Well I've been an international teacher for 2 weeks but in the classroom in front of students for 1 full week.
WOW! Is all I can say.
Things are definitely different than what I'm used to. First day of school as mentioned in my Day 1 post I only saw 2 of my 4 classes and I really think that has had an affect on how those classes are responding to me. Anywho let me paint a picture.
Back home hearing students curse was unfortunately a norm. I made it a point to redirect them if it happened in my class but overall I knew they cursed because that's either what they hear at home or how they talk. No, it's not okay and I'm not making excuses but it's the reality. But I digress.
Back home the first week most of the kids are trying to be on their best behavior and do any and everything the teacher says.
Back home the students are somewhat shy with each other the first week so there's not much extra talking and a good teacher will monopolize on this when setting the ground rules.
Here students are not shy with the teacher or each other. Many of the students from other grades came up to me before the morning assembly and shook my hand and welcomed me.
They are not shy with me or with each other. Because English is their 2nd or 3rd language when I'm talking they talk because they either have no idea what I'm saying or 1 of the boys who has a good handle on English is telling everyone who does not understand what I'm saying, what I'm saying. This can be frustrating at times because when I'm giving directions they are talking. Many times even though 1 is translating those listening are either answering or responding in Arabic to the one translating. Talking while someone else is talking is not rude or uncommon here. I've seen it happen with adults.
Here if a student says a bad word someone is going to yell out verbatim, "Ms. that boy (Points at boy) said a bad word. He told me to shut up." The class gets quiet and everyone waits for me to scold that one student. In my mind I'm saying, "Really, shut up is a bad word?"
If a student does not listen to what I'm saying, another student will say verbatim, "Ms. that boy is naughty."
I've had some of them translate an argument and this is what was said. I'm not making this up...
Boy 1: You need to listen.
Boy 2: I do listen. You need to listen.
Boy 1: Your mother did not raise you right!
Boy 2: No, you are a naughty boy. Your mother did not raise you right!This ends with both boys yelling and a little pushing. Another boy tells them to stop and they all walk away - TOGETHER!
My reflection this week is this: The biggest misbehavior is that they talk. They do not get up out of their seat. They are not throwing things. They are not on their phones. They are not sleeping. They are just very talkative. So, my plan for this upcoming week is going to keep them so busy they won't have time to talk or use their chattyness (IDK if that's a word) in my favor.
I'm definitely not going to quit. This is a chance for me to hone my teacher skills, learn about a new culture, and try to teach those who really want to learn.
Now one of my wins from this week. One of my classes is amazing! They are all so attentive to every word that comes out of my mouth. They are the class I have been looking forward to seeing every day. One of my lessons this week was about how to work in groups. I challenged them to make the best towers using Marshmallows, spaghetti, and duct tape. I was so amazed at their work! The buildings and the infrastructure here is amazing and seeing their marshmallow towers let me know they are paying attention to their surroundings.
Another win: On the 1st day I had this one class there was a student who was making noises and the other boys told me he speaks no English and can't read English. They also said he's naughty and was naughty to all of the teachers. On the next day I was determined to try and build a relationship with him. I went up to him, got on his level and asked him if he could write or read English. As predicted, he said no. I told him I would teach him how to read but I would need to teach the other boys first then he and I could work together. He smiled a big smile and said ok! In my mind I wanted to jump up and down and scream but I restrained myself. The music that played in my mind was "We're all in this together" from High School Musical. The next day he and I did a few letter recognition activities and I had him write a few sight words. He knows his letters and can write them so that helped out.
I walked away happy with myself and with a plan for the rest of the year. I am going to use this technique for everyone. I'm going to group them and teach them in small groups.
1 for Mrs. Janelle 0 for Grade 6 boys in English!
In other news, I was given a new schedule at the end of today that will start on Sunday. #FlexibleIsTheWordOfTheSchoolYear
Hi! I'm Unique. Follow along with me as I try unique things and travel the world!