So, after the last two days of sitting around and not doing much, today I was let loose on three classes of unfortunate Spanish children.
My first class was with group 5B, who were 10 or 11 years old. Their teacher, Mary Paz, is known for being very strict, and demanding good behaviour.
When I arrived, she made me practice my “dog face” and “growl”, which I am meant to use when the children are being naughty. She then made each of the children come up individually, introduce themselves, ask me my name, say “It’s very nice to meet you”, shake my hand, and then ask me a question of their own. The most popular questions:
- “How old are you?” (Mary Paz told me not to answer, as “It’s very rude to ask that!”),
- “Do you like football?”, and
- “What do you like to do?”
I then had to quiz the kids on their science homework, which was REALLY hard! I mean, they were learning about chlorophyll and cytoplasm and things like that, which seemed pretty advanced.
The second class was 4B, who were 9 years old, and who definitely didn’t have the motivation (or should that be fear?) that Mary Paz’s class had. I had to stand up the front, talk about my country, and then let the children quiz me. The most popular questions:
- “How old are you?” (By now, my self-esteem was plummeting…)
- “Do you have a pet kangaroo?”, and
- “What do people eat in Australia?”
I liked the final class the best because they were SO cute. They were class 1C, and were only 5 years old. They were so, so sweet, and their teacher, Ally, was fantastic. The children spent most of the time speaking in Spanish, rather than English, and when they did that, Ally would tap them on the shoulder with a colourful “English stick”, and make them say it again. Midway through the class, Robby the Rabbit appeared, much to the children’s delight. Robby is a hand-puppet, but the kids seemed to think that he was a real rabbit, and kept yelling at him to be naughty (noticing a theme here?). The most popular questions:
- “How old are you?” (When I asked them to guess, one said 16, which was very nice, whilst another said 80, which wasn’t so great!)
- “Did you travel to Spain in a rocket?”, and
- “Do you speak Spanish?” (I had to lie and say no).
What it’s meant to be like
What it’s actually like
I was totally exhausted after those 2.5 hours, so I don’t know how I’m going to survive a full day of teaching, with 6 different groups, tomorrow…