Great-Grandmother Proves It Is Never Too Late to Learn
Setsuko Takamizawa is set to prove that it is never too late to learn.
At the age of 91, the great-grandmother is learning English with the help of her family. She hopes to use the language at next year's Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Never too late to learn
Takamizawa was one of the more than 200,000 people who requested to volunteer for Tokyo's 2020 Games. English is not required for service, but it is a helpful skill for volunteers to have.
But Takamizawa had not been able to learn the language when she was young.
Takamizawa told Reuters that she was in high school when World War Two started. She said, "In my second year there, English was banned because it was the enemy language."
Takamizawa said that her grandchildren helped persuade her she was not too old to learn.
"When I talked to my grandchildren about my wish, they said, ‘it's not too late. We will teach you one word a day. It's going to be a good challenge for you'."
Natsuko is Takamizawa's granddaughter and main English teacher.
Natsuko sends a new English word to her grandmother's phone every day. They also often work together directly on phrases that Takamizawa will need for the Olympics.
"Welcome to Tokyo, this is the Olympic stadium, how can I help you?" Takamizawa answers when asked to say an English phrase she has learned.
Natsuko explains that she wanted to give her grandmother something to enjoy. "I can clearly see her English is getting better. It's my joy now."
The EF English Proficiency Index is a measure of the level of English spoken in a country. Japan ranks 49th among countries where English is not the first language.
This situation is slowly changing as younger generations welcome English. Japanese students often learn English at a much younger age than they did in the past.
However, Takamizawa believes real change will not happen unless Japanese people become more open to the rest of the world.
She says that people in Japan should act not only as Japanese citizens, but also as "global members" of the Earth.
With around 500 days to go until the Games begin, the whole Takamizawa family is ready to welcome the world to Tokyo.
When Japan last held the Summer Olympics in 1964, Takamizawa was too busy raising a family to go to any events.
Takamizawa said she never thought the Olympics would happen in Tokyo twice in her lifetime.
"It's good," she said, "to live long."
I'm John Russell.
1.younger generations 年轻一代
Does China have a future in its younger generations?
2.the first language 第一语言
English is the first language in none of these countries.
3.the Summer Olympics 夏季奥运会
Maybe the sport that I like very much in the summer Olympics is track and field.
4.raising a family 养家糊口
It's difficult raising a family on one salary.
5.They also often work together directly on phrases that Takamizawa will need for the Olympics.
work together 合作；共事
They seemed able to work together very efficiently.
If we'd all work together, I think we could accomplish our goal.
6.Setsuko Takamizawa is set to prove that it is never too late to learn.
it is never too late to learn 活到老学到老
Just as an old saying goes: it is never too late to learn.
I want to remind you that it's never too late to learn.
势津子·高见泽（Setsuko Takamizawa）将向世人证明，活到老学到老 。
这位已是曾祖母的91岁老妇在家人的帮助下学习英语 。她希望能在明年东京奥运会上“展一技之长” 。
势津子告诉路透社，二战开始时她正读高中 。她说：“在第二学年英语就被禁止了，因为它是敌国语言 。”
奈津子每天给祖母的手机发送一个新的英语单词 。她们还经常一起探讨势津子在奥运会上需要用到的一些词组 。
奈津子解释称，她想给祖母找点乐子 。她说：“明显能看出她的英语水平日渐进步，这也成了我的乐趣 。”
英孚英语指数是衡量一个国家英语口语水平的标准 。在英语非第一语言的国家中，日本排名第49位 。
随着年轻一代逐渐接受英语，这种现状正在逐渐改变 。日本学生开始接触英语的年龄通常比前几代人年幼得多 。