Thursday, September 20, 2012

Day 37: Teaching... Just kidding. Playing.

Got to be honest, I kind of love teaching. And I thoroughly enjoy teaching the older Elementary 2 students. I like my other kids, don't get me wrong, but there is something about this class that has more "AHA, I get it!" moments. Moments when the kids understand what's being said or what's going on. More moments where they connect with each other. Like I've said before, it's why I teach. Even though sometimes lessons epically fail and kids think you're the most boring teacher ever....
But you wanna know how I beat that? I draw cartoons (My kids sometimes get to draw too...) This week we were talking about punctuation. Fun right? It is when your characters are awesome like mine! We've got the "hipster comma", the big fat period, the EXCLAMATION POINT! and the Strong Shouting Question. I made up the hipster comma but the others were mostly made up by the other kids. They told me what to write in the speech boxes. 

You should have been there for last week's drawing. I had wrestling characters and was quoting Nacho Libre. There was "Sentence" who was complete, "Fragment" who was missing a few limbs and an eye, and "Crazy Steve" to represent those sentences that just plain don't make sense. They were epic as well. Should have taken a picture... 

The things we think of to go along with our lessons are quite fun too! I am finding now that I will save ANYTHING thinking that maybe I can use it in my classroom. Right now I'm collecting bottle caps for future balloon race cars. For these beauties, I cut up cereal boxes and let the kids draw what they wanted on their shields. We're reading the "Ballad of Mulan" currently, so making armor is essential when you're going to war, no? I was Captain Mushu, bravely fighting side by side with, not one, but TWO Captain Americas, as well as one Captain Ka-Pow. I love lessons like this because there is so much language learning, and the kids didn't even know it. I didn't even realize it till I was thinking about it later. Yay, learning through fun!

Today I took one of the crafts I made home. As soon as I pulled it out of my bag, my little sister gasped and ran over to me saying "dame!" (give it to me). In my broken Spanish I tried to ask what it's name should be. She said a lot of things, none of which I can recall. I tried to suggest "panda" (because hey, it's a panda and she needs to apparently learn more English according to mi mama) but she wasn't havin' it. She did let me take her picture with it. Actually, as soon as I pulled the camera out, she started posing with the panda. It was quite adorable. Unfortunately, she was moving so fast (I seriously need a video of her running around everywhere) that I only got one sort of good picture. Success enough for me!

And that's pretty much it. 

I like it down here. I'm grateful I got to come to Mexico and volunteer for these children. I'm also very grateful for mi familia. As we're learning to communicate, I'm finding that it gets a little easier everyday to understand each other. It's a good thing. It's a little funny because now mi mama is even saying small English words like "house" and "school". So proud of her! :D And I'm learning to speak better Spanish with her. I'm still really slow and can't talk a million miles per hour like they do, but I'm getting there. I'll get there. I'm too determined to fail. Actually I really can't fail. I can only learn more. 

I Love Mexico Like Crazy! 

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