I’m going to try my best to post every day, but I might forget. I’m doing well so far, and hopefully I can keep that going.
#4 The Students
I could actually break this one down into so many parts. The elementary kids are awesome, the JHS kids are awesome, and different schools are varying levels of pure awesomeness. For now, I’ll just say the students in general, and later on maybe I will expand on a few of my favorites :)
Essentially the kids here are energetic, enthusiastic, and usually try their hardest at stuff. Most of my students aren’t as painfully shy as some other Japanese students, so it makes teaching English a blast. They have a lot of gumption too, so it’s great fun.
And, this photo was taken from Aratani Elementary School, which is a post in itself :)
#3: My JTE (Japanese Teacher of English)
Boy, have I heard horror stories of JTEs. They ignore you, they treat you poorly, they don’t give you any time ahead to prepare, etc., etc. I’m truly one of the lucky ALTs who has a really great JTE. She’s become very much a friend, and has been very accommodating in helping me develop as a teacher. Her English isn’t perfect, but she really enjoys using it. I think passion is the most important thing over skill no matter what you do, and it always makes the difference in the end.
Plus, her husband is the awesome PE teacher, and her daughter is the cutest 4-year-old ever.
#2: The Scenery
Another great thing about Morotsuka is the stunning scenery. I’ve never lived in a place so beautiful in my life.
When it’s sunny, the air is fresh and clean, the sunshine warm, and the water of the rivers is clear and sparkling.
When it’s rainy, mist sits on the mountains and trails off from the rivers. A beautiful hush seems to fill the area, and a sort of peace seems to filter in.
Lately, I’ve been kinda bummed out about staying a third year. So I decided I would try to do something where every day I post one thing that’s awesome about my village or my schools so I can try to appreciate it better.
#1: The JHS Vice-Principal
This dude never ceases to make me laugh. I don’t even think he tries to be funny, but unless there’s some serious topic, he’s usually hilarious. For example, just today there was a spider running around on my desk, and I jumped. When he asked me what was wrong, I told him in Japanese that there was a spider. Then he says in English: “Spider? Spider Man?” And then he starts imitating Spider Man. I kind of didn’t know what to do next because I was so confused. So as he starts looking for where the spider went, I just told him it was all right and not to worry about it. And that was the end of that.
I did end up seeing the spider later on and flicked it off my desk.
April 17, 2013
Today I was super sleepy because of the rain, but I perked myself up when I had to lead the first eikaiwa class of the school year. I was super nervous, especially since I didn’t know how many students would show.
Well, I had a huge surprise in store for me.
One of the new teachers in town lived for a year and a half in the United States, and her daughter was in kindergarten for that time. So, she brought her daughter to the elementary school eikaiwa. Today’s lesson was “My name is,” and uh…. yeah, she didn’t need to learn it or practice it. Not to mention I pretty much could speak to her entirely in English and she responded with no issues. I mean, without a second thought, she used grammar that students here don’t learn until high school. Meanwhile the other students in the class are at the basic English level of 6-7 year olds who’ve lived in Japan their whole lives.
So, how do I plan an english lesson for such vast level differences? I’m nervous, excited, and confused all at the same time.
Wish me luck!
I enjoyed the ceremony, but when people started to give really long speeches….