Letter Exchange and Automatic Translations 

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There are “club activities” at elementary schools in Japan. Usually it is held once a month at my place and I am in charge of the English club this year.

In the club, students exchange letters with those in Poland as a part of international cultural interaction. I started it since I worked at a junior high school and last year was my first year at my current workplace, an elementary school. From last year, I found that it was sometimes too difficult for students to write letters in English even though we, teachers, supported them individually.  This year, I have them use Google Translate for the letter exchange.  It seems students enjoy communicating with friends in other countries and they can focus on the contents of the letter. Thinking of the future they live in, it should be more common/ubiquitous using automatic translations.  I feel it should be very important to know how to use those technologies appropriately in real communication situations rather than strictly avoiding using them. 

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