Well, my first week of teaching ESL is in the history books. I’d say it went well but you’d have to ask my students to find out the real answer to that. They are so fun! We make each other laugh and i keep telling them how smart they are… and they really are!
I’ve learned a few things this week and I’ll share them with you.
1. Be prepared. Don’t go into a classroom without your photocopies made, your plans finished or your books ready. It makes for a flustering few moments of panic.
2. Be prepared. I have 12 students in my classroom. 2 of the 12 are usually there by 9:00 when class starts. By 10:00 break, i most likely will have 9. After lunch i generally lose 1 or 2. What does this mean? It means i teach adults with kids and busy lives and school most often comes 2nd or even 3rd. I have to be prepared to teach whomever is there. I have set up a filing system that I put their work into if they aren’t there. I learned that we have to make them responsible for their own learning. They can at least pick up the materials if they miss class.
3. Be prepared. I dealt with bad weather, black ice, a car i was locked out of for 10 minutes and having to get gas in the morning. I now go to bed with my lunch made, my materials ready and i leave 10 minutes earlier. If i get to school early, I just grab an Earl Grey and head onto class. I HATE being rushed.
4. Be prepared. One never knows when one’s supervisor will enter the classroom.
I think you get the picture. My fellow teachers, who have all taught 3 years or less, don’t live by written down lesson plans. Me? I have everything written out to the minute – well, made the 1/2 hour 🙂
I watched my students get excited over our new face book page. (If you’re interested, you can join us at: Karen’s Sarnia YMCA ESL Class) Some of them weren’t even on Face book and i watched them help each other set up accounts for their friends – to which they then yelled across the classroom, “I’m your friend now!” Oh, dear, they weren’t before? 🙂 I watched them help each other with pronunciations. They helped each other with Passive Voice. We even celebrated the Chinese New Year with candies from China! What a week it’s been.
So, my first week is over. The weekend will be filled with not only my household duties but with deciding what we’re gonna learn next week……. If you ever want to come and be an expert on anything, give me a call………. and remember, Even the Teacher can learn……… be prepared!