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September 3rd 2010
Published: September 3rd 2010
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see what i mean?
I taught a new public school today, which I didn't really like. I didn't get to meet any teachers because I was taken to my classroom and left there all day. Generally, I am escorted to a room by my assistant, a translator, who is with me the entire time I am at the school. Today, I was not given an assistant and had to fend for myself. Usually, it wouldn't be so bad, but my classes were about 70 students who didn't understand a lot of English so they wouldn't listen and talked almost the entire time I was teaching. It was really hard to teach, needless to mention, frustrating. So my first class was ok. At the end of class though, I was rushed by 20 students who wanted my autograph. At first I thought they just didn't know how to spell my name, but soon I caught on: they wanted me to sign their books. A little strange. My next class was a little worse, but at the end, no students rushed me. Four students did stay though, to talk with me. They were intrigued with me. I don't really understand their fascination and curiosity with foreigners. One
dancersdancersdancers

it was probably 730 am when i saw these on the side of the street.
girl asked if she could touch me. Lol. And then they gave me a chinese name, Wu mei li, which means beautiful. Is that cool or what? "My name is Beautiful." A girl can get used to that. :P They really liked that I could speak a little chinese. They got a kick out of me saying dumplings (bao-zeu) and the numbers. So I started saying page numbers in chinese and that worked well. After the second class, we have about a half hour break where the students go out to the playground and get into their line formations. I don't know what they practice since I don't understand the man over the speaker. But it is an odd thing to watch. They march in place, with swinging arms and all. From the window above, they look like an army in training. I managed to steal a picture.

The next two classes got progressively worse, though the last class was better about listening. And both classes mobbed me at the end of class. In one, there was a girl who was taking pictures of me during class and then wanted to take one with me after I wrote my
helenhelenhelen

at the "western" coffee shop across the street
name in her book...saying I gave her my autograph is really, really, REALLY weird. I sat there for a while thinking, yeah, this is how celebrities must feel to be stared at all the time, to be mobbed for an autograph, for people to be so happy and excited to see them and want pictures. Aye. I don't know about that.

Note: the pictures are just random stuff from over the last few days.



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how is a girl supposed to know what to get?!
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at the park
skin color storeskin color store
skin color store

right around the corner from our apartment...meiguo means america.


3rd September 2010

Teaching
Okay, I have been in your shoes in a class that doesn't listen. It is impossible to teach and harder for those who want to learn. You need to get their attention. So there are things you can try. Stop teaching and quietly ask for their attention. If it doesn't happen, stand front and center in front of the classroom, not behind anything, and be incredibly silent. Clear your throat, and be silent. They will turn to look at you and you can raise your eyebrow and ask for silence in the classroom. If all else fails, tap something in a constant rhythm and loud enough for it to get irritating. Classes that size are difficult to handle, so you must get their attention. You could also get them repeating something or give them a short assignment that you want completed in 5 minutes. Just depends on what you are allowed to do. Good luck girl, you are doing great! Miss you, but PROUD of your decision and positive attitude!
4th September 2010

I think the best part might have been the 4 students at the end of that one class. Hold onto that part of your day because that's one of the reasons you are there--for kids like those that actually appreciate your presence and help. Oh, and yeah, their structure at break time weirds me out a bit... Had a rib at the cook off for you today and Mari and I reminisced about her fun b-day with you and me breaking it down on the floor ;-) Ciao, bella :-)
4th September 2010

proud of you!
How old are these students? Getting their attention and respect. Have they given you any ideas for getting all eyes and ears to be on you? Maybe touching your eyes and ears or pointing to them and then point to your eyes for them to look at you. and do the same for the ears I know when my parents were in Japan they would try to talk to a child in an elevator,,, they would not say anything until my parents were out of the elevator... but they did respond after a while Yes, just like subbing here or teaching preschool or adults... speaking quieter, or clapping softly... they will wonder what you are doing. or like in girls scouts... raising your hand for everyone to listen, Or sing... to get their attention. try whatever works If you can figure how to get their attention... maybe like Play chirades... act it out... they will have to pay attention to figure out what you are doing. Hopefully the translator will be back. I can not imagine 70 students! It will get easier...hang in there! It reminds me when AShley was in South Korea in a classroom. It was if all the students (all male) has never seen an American girl before... which is probably true... that they wanted your autograph and pictures and to touch you! It is awesome about your new name... beautiful! It seems like they have a very disciplined routine... like south Korea... they learn many languages, have long school days and are further ahead education wise than the USA. It would be hard to order from a menu... I would need to use a droid all the time with google translate! In fact, I want to learn french and spanish and italian and maybe german.. Hopefully this will prevent alzheimers! Anyways have fun and enjoy! we are so proud of you!

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