio State University. Throughout her teaching career, she has been assessing herself while working with numerous talented language instructors and receiving feedback from them at a number of institutions, including International Christian University in Tokyo, Japan, Swarthmore College, Middlebury College, and the Kyoto Consortium for Japanese Studies in Kyoto, Japan, and Washington University in St. Louis. Out of all the teaching methods and strategies she has learned or used, she has picked and chosen what best fits her and makes sense to her.
At the University of Minnesota, she wrote two theses; one was a linguistic analysis on English non-count nouns shifting to count nouns and the other was an action research on her TESL practicum experience. At the University of Wisconsin, her thesis was on error corrections in a Japanese language classroom. She is now interested in a variety of research topics related to language pedagogy and professional development. Her recent conference or workshop presentations include:
- “Gender and Racial References in the Textbook” Presented at the Language Teaching Fair at Washington University, St Louis, MO, 2019
- “Poster Presentation as an Activity to Promote Peer Learning by Learners in Different Proficiency Levels” Presented at the 24th Princeton Japanese Pedagogy Forum (PJPF), Princeton, NJ, 2018
- “Focusing on Students’ Interests and Needs: Possible Collaborations between Language Education and East Asian Studies” Presented at the Annual Spring Conference of American Association of Teachers of Japanese (AATJ), Seattle, WA, 2016