When everything just goes right - Teaching Euphoria

Today I had one of those rare euphoria days where teaching English actually felt like I was doing the right thing and contributing to the future of some talented and bright minded kids. Where, at the end of the day I take a step back and look at what I’m doing and say…this is good, really good! :slight_smile:

It felt great and gave me a high that lasted all day.

I don’t know what it was, but today I had a class of 6 new students, all 1st year senior high. They just opened up in class and were so involved with the lesson. It was like they couldn’t stop absorbing enough information. They were the picture perfect poster children for what a perfect class should be like.

Thinking on it now, it kind feels a bit like the twilight zone. Its summer, school is out, they are being dragged to class at 8:30 in the morning yet they actually asked if they could stay longer and have me teach them for another hour! :astonished: That was how engrossed they were with the lesson. And I was getting feedback!!! :shocker: Feedback from senior high students!!! I was in a state of shock and awe. Afterwards, one of the students asked me outside the school if I would be willing to spend some one on one time with her in the evenings. Like I said, I am amazed.

Whatever it was that was happening today, I want it to happen again and again and again….

Have you ever had an English teaching day or experience that left you on a high for the whole day?

So it was actually a dream. No self-respecting weigouren English teacher is even awake that early. :sleepy:

You might want to avoid mentioning that to your gf. :wink:

Seriously, I’m glad it’s going well for you.

Good for you Derek. Good for you!

That’s good to hear, Derek. Glad things are going well.

[quote=“derek1978”]Have you ever had an English teaching day or experience that left you on a high for the whole day?[/quote]Often!

Sounds like you’ve already reached your students in just the first day. That’s such a thrilling feeling knowing that not only have you engaged them, but that you have done so when it’s a bit difficult to do so under those circumstances. Are you just teaching them for the summer or for the whole school year?

With this group, it is just for the summer. I hope I can convince them to stay on through their next school year.

One thing did happen that I was not prepared for…kind of…

I was early about 1/2 an hour. While setting up for class, one of my new students came in and sat in our front classroom. I was using our back classroom as it has a great view of the mountains and is a lot cooler and quieter. The rest of the class trickled in, yet she remained in the front class room. I figured maybe she didnt know we were back there, so I introduced myself to her in a very non-threatening casual friendly way and invited her to join us in the other room.

She didnt say a word. She just sat there pertrified in her seat. She looked totally nervous and completely shy. I tried again, and asked if anything was wrong. … silence…no response. Class was now late 5 minutes and the other students were starting to stare through the window. I went and sought the help of our director.

She talked to the girl in Mandarin for about 5 minutes and then came into my class to tell me that the girl had never had a foreign teacher before and was very very shy. She said she was not comfortable being in a class with a foreigner and that she felt the other senior high students were way beyond her in English abilities. She said that she would sit out in the front classroom for the duration of class and read. And if she felt comfortable she would join us.

I gave my students some independant vocabulary review to read and I went back out to talk to the girl. She still wouldnt talk to me, so I didnt push it. In very broken mandarin and english I told her that she was welcome in our class anytime, and that she should come when she was comfortable. If she wanted a one on one class to catch up her on her english, I would be happy to help and see what I could arange with our director. She replied with a dong, following my dong bu dong. And that was the last I spoke to her.

I asked my students if they knew her and none did. They said she was completely new to the school and she didnt go to school with any of them.

What would you do? Do you have any ultra shy students?

It was awkward, but at the same time, I felt sorry for her. I was a bit of a shy kid growing up and didnt fit in with any of my classmates through most of highschool, so I could relate…I just wish tehre was some way I could reach her to get her to open up and join class.

[quote=“derek1978”]What would you do? Do you have any ultra shy students?[/quote]From time to time. It can take a while to get them speaking. And while of course you need to be kind, sometimes you need to be firm as well.

Speak to her mother. I bet her mother doesn’t know she is paying for her daughter to act like a retard. Remember Derek, teacher before friend, especially at Senior High level. You need to get that kid into the classroom quickly. It will send messages to the other students that you can’t manage this situation, if it continues for much longer. She either needs to drop out or grow up. She is 16 years old after all!

I suggest giving her some ‘pre-class’ work, send it home way before the class, then she will know whats gonna happen in the class and won’t feel so fazed. Don’t leave her sittin…