The Oath

Higher-level English students should know better, and I'm sick and tired of my Level 3 class and their unnecessary Chinese. It's just lazy or rebellious, and I don't approve of either of those behaviors. So I showed them how serious I was today. I made them take an oath, and English-speaking oath. I lined up … Continue reading The Oath

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Teacher’s Block

You know you have teacher's block when... ...student reports were due 12 hours ago and you're still staring at the blank spaces on your computer screen with absolutely no motivation to type ANYTHING. ...the vocabulary words you're required to teach that week BORE you. ...there's a stack of unmarked test papers on your desk that … Continue reading Teacher’s Block

“Teacher, he used me!”

In the Chinese language, the verb used when they are pushed or bumped into or physically bothered by other people gets translated into English as the word use. As a result, the native English speaker is initially confused upon hearing the sentence, "He used me!" This kind of things happens all the time when moving back and forth … Continue reading “Teacher, he used me!”

Child Labor

I'm not a mute or subtle person by any means, so when my dragon boat shoulder (I'm a left sider, so my left shoulder takes the biggest hit) suddenly became mega tight and mega painful, my students noticed. And they heard me verbalize my need for a sledge hammer to just ram right through my … Continue reading Child Labor

5 Little Monkeys

Today was an interesting day of class for me. I actually decided to follow the grammar lesson with an application activity. I usually just keep ploughing through book work, which, I realize, can be detrimental to both students and teacher; so I decided to be intentional this time. Categorize it as a "first semester of … Continue reading 5 Little Monkeys

first day back

Today was the first day back after Chinese New Year Vacation. It was the first day of school in the Year of the Snake. SSSSSSsssssssssssSSS!!! The ssssssssspring ssssemesssssster hasssss begun! (Like that alliterative snake-hiss effect? Wait, I just removed the impact by asking you that, didn't I. Crap.) I immediately discovered that there can no … Continue reading first day back

The Miracle of Education

Something happens when you actually start teaching children. They learn something. It's incredible. In fact, I think it's a miracle! I made mention in an earlier blog of how I was going to paid for watching movies some time soon. Well that time is upon me, and my two weeks of movie-watching with children have begun. … Continue reading The Miracle of Education

Help and its many forms

There are some moments I've experienced in the classroom that I will never forget. It's in these moments that I learn grace. I learn how to be more human. I learn, quite literally, to behave more as an adult. It's a fact: there are times when you're students are just straight-up annoying. The most helpful thing … Continue reading Help and its many forms

The big NO-NOs

Teacher's can't get away with murder - murder in the classroom, anyway. I guess there is that slower, more tortuous form of murder a teacher could be responsible for, a more subliminal kind that comes in the form of evil education... I will admit a teacher is rather formational. Look at all of us today! Just IMAGINE … Continue reading The big NO-NOs

Classroom Commentary Vol. I

These are the kinds of things that keep me alive as a teacher. Violence in the classroom. When the teacher really makes a push for students to do well on quizzes, the students can get quite passionate. Today, when I was checking a quiz, I pointed out to the student that the directions said to … Continue reading Classroom Commentary Vol. I