First day of camps. Aren't you all dying to hear how it went? Well, settle in kiddies.
What was that about no electricity, GFBR? Yeah. Me too. Got it switched on and then moved to the new classroom to find — what’s this? — no computer! No powerpoints or photos or games. Cool. I can deal with this, I guess. Feel bad for the kids because they have to concentrate twice as hard to figure out what in the samhill is going on, and also writing things out on the board is about a billion times less interesting than quickly clicking through colorful photos of them.
I pointed this out to Co after her classes ended, and she came out to find us playing Simon Says on the dirt pit, because three and a half hours of worksheets, board writing and card games was about all I could stand to make them endure. She said, I know! I have to teach without a computer too! It’s inconvenient!
Well. I understand that it’s inconvenient for everyone. But it’s slighly moreso for the teacher who isn’t fluent in the students’ native language and relies heavily upon visual aids, which have all been prepared ahead of time and are now useless. But you know. That’s the way the cookie crumbles, I suppose. Like I said, I can manage. I’m not thrilled about it and I feel bad for the boys, but I can manage.
I’ve got about the swellest group of kids ever, and the third graders have integrated themselves nicely in with the first graders, and the second graders all seem to know the first graders anyway. It’s weird. Usually it’s like the goddamn Berlin Wall between different years. But, like I said, they’re a great group of boys.
We started class off promptly with one of them vomitting all over his desk. Bless his heart, he didn’t want to go home, though. He wanted to stay and play the game. During break time they got ahold of my phone, and I let them. I told them if I got home and found my language settings switch I would kill them tomorrow morning. They had great fun trying to work out the meaning of my most recent text messages. Native English is so hard!
While we were out playing Simon Says, some first graders started shouting, “Sexy girl! Sexy girl!” from a third story window. The first time I ignored it. The second time I told them to go away, which my students translated to them as “꺼져!” The third time, I set my boys to playing a game of Red Rover, and took to the stairs.
They couldn’t believe the foreign teacher had come to get them. I confronted the classroom full of boys to hand over the perps, and took the two boys out into the hallway. It was all smirks and sniggering for about thirty seconds. Until I asked who I was. A teacher. That’s right. And what did you say? Sexy girl. Right. You screamed “Sexy girl!” at a teacher, over and over again. Would you like to go down to the teachers’ office with me and tell the other teachers that you screamed “Sexy girl!” at a teacher? No? Why not? Names and class numbers, please.
Now they’re about to start crying. I said, look. I am a foreigner. But I am still a teacher. And you don’t talk to foreigners that way to begin with, but you certainly do not speak to a teacher that way. Understand? Good.
Sigh. I can’t believe I have to start all over again with the social training after vacation. But I have a feeling having three full classes of first graders oversee this little encounter will help set things straight from the beginning. I hope, anyway.