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The Language Learning Unit (LLU) is the most visible face of internationalisation at Keele University.
Language is inseparable from communication. Sadly, not many of us now learn a language in order to decipher ancient texts. In academic life it is all too easy to overlook how we can apply and practice what we learn outside the university. Academic success is clearly important, but by communicating to others what we have learned, not only in the classroom but through sharing our own experiences in “the real world”, we can also be the voice of internationalisation and even experience a sense of enjoyment in the process.

So, whether you are brushing up on your English for academic study, studying for a qualification to teach English, learning a modern foreign language or just interested in language and communication, we hope that this Blog will provide interesting posts and food for thought.

Friday, 30 October 2015

Summer School Reflections: University of Kyoto

Jacob Burrows reflects on his favourite day of  his 3-week summer school programme at the university of Kyoto, Japan :

Arashimyama – Arashiyama is located on the eastern side of Kyoto and was around 10 minutes from Kyoto gaidai by coach. Arrived at a train station and got on an open carriage style train that didn't travel very fast and that I was soon to discover was designed for sight seeing. This train travelled through the mountains following a river upstream and the whole scene was just beautiful! The mountains lumbered over us either side of the valley and were thickly covered with trees. I had trouble believing that 10 minutes ago we were in the Kyoto city.

 It was a typically hot Kyoto summer day but we were sheltered under trees and had the air cooled by the shade rushing over us. When we got to the other side of the mountains we came back down the river on a two hour boat ride. 

The sights were magnificent and you just have to be there to fully appreciate how pretty it is. I took a photo on my ipad and did side by side comparison of the scene, looking at my photo and then the actual scene, and pictures just don't do it justice. Anyways, the boat had a big canvas over the top protecting us from the sun, but there was no such thing for the three Japanese guys guiding and rowing the boat. They took it in turns to row for 40 minutes each. I was sitting down and I was sweating so I certainly didn't envy them. After the boat ride the university had generously organised another lunch for all of us. After we walked through the bamboo forests of Arasiyama. Super nice. After that I climbed up monkey mountain and fed peanuts to monkeys. The top of mountain overlooked the entire city of Kyoto. It was awesome. 

After returning for a quick shower, we went to visit fushimi inari. We didn't make the 2 hour climb to the top of the mountain as we were too tired out from the days activities and it was approaching dusk around this time. Thousands of torii (arches) line the path to the top of the mountain. We got some pictures, went and got something to eat and went straight to bed after an activity filled day.

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