Welcome to the Web Site of the Materials Writers (MW) Special Interest Group (SIG) of the Japan Association for Language Teaching (JALT).
教材開発研究部会 (MW) のウェブサイトへようこそ。教材開発研究部会は全国語学教育学会 (JALT) の分野別研究部会 (SIG)の一つです。

SIG Statement of Purpose

The Materials Writers SIG (MW SIG) was established for the purpose of helping members to turn fresh teaching ideas into useful classroom materials. We try to be a mutual assistance network, offering information regarding copyright law, sharing practical advice on publishing practices, including self-publication, and suggesting ways to create better language learning materials for general consumption or for individual classroom use.
教材開発研究部会 (MW SIG) は、メンバーが日々の教育の場で得た新しいアイディアを教材にしていく助けとなることを目的に設立されました。著作権に関すること、自費出版を含めた出版に関する実践的なアドバイス、広く一般学習者または特定の授業のためにどうしたらより良い語学教材が作れるか、といったことに関するアイディアを共有しお互いを高め合える部会であることが願いです。教材開発についてもっと知りたい、自分のアイディアを形にしたいという方、入会大歓迎です。一緒に活動しませんか。

Materials Writers SIG Constitution
SIG 教材開発研究部会 会則

Our constitution was ratified at our AGM at the 2011 JALT International Conference.


I am a teacher, writer, environmentalist, and wanderer. Since 1993, except for a brief hiatus in Abu Dhabi, I have lived in five different locations within Japan. My home has also been South Korea (twice), Thailand, and many locations within the United States.  My travels have brought me to twenty-five countries. I am now a professor at Keiwa College in Shibata, Niigata. n the early 1990sSan Francisco State University granted me a master of arts degree in TESL/TESL. However, I have also studied in teacher training programs as a Peace Corps volunteer in Thailand and as a teaching apprentice at Harvard University. 

Materials Writing Interests:

I am interested in creating teaching materials that emotionally touch students and that make them think critically.  

Materials Writing Experience:

My first EFL textbook was Nature and the Environment, published by Seibido. As the title suggests, it is an environmental issues content-based ESL textbook. I was inspired to write this book when I discovered that I could not find a suitable book for my students.


My second textbook was This is Culture, published by Nanu’n-do. This textbook helps students to become more aware of their own cultural beliefs, which is an important step in understanding other cultures. My co-author Asako Kajiura is also my wife. Her background is in intercultural communication. By combining our skills, we were able to write a very successful textbook.


I put tremendous amounts of time and energy into writing Stimulating Conversation, my third textbook, which was published by Intercom Press. This is the most creative textbook that I have written. There are several activity formats which I have not seen in other textbooks. I believe that the textbook stimulates stimulating conversations about topics that are often ignored in global EFL/ESL textbooks. Facilitating critical thinking is one of the main goals of this book.


My fourth textbook is Multicultural Perspectives, published by Macmillan Languagehouse. I am now teaching students with lower-level English skills than I had beforehand. To develop their English skills and to inspire students to study cultural matters, I had to create materials with simpler readings than those within This is Culture. When writing this book, I kept in mind what sorts of topics and illustrations developed my childhood interest in world cultures.

Other Writing Interests:

In addition to writing textbooks, I also write letters to the editor about issues that are important to me, travel and culture related articles for various magazines, humorous or annoying (depending on your perspective) comments on Facebook, and posts about hot springs on my blog. Soaking in hot springs makes me a better teacher and writer. http://hotspringaddict.blogspot.jp/. Please click and check it out.

Final Comments:

Why not click on the links to my textbooks and ask the publishing companies to send you sample copies? If you have any questions, feel free to write me. I have many ideas and extra activities that never made it into the textbooks, and I am happy to share them.

Contact Information:

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