|Some of our Year 7s working away|
We also teach Senior I classes in preparation for the American SAT exam and they are around year 10 age. (I have a boy called Lazy and a girl called Coocy in that class). Their English is a lot better so you can talk to them quite easily and organise debates in class which is quite interesting. We also take two Senior II classes (Year 11/12). We were told that our objective with this class was to “force them to speak English and broaden their horizons” because they are the slightly “geeky” classes. But, even though most of them wear glasses, they are not geeky and are actually pretty good/confident at speaking English. We can teach/do whatever we like with them as long as it is ‘English themed’, so in a few weeks we are hoping to teach them rounders and netball!
|Some Year 7 blackboard artwork|
Taking the various classes for the first time was great but a little overwhelming as they liked to clap as you walked in and as you left but that has kind of stopped now as the novelty of us being here has worn off slightly! We were told by our mentor that the Grade 7s like our classes which is great and we were also told that male teachers cannot touch the female students at all (pretty normal we thought), but he went on to say that with the boys it’s ok..you can slap them or kick them, “whatever you like!”. It did make us chuckle a little!
There are a couple of things that we find rather extraordinary while wondering around our new Chinese high school. The first is when our students greet us in the corridor. They will say “hello teacher” and either do, what I can only describe as, a Nazi type salute and raise their arm in the air, or they will bow very low whilst walking and look like they are about to topple over. It is a sign of respect but rather strange and amusing at the same time. Some also do the old fashioned wave accompanied by a giggle. Secondly, we often wonder around the school and see the students standing in rows and columns moving to the sound of a man over a megaphone. At school the students must attend morning and afternoon exercise classes. I think this is to wake them up as they are at school from 8am every morning and sometimes do not go home until 8pm at night. Naturally some are not as enthusiastic about this as others!
|All ready for 9 days of military fun...|