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  • By Linka Wade | 13th September 2018 | No Comments

    I’m going to make a guess about your school. Whether it’s elementary, junior high, or high school, I bet there’s some little table or room where everyone gathers to eat some snacks or drink tea. A lot of times, I think ALTs (including myself!) are intimidated by the group of teachers hanging out at the snack table and tend to just stay at their desks instead. But that snack table is actually your gateway into their social network and more natural communication! So, go and be brave, go and break …

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  • By Editor | 7th September 2018 | No Comments

    Thanks to everyone who sent in a photo submission for the summer contest! Congratulations to Sarah Dela Cruz for winning the contest. You can see her picture, and the other great submissions, in the gallery below:
     

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  • By Editor | 2nd September 2018 | No Comments

    When the dust settled, it was the team in green who hoisted the coveted Golden Cabbage; the second consecutive year in which the Tobu region would win the late-summer classic.
    ALTs from all across Gunma traveled to Takasaki as the Gunma Games returned for its sixth iteration on September 1. As always, the event attracted a large crowd of both new and returning JETs. Throughout the day, competitors from the five regions of Gunma competed in a series of events in which – keeping on topic with Gunma – involved A …

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  • By GAJET | 31st July 2018 | No Comments

    For leaving JETs, summer is often a time for closure. They come from all over the world, but for a brief moment – whether it be one year or five – they all shared the bond of calling Gunma home. Although these JETs will be moving on to new adventures, it’s certain that their time in Gunma will be unforgettable.
    As they prepare to depart, GAJET caught up with some leaving JETs to reflect on their time in Gunma.
    “It was a blank slate. I didn’t know what to expect,” recalls Teresa …

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  • By Gavin Au-Yeung | 27th July 2018 | No Comments

    Head to the seventh floor food court at Takasaki’s OPA mall on any given Wednesday evening, and you will likely see groups of young people seated at tables and cheerfully chatting. It may seem innocuous at first glance, but upon closer inspection, it becomes apparent that they are not regular mall-goers.
    Take a closer look and you’ll further notice that each group is comprised of two foreigners and two Japanese locals. Placed on each table, an orange piece of laminated paper with a picture of Gunma’s beloved mascot, Gunma-Chan.
    Written above the picture: …

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Travel

Travel recommendations and tips.

Teaching

Ideas for the classroom.

Food and Drink

Highlights from Gunma’s dining scene.

Guides

“How-to” guides for living in Gunma and Japan.

日本 in General

General Japan-related topics.

Guides, 日本 in General »

By Sarah Dela Cruz | 5th September 2018 | No Comments

Although Gunma is safe from most largescale natural disasters, it’s good to be prepared for the worst-case scenario. In addition to preparing an emergency kit and knowing emergency contact numbers, it’s helpful to know the closest shelter to both your home and workplace. Your workplace may even be a shelter!
There is a very convenient map of designated shelters on Yahoo!, but the guide is all in Japanese. English instructions have been written below for your convenience.
Evacuation Site Map
https://crisis.yahoo.co.jp/map/

If you don’t know where you are, leave the box blank and …

Food and Drink »

By BY TAMARA SCHOENBERGER | 3rd April 2017 | No Comments

~Osusume Café Series~
written by Tamara Schoenberger
___________________________________________________
This week’s café review is for anyone who appreciates a hot coffee paired with some cool jazz.
Concert Café in Takasaki
I almost didn’t notice this café as I walked past. But from the inside, deep and earthy tones of a double bass found their way through seams and glass panes and leaked into the streets. The low, inviting rhythm caught my attention and I had to stop and listen.

By the entrance there is a menu board listing all the artists to play over during the current month. I …

Food and Drink »

By BY TAMARA SCHOENBERGER | 13th March 2017 | No Comments

~Osusume Café Series~
written by Tamara Schoenberger
___________________________________________________
Warming your hands with a steamy mug of house coffee as you look around in awe of the cozy, contemporary and themed atmospheres of Japan’s coolest cafes doesn’t have to be limited to weekend ventures to Tokyo! With these articles, I aim to bring the spotlight to the more than deserving cafes of Gunma. Even in the inaka (and surprisingly enough, especially in the inaka) there are hidden gems scattered all around the prefecture just waiting to be unearthed. As I find these, I want to …

Guides, 日本 in General »

By BY NEAL BEAVER | 27th January 2017 | 1 Comment

Finding music gear in Gunma
by Neal Beaver
 
New Year’s resolution is to get a new hobby? If you’ve set your heart on learning a musical instrument, but don’t know where to get one, this guide is for you! I used to trek all the way to Tokyo, thinking the big city would have the best deals, but I learned that Gunma has hidden gems of its own. There are plenty of music stores in Gunma that didn’t make this list. If you had a great experience somewhere, please share in the …

Guides, 日本 in General »

By Sabrina Cramer | 25th July 2016 | 1 Comment

So you’ve decided that you want to keep your original phone from your country and only get a sim card in Japan. Use this handy guide to get yourself set up!

Guides, 日本 in General »

By Rodney Sloan | 22nd January 2016 | No Comments
Snow – A Beginner’s Guide

It starts snowing and my brain goes into survival mode. My t-shirt reads “I survived Snowmageddon”, but snow is as alien to me as a South African in an izakaya. We don’t get snow in South Africa—at least that’s what I tell people—but speaking for myself, it’s more that we don’t “get” snow.

Guides, 日本 in General »

By Cece Chu | 13th January 2016 | No Comments
Leaving JET?

It’s been about four months since I’ve left Gunma after my year on JET. I’m currently working full-time at a private school teaching third grade as an aide, while also actively looking for the next step in my career. Finding a job is on everyone’s minds as they end their tenure in Gunma. I think about Japan pretty often, and came up with a list of things I wish I knew (and wish I did) while I was in Japan. Hopefully, this can help you in preparing to go back …

Guides »

By Greg Morrison | 1st December 2015 | 1 Comment
Not Recontracting? What to Do After JET

You’ve run out of ideas for warm up activities and you no longer get excited by 24-hour combinis. JTE small talk still isn’t getting any easier and, worryingly, you’re actually starting to like melonpan. Despite Japan feeling like a second home, you’re edging towards the dramatic conclusion that is “Stage 4.” It’s time to awkwardly decline that offer to recontract because, if you’re honest with yourself, you know it’s time to move on. Only one issue remains: what next?

Food and Drink, Guides »

By Mitch Goddard | 27th November 2015 | No Comments
Tokyo’s Top Five Cafés

As I sit in the staffroom sipping my lukewarm, bitter, flavorless school drip coffee (because I’ve run out of the next best thing, Blendy sticks) I cast my mind back to my weekend in Tokyo… visiting amazing cafés, stylishly drinking macchiatos as if I was Kim Kardashian buying shoes at Louis Vuitton. If you’re feeling like me and (constantly) craving a decent coffee then here is my top five cafés to visit in Tokyo for a bloody decent coffee.

Food and Drink, Guides »

By Pat Penny | 13th November 2015 | No Comments
Takasaki’s Top Three Ramen Shops

The temperature is steadily dropping here in Takasaki. As the crisp night air of fall makes way for the dreaded karakaze of winter only one thing can drag me from the warm confines of my apartment (or my kotatsu). Ramen.