Wednesday, October 11

Umbrellas and Sweetie-Pies


Today I was at Genki Elementary School, where the kids were GENKI. I sometimes mean that in a good way. I can also sometimes see how this school is going to wear me the heck out.

At any rate, after a jumpy 1nensei class and a rowdy 6nensei class, I had two great 6nensei classes. See, I'm not sure where to start with these kids as it's mid-year. I figured 6nensei's would be pretty good since theoretically they've been learning English for a few years. However, it dawned on me, post-lesson planning, that they have only been getting English once a month. So, improv changes had to be made. The second two classes were great, though, a reflection, I feel, on their teachers, who are also great. (Damn! I was the frustrating teacher with the rowdy classes back home.)

Anyhoo, we had Fun with Green Frog and Pink Stitch, introducing each other, as "What's Your Name" seemed too elementary. Turns out it wasn't for the first class, so that's all we did. But the other two had a grand time role playing with me. Most of the fun was in seeing who I would throw the stuffed animals at next, but it was grand nonetheless.

At the end of the day, the second of the two good teachers came up to me and told me that one of the kids I had up there never acts or talks in front of the class, so when they all saw him come up, they didn't think he'd do it. To their surprise and the teacher's delight, he did it! That made me so happy, and I told the teacher so, and thanked him for telling me. Hooray for English class!

Another yatta: I finally met the Peruvian kid and spoke with him. He didn't want to do the activity we were doing, but once I egged him a bit and let him know I knew he spoke Spanish, and that I speak Spanish, he warmed up some. And it impressed upon him enough for him to tell his teacher! He even started coming around me during the day and saying "Gracias," and "Hola." Hooray for Spanish!

And now for the cutie pie of the year. In the rowdy 1nensei class, tucked back in the left corner was this little guy who I at first thought might be a troublemaker, mostly based on the kid next to him, who was a loudmouth, and the fact that he has the kind of facial structure that might belong to a cool JHS kid. I'm not sure how to explain that, only that certain kids end up being cool, and more often than not, if your face looks a certain way, you're destined for coolness.
But anyway, it turned out he was just a cutie-cutester who, whenever I put my finger to my lips and my hand behind my ear for them to be quiet and listen, he did it too. Kawaiiii! He was the only one following my TPR. Que lindo! That did it for me. He was so good during the class, and came by me during yasumi (which was indoors due to the rain), so I made sure to give him quality attention. Ay, pero que lindo, no puedo! I just wanted to hug him and cuddle him and take him home, kawaii! And encourage him to keep being so good and never change or become a smart-ass or stop trying because everyone/no one else is. Ay, tan lindo. Hooray for cutie-pies!

And that was my day, jam packed with "Choco kirai, Bleach kirai" (I hate chocolate, I hate Bleach), kids swinging from my wrists and legs, hugging me, enjoying touching my hair and exclaiming "kimochii!" (it feels good!). In the end, it's all good.

Oh, a bonus to today was that when I asked for a pair of scissors I got shown where all the good paper is and - get ready - how to use the cutting machine. Yes, machine. Like, it plugs in and requires a key to operate. I might otherwise expect to find a machine of this caliber in Mr. Kovacs' IA room (that's Industrial Arts or "Shop" to the layperson). It is so sweet. At Intense Elementary School it's always been operated for me. Today a monster was set free. I made sure to use it A LOT today. Well, as much as I could pack in the little free time I had. While I don't intend to abuse my access to it, it and the thick and colored paper available to me there will definitely be put to good use for the purpose of preparing elementary materials. (angels singing)

Peace, McSweeties
(Name that TV reference)

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