Asia | Taiwan, Republic of China – Oral Tests in English language cram school
January 3, 2004
Man oh man. Did I say yesterday that I liked doing oral tests! I think I jinxed myself. This was a hard one to give. There were about 23 students and it took forever to get through the material. Let me see if I remember what we went over. First there was the ‘How are you’ and ‘whats your name’ sentences. These went over quite well. But then we got into ‘Do you want _____?’ and all hell broke loose. I got everything from ‘Yes I am’ to ‘I am 9 years old.’ AHHHHH.
There were two other main parts to the quiz. One was for them to touch their body parts (why does that sound bad!) when I say something like ‘Touch your nose….touch your eyes.’ Most of this was easy enough for them. The one glitch was between arm and leg. Many of the students confused these two. I even had a student touch both at the same time when I asked for arm. Very cute, but I didnt fall for it. I made him do it over.
At this point I didnt think they could be nervous with me still, but after the first few kids I thought just maybe they were. So I brought out the sticky ball (they love this thing) and had them throw it a few times before starting the test. This actually took up too much time cause the kids would look at me like I was nuts. What? I wanted them to play before a test. How dare I! It is really interesting to me how obedient these kids are sometimes.
After that Gogo class oral test I had my very hard to win over Up class. This is the class with the least amount of humor and spunk. Some classes feel like they can run themselves with me just standing there with my red pen and stamps and smiling. This one is the complete opposite. But something happened yesterday. I was probably the least prepared as ever, but they seemed willing to listen and not fall asleep for a change. Maybe it was because I was thinking on my feet (and in a few cases, hardly thinking at all!). I cant blame the kids too much though, this class is from 7-9pm on friday. ewwww.
Anyway, even the skeptical class clown was laughing when I was messing with them on the NEW WORDS section of the class. We were learning -ly verbs and there were some words on the list that were not -LY also. But I thought I would test them, so I said a few non-ly words with -ly at the end. A few of them caught it the first time and more each time I did it with the other non -ly words. The most importantly to me was that they were paying attention and enjoying themselves for a change. I think it is impossible to retain new language information when you are grinding your teeth. But that is just my personal belief.
Trying to find some new games for the classes. Hangman and tick tack toe are getting old as shit. There are a few others built into the lesson plans, but I think finding new ones will liven things up a bit. Now that I am getting more of a handle on the lessons I think I can incorporate games into the material. We’ll see. A bit ambitious for such a newbie like me.
Put a few language exchange request ads on tealit.com and got some responses. Glad they are all women. haha. I am unfortunately starting to think that some men around here are attractive. And to be honest, I really dont want the distraction right now. This doesnt stop me from smiling at them and well, sometimes out and out staring, but oh well. Anyway, I am meeting one woman in about 2 hours (I cant remember her name! Think it is Karen) and another woman tomorrow (her name is Kathy). What I said in the ad is that I can help with their English if they help me with little things like learning how to find basic things. I have a small list for today that goes something like this:
1. how to know where the parking and no parking areas for scooters are
2. How to order smaller portions of food here. Everything comes with so many side dishes and loads of rice or noodles
3. how to find and attend local cultural events like live theatre, musical performances and art stuff.
4. Chinese names for non-iced tea drinks
5. hair conditioner. I thought I learned this one from Sydney, but I didnt write it down and ended up buying shampoo again. How much shampoo can one person own?
6. Bleach. for my floor.
I dont think we’ll get to all this today. I am not even sure how good her English is, these are just things I need to figure out soon before I go mad. It is crazy how the easiest things can take forever to do when you are this clueless!
Rennee’s Happy New Year Homework wish
Joel and Ray calling this morning.