Intrepid Girl Reporter

Friday, 3/14: intentions gone wild
March 14, 2008, 1:41 pm
Filed under: skool, students, teaching

2L – Waiting on the World to Change

  • lesson w/o powerpoint needs SERIOUS modification
  • I think they were getting bored
  • rowdy and cranky (is that me?)

2I – Waiting on the World to Change

  • surprisingly good and engaged
  • even Smartass
  • the tiny kid (Smartass’ friend) was AWESOME
  • Monkey is worried about the environment
    • also resembles a young, Korean Matthew Perry

2E – Waiting on the World to Change

  • shy but they knew what they were doing
  • have them define almost every word in Korean
  • Cutest Student Ever won – did she win last week too?

So I was watching 27 Dresses last Saturday at the CGV in City Hall with Africa and some of her students. About twenty minutes into the movie, there’s a scene where Katherine Heigl takes a cab home from a wedding. As I watched her give directions, in English, I was sitting there thinking, What are you doing? He’s not going to understand those. It took me a full minute to realize that her character was not, in fact, in Korea, and was thus able to give directions without having to resort to desperate hand gestures.  Unlike me.

This is what living in another country does to you: seeps into your pores until the life you knew doesn’t even make sense anymore.

Anyway, in case we weren’t already aware that my school is at the bottom of Jeju City’s educational system, I learned a fun fact today: 25% of my second (i.e. American 8th) grade students are illiterate in English. TWENTY-FIVE PERCENT. One of the English teachers told me today that this is in part due to “not trying” and “not having ability.” Would someone care to tell me exactly what I am doing here? Is this state of static rage going to be the norm for the rest of my life?

Soccer and I are starting an English-language student book club next weekend. Right now we have around fourteen students involved. This is too many. What a problem to have, right? But, of course, it has ballooned way out of our original goals; we were going to have maybe ten students, until one of my coteachers heard about it from one of my other coteachers and encouraged her nephew to join, who then encouraged his friends to join, and Soccer’s coteacher started pressuring her to include her daughter (who’s in sixth grade), and we both got carried away with invitations and…So we have a place to meet, sort of, and we have a book for them to read, sort of, but I’m a big worrywart anyway.

For those of you who have followed my adventures through past blogs, please remember that the Confirmation name I chose was that of St. Martha, a choice that pops up inconveniently to remind me that, like Martha, I need to learn constant generosity of spirit – which is not to say outlandish promises, but rather the knowledge that in unexpected situations, resources can be made. We will make it work. We always do. There will be enough food to feed everyone at the dinner party, enough time and money to bathe a stranger’s feet, and if people complain, well, we did what we could.

But I’m still cranky.


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