For the past week I have been teaching crazy middle schoolers in the south of Taiwan, called Tainan, how to learn English. During my time in Taiwan I have been able to rule out many jobs that I would not like to pursue as a career. First, I do not have any ambition to be an actress on television (or on any medium.) And now I have learned that I really do not have any desire to be a middle school teacher especially teaching English as a Second Language. Oh my goodness - you know being able to communicate to the students in their language is an important asset to teaching - I learned that this week!
My students are mostly boys, around 7th grade (12-13 years old). They like to run around, yell, hit, and do everything but what I tell them! When I was a teenager and would misbehave my mom would always tell me, "wait until you have children and they act like you are." Well mom, I didn't have to wait until my own children - I have experienced 60 times the chaos I caused you and dad this week! I truly appreciate the patience and perseverance of parents more.
I am trying to teach my students English vocabulary and I am using many different activities to do this. They are working on a drama to perform at the end of the camp. Each group will also perform a tv commercial that I wrote for them. Heaven help us all if the groups that perform on stage actually get through their little performances and don't fall apart in stage fright. I don't think they actually realize what they are going to have to do although I have tried to enforce the fact that they will be performing. Also I am teaching all levels of students about eating at a restaurant and playing jeopardy with them. I have played jeopardy seven times already and will play it 5 more times before the camp is through. I have had my fill of "Sports for 200...." for years now.
All in all the experience has been good. I have learned a lot about teaching and more importantly about controlling a classroom of crazy students. A little controlled chaos is okay. However, I am ready to go back to Taipei, sleep in my own bed and start my Chinese New Year vacation.
Chinese New Year starts February 6th and I will let you all know how it goes. I am just ready to not be around over 300 talkative, energetic, rambunctuous preteens!!!
Until next time,