School, Students, and Teaching....

Trip Start Sep 30, 2007
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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Well here it is....the blog you have all been waiting for?  A lot of requests to hear about what teaching is like and wanting to see pictures of my students and fellow staff.  A week of shooting pics here and there and I got enough to satisfy you I hope.

Teaching is even better than I thought it would be.  I really thought I would enjoy it, but I didnt know all the little things that come with it, and I surely had no idea I would be so lucky to end up at such a great school with such great staff and support.  The school isn't real big, which is nice.  The curriculum is well structured and organized and they leave me with plenty of freedom to implement my own style and ideas.  My boss and the director of the school is wonderful and takes good care of the teachers.  That is something that isn't always so common for English teachers in a foreign country, so I am blessed.  The staff I work with are all great people and a joy to be around and it feels like we are all a good team.

The students are the best part.  I absolutely adore them and I often find myself in class during lesson and class sessions wishing some of you could be in the class to see what it's like.  Its not always bliss, so dont get me wrong.  They can be quite a challenge and every age group is different and requires different methods, but that is part of the fun.  I have a class of 3 and 4 years old, called Smart Little Stars.  They are by far the most challenging and they can take so much energy out of you in a short time and they require a lot of patience.  They dont know barely any English so communication is minimal and mostly left up to body language and entertaining them, but when you make a connection and when you see them learning, it lights up your day and reminds you why you are doing what you are doing.  I have some classes of 8 to 10 year olds, which are my favorite.  Its not like parenting, where you tell yourself you cant pick favorites.  Even if you try, with some kids, you just naturally grow very fond of some and realize how special and beautiful they are.  My Smart Kids 2b class is by far my favorite and I love every one of them and truly look forward to coming to class.  My other classes are great too.  They all posses different challenges, along with different strengths and weaknesses
I think so far, the hardest part of teaching is instructing the class as a whole while also having to attend to individual learning needs.  Some kids are just naturally smarter than others and they finish faster and you have to keep their interest, while giving more attention to the slower learners and helping them along.  I have to say its amazing how well the kids get along with each other and watching them interact is amazing.  Many of them come from completely different backgrounds religiously and ethnically.  Some are Muslim, some are Christian.  Some are Indonesian, some are Korean, and some are Chinese.  They are still so young and innocent that they dont care and they all love each other and interact peacefully and laugh quite often.  Watching children provides a vision of what a peaceful world might be if people didnt judge each other so much.

I also have a conversation class of housewives, but I have yet to take it over, so that will be interesting.  I will have another adult class of conversational English too, all new students.  Im looking foward to that as well.  It's nice to have such a big of age groups.  It's a lot more challenging, but it mixes things up and makes it more interesting.  It will provided a mucher broader range of teaching experience as well.

That's all for now, its 11pm and Im at an internet cafe with only an hour left so Im hoping I have time to upload all these pictures for you to see.  Take care and talk to you soon.


Nate
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