Thursday, September 30, 2010

bfg on being an Oreo Queen

I write this having finished my bag of mini-oreos. 340 calories of pure yumminess. I shouldn't be doing this  but I had to celebrate.

This week of teaching has been crazy. Crazy AMAZING.

So like I said, after one week of disaster with me disciplining more than teaching I had told my students that the Homeroom with the highest hanko every student gets a prize.

Holy Fuck. The difference these two weeks.

I mean its not only that I hardly have to discipline. The kids are laughing. Today my eyeballs almost popped out of my head. I had almost HALF THE CLASS with the hands raised, yelling out "Hai!! Hai! Vanessa sensei!! Hai Hai!!" And at one point when I called on one girl, the rest of the hand raisers were like "NO! NO! NO! I, I, I!"

Just to relish a bit an example: today for my shopping lesson I told the JTE's instead of doing the Warm-up activity they wanted me to do (some lame listening excercise from the textbook) I wanted to get them to talk.

So in class, after showing them the chart of how many hankos each Homeroom has and that if they participate I will give them many a hanko my first questions was, "Can you name some malls in Shizuoka?" I gave an example, "Parco!"

Whereas two weeks ago, I had a room of silence and the echo of the sweat drops from my back hitting the floor (gross), here I was ignoring the screams and insisting on raised hands, "I don't hear voices that come from people who don't Raise. Their. Hands." Yeah, I am kinda military.

I couldn't believe it. I still can't. I mean... a month ago these kids were hiding their heads in a towel. One of my kids, after ten minutes he asks to go to the nurse's office. He didn't just stay today, he was one of the ones vying to be called upon.

It is exilerating. I wasn't teaching them. We were actually conversing. We talked about what we like to buy. I told them about how I like buying books and they were super into my English Edition of ONE PIECE that I got from Toda Books here. Some students would just yell things out like, "This shiumastu I go shopping too!" or "Vanessa sensei, which Starbucks you go?!" Happiness.

I am planning a mega-lesson two weeks from now. Basically the kids are given a Treasure Map (AKA Map of the School) and they have to follow the directions, vocabulary which I have done with them this class, to find it!

I organized it bit more so that groups go out for five minutes at a time while the others do a cross word puzzle. Anyways, I am pretty excited. It is a step towards what I want my lessons to really be like: PRACTICAL APPLICATION.

I will say that my letter writing has paid off as well. I have been getting love letters but even more then that I think the students see me as a human being. They all complain that "Vanessa sensei is too difficult!" but I think they are actually learning. A little.

I really need some off time though and I can't forsee any coming my way. I have been making progress, thanks to tutor appointments where I sit down with someone native and go through my Japanese primary sources. But my own reading - blah. All I want to do is watch tv or do work for lessons... while watching tv. Honestly, I feel super guilty just writing about this now. Which is probably why I am doing it? Writing always gets my ass moving somehow.

Some random stuff...

I am having a lot of trouble opening doors. Yeah, I know - I really need to die my hair blonde or something. Twice now I opened the door on my head. Once I had my helmut on (I forget it on sometimes) so it saved me but yeah my head... hurts sometimes. And then opening a door - opposite to Canada.

Moving On.

I have a Hello Kitty kitchen thing that you use to flip things that are in a pan. I bought it in the most amazing 100 Yen Shop on the face of this earth (that I know of yet). I will probably never use it but I had guests come over and we had to eat the pancakes they made with chopsticks.

The end for now. I need Winchester Boys.

bfg out :)

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