Day 5-Monday, July 12th
July 16, 2010 § Leave a comment
I had my first day of teaching today! I was so nervous going in today, but the headmistress and the other teachs were so welcoming and hospitable. That is what I am learning and seeing everywhere I go. The people are gracious, kind and want you to be comfortable among them. I walked into the schoolyard and saw hundreds of EA children from ages 4-17. And once again I experienced the staring 🙂 Lots of double-takes, pointing and whispering and genuine curiosity about who I am. The children were very sweet and greeted me w/ simple smile. Many of them just want a handshake. I’m very quickly falling in love with their faces and their laughs. I taught grades 6, 7, and 9 twice. It was a bit crazy because I had no idea what they already knew and what they needed to learn. I started teaching basic synonyms, antonyms, homophones, and homonyms to my 9th grade class, and I asked them to use the words in a sentence. One very bright girl said, “Our English lesson is very easy.” Haha. I could only laugh. So I asked them how long ago they learned these things and they said, “3 years ago.” Oops! My bad. I really had no idea what level they were at. The difficult this is that there’s still a large number of students in each class who have no idea what I’m saying. It’s so difficult finding a balance between challenging the students who are at grade level and ahead and wanting to reach those who are so far behind. I guess that’s the battle that every teacher faces and I’m starting to experience it first hand.
In my 7th grade class I had the students stand up and tell me their name, age, and favorite food. I had one beautiful EA girl stand up and say, “First off, I want to welcome you to EA. I hope you enjoy your time in our country, and I want to tell you thank you for coming to teach us.” Man. That was really nice of her and I’m grateful for her kind words. You get a good mix of students here just like anywhere else. There are those who are eager and want to learn, and you have those who 1. can’t understand you. 2. don’t care what you’re saying 3. choose to ignore you 🙂 I’ll be honest, it’s difficult, but I really really like it so far. Incredible time with these students. Also, I’m losing my voice because of a cough I have, talking loudly all day, and adjusting to this new environment. So if you could be pring for rest and healing I’d really appreciate it. Thanks for following. Chow.