Just as I reach a point of feeling down, discouraged, and doubtful (whoa, I didn’t even mean for all that alliteration to happen), Monday comes around and makes everything better. Which sounds like a strange thing to say – who likes Monday? – but for me, the only way to feel confident about my lessons or what I’m teaching is by actually doing it.
Not that every lesson becomes magically perfect when I start teaching it, but I get immediate unintentional feedback from the kids as to whether something is working or not and then I can change it and feel more sure of it. No matter how much I try to play out how a class will go in my head, it’s never quite the same as experiencing it in the moment.
Plus, the kids today were just so enthusiastic about everything – about me, about English, about speaking, about every activity I wanted them to do. That always helps. (I have the “A” classes this week at my small school, which means the highest level classes. Hence their enthusiasm, I’m sure, since it’s hard to be enthusiastic about something when you can only understand every 5th or 10th word the teacher is saying.)
Since today was the start of Week 4, I also finally got to see my first class again – the one I had on my very first day of teaching. The kids paraded into the room with shouts of “Teacher, I missed you! Teacher, 3 weeks so long!” That made me happy too.
Also, there is nothing quite as joyfully chaotic as Korean students playing People Bingo. “DO YOU LIKE COFFEE? DO YOU LIKE SWIMMING? DO YOU LIKE SOCCER?” The classroom sounded like a zoo with all the animals out of their cages, but hey, it was an English-speaking zoo. So I’m okay with that.