In 90 minutes I'll have a group of 8 Five year olds and their moms come over for a sample lesson.
Basically everyone has decided already to join~but that doesn't take the pressure away.
Sample lessons are important: atmosphere, my voice, the lesson plan~ well, I always care about these more than 100%, still for a sample lesson it is even more.
So, I got everything ready~
TPR warm up
What's your name (with a silly quiz, using famous dolls to make the kids laugh a lot)
And a very quick Superhero in the end.
30 minutes~ just enough to want more!
The kids can choose a sticker for their brand-new passport, and then they can play on their own with a huge box of Kapla blocks, while I talk to the moms.
It can be amazing, what kind of questions come up here~but I must say meanwhile I am getting good at this.
When and how do you hold your sample classes?
What do you care about most?
OK, I should sit back and relax for the biggest smile in a while~ and then:
I'll be off on a holiday to the sweet and beautiful Ishigaki Island.
I can't believe to not have to freeze for a few days!
Yesterday we had our second easter craft class. 10 kids from 11-13.
Have a look at the photos on the Japanese blog!
And tomorrow there'll be more great pieces of art!
So, yesterday I had my first group of 18! 7-10 year olds.
We had two hours to draw on and decoupage those eggs the kids (no sorry~moms!) had blown out at home.
I had planned to also make some easy nests and still thought to play outside for 30 minutes with out chocolate eggs.
However~ each kid needed my hand, so unfortunately I was not able to take one single photo.
Today I have a group of 12 year olds, so probably things will go easier.
And tomorrow, my photographer is so kind to come and take some pictures for us.
It's all about eggs around easter.
Even in our Adult's English Class the topic came up.
We watched this video, and everyone explained it in English.
Then one student decided to go for it, and tried the experiment at home.
He showed us the result yesterday:
Homework for next week: Make some colored "bouncing, rubber eggs"!
Last week it was still snowing, but Easter is right there.
As always it falls on a day during Japanese Spring vacation~the busiest time of year for everyone here, as a new school year begins, teachers are transferred and everything changes.
So, we hold our Easter lessons a bit early, in the last week of March.
Usually this event is a variety of quick communication games, where kids can score little eggs, or use eggs to play, and a big crafting session.
The kids love it: being creative, drawing on eggs, egg hunting. It is so much fun.
We hold 4 events a year:
Performance in Summer, Halloween, Christmas and Easter. This is well balanced timing; the kids are eager and motivated to learn in between and they always know: a few weeks, months ahead they will have another fun event.
Of course for me as a teacher the goal is not to make it only fun, but to have them learn about and experience a different culture.
And last, for the parents it is an occasion to watch their kid's improvement (of many different skills: speaking, listening, social, musical, etc)
My mom's homework this week is to blow out eggs~and everyone is pretty excited about it.
Hope to put up some pictures next week.
BTW, it would be great if we'd had some fotos of everyone's easter eggs.
I bet the patterns and drawings are different from country to country?!
Thank you all so much for your collaboration.
We are really running at a great pace. Here is a completely new project again:
Julia's students in Russia send us this cute letter "Let's be friends", and we responded right away.
I thought you might like to hear a little Japanese, so I had them sing the Jump rope chant in Japanese.
Thank you also for your comments here on the blog and per mail.
Everyone's been asking me, how I found my contacts. I think it is easy. Look at the GE website (best on the VIP Forum), and get in touch with one of the thousands of teachers there. The choice of countries is big. And right now there is a thread of people looking for video exchange schools.
Well, do have a look at this new video letter.
And, please let us know what you think of these amazing jump rope skills. I have been watching Japanese kids for 20 years now, but I still don't know how they do this.
My eyes just cannot follow.
I've had so many requests over the years to write down my experience and ideas about teaching, education and living in Japan and I've been wondering how to answer to these.
Blogging since 2010, it's been all in Japanese; my website includes lots of videos and fotos, so I think everyone can get something out of it, but finally I got the simple idea to just add an English blog to it.
I really hope I can make it into something you'll enjoy and it would be great to receive your comments and ideas, too.
This year has started wonderful, as far as "international connections" and projects are concerned.
For today let me just link you to our completely new video exchanges with
Poland, Russia and Spain.
France might be waiting around the corner, too.
Waiting for your comments and requests.