We got our level testing done and unfortunately not much was changed in one class that needed it. However, the rest of the groups seem to be doing all right. A handful of students dropped out of my school, a few of which I was happy and sad to see go. There are some empty spots and I'm sure they will fill them up quick.
The first week of the Fall semester has flown by, and was all right. I started things off by giving one of our homeroom teacher's a gift for her baby. It was a nice soft blanket I found at a baby store. She was very surprised to get it from me. This is her first baby and I thought I would give her a gift to celebrate such an occasion. Later on in the week she came up to me in the lunch room and told me that her son slept very well with the blanket I gave her.
Today I completed my second time of open classes at my current school. When I went through this last year I was way more nervous. I really wanted to make a good impression last year, and so rolled out high energy and a lot of activities. This year, I was still a little nervous but seemed to calmly get through it.
I made it! The last week of my first year at S* school is coming to it's end. I am amazed I made it this far considering how difficult it was at the beginning. Also I am impressed at how much my students have advanced and grown. Now I get to see them continue to grow in the 2nd grade.
I noticed something the other day while teaching my winter camp classes, and that is Korean kids love Youtube just as much as kids back home. Of course, this should come as no surprise as Korea is a very wired country. But I think seeing videos in the classroom has been a part of their lives since they started school. I for one have used a multitude of math-song videos and for fun, played those cutesy and catchy ones that get their attention.
An excellent evolution has occurred with the use of video in the classroom, and that is teachers making educational videos with their students. The forum waygook.org has already shown areas where teachers are integrating a video-creating lesson into their classes. Also, you catch teacher made videos on youtube with some that are awesome and others quite simple. Here for you are an example of teachers taking the video camera in the classroom and making it a fun tool for English education.
Wow! Camp has come and gone in what feels like the blink of an eye. However, I can say I'm pleased with that reality. Camp this time around (compared to last summer) was a bit easier. I think it is because I had the higher level class, although at times they started to test me.
I picked up this game from working at public Elementary schools. One of my Korean coteachers introduced me to this board game called, "Omok". The game is similar to tic-tac-toe or 5-in-a-row. Basically the students take turns picking squares. They practice whatever they see in the square by speaking or working out a problem. If correct they get to claim that square and their goal is to get 5 in a row.
There is one week left and on next Friday the parents come to see their presentations. Then I've got one week vacation for the Lunar New Year. I'll just close my eyes and soon it will be February and before you know it I'll be visiting my family in Florida.
Other than this there isn't much to report. Still working on my lesson plans but slowly, as I have been trying to get materials made.
Things have been running smoothly in camp land. Although, I can already feel myself and the students starting to get tired of each other. But I have been trying to spice things up with extra games I have lying around and let them have extended free time. It makes me wonder as next year they will cut camp down to 2 weeks. Things will definitely fly by then!
Since the start of this recent semester I realized that these kids need extra study aids to get them through all the English math jargon. Also, it was starting to pester me that they kept on mistaking the word square for circle.
As I am planning for next year I am continuing on my path to make study guides. The above is the one I recently made for the fractions chapter. Now I must admit that I am actually a math dummy. However, I did very well during my math classes in college, mostly because I found algebraic formulas fascinating.