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Youth Issues: Reported Information

Students read passages about Japanese teenagers then report on the information to the class.

Here, we look at how to teach expressions for reporting information, in the context of teenage life.

To report information we have heard or read, we use the grammatical expression 「そうだ」. At junior level students may have learned the expression「~そうだ」to express the idea of ‘looks…’, as in 「おいしそう!」’It looks delicious.’ This is a completely different function from 「…そうだ」which is used for reporting information. 「あのレストランはおいしいそうだ。」means ‘I’ve heard the food at that restaurant is delicious.’

Read the following excerpt from Hiroko’s diary, and note the two different usages of ~そう.

Task: Reporting informationの「そうだ」をさがして、したいてください。

The chart below shows the differences in formation of the two expressions.

When familiarizing your students with the use of 「そうだ」for reporting information, you may also explain the use of 「らしい」 for this purpose. 「らしい」is used when you haven’t learned the information directly, or when the information includes an element of assumption on your part. So in the diary above when Hiroko says「先生はつかれているらしい。」, she is assuming that her teacher was tired from the information she heard. The following diagram may be to clarify the various expressions.

Here are some activities which involve reporting information.

Activity 1: だれですか。(Guessing game)

Each student writes three things about him/herself on a piece of paper and gives it to the teacher.
The teacher reads the information out at random saying 「このひとは・・・・そうです。」 and students guess which of their classmates wrote it.

Alternatively, students can write about celebrities and guess who is referred to.

Activity 2: 伝言 (でんごん) ゲーム(Reporting game)

  1. Each student writes his/her name and three questions on a piece of paper and hands it to the teacher.
  2. The teacher shuffles the papers and hands one to each student. Students write answers to the three questions, adding their name.
  3. Students give the paper back to the person who wrote the questions.
  4. Students take turns to report the answers using the pattern 「~さんは、・・・・だそうです。」

Activity 3: ティーンエージャーのなやみ (Japanese teenagers' problems)

Two Japanese high school students are talking about their friends’ problems.

Task Sheet: Activity 3 (Word 24KB)

Task 1: Which story do the following key words apply to?



Task 2: Group discussion

Topic: オーストラリアのティーンエージャーがなやんでいることはなんですか。

First the teacher can ask students to report on any stories they’ve heard regarding similar issues in the Australian context. Then students can participate in a group discussion on possible reasons or causes, and report back to the class. This may be followed up by a sharing of ideas on prevention/solutions using sentence patterns such 「~べき/~べきじゃない です。」「~たほうがいい/ ~ないほうがいい とおもいます。」.

Additional Resources

Please read the Teacher’s Notes on Japanese Teenagers

Teacher’s Notes: Japanese Teenagers (PDF 201KB)

Resource created by Himiko Negishi-Wood (March 2001).

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