Wednesday, August 20, 2008

She's still a teacher

My friend Garnett called me last week about "helping" a friend with her ESL (English Second Language) class for adults. I told her I'd be glad to help, as long as all that entailed was sitting in the classroom while the other woman taught. Okay. That lasted one night.

Tuesday, I taught a class solo. I have the very beginning students, those who know enough English to tell me their name and where they are from--maybe. Other than that, their English is still better than my Spanish (which is the only second language in this particular class). Last week we worked on "Hello, my name is_____." We also worked on the alphabet. Again this week, we worked on "Hello, my name is_____." And the alphabet. Only this week, I kept getting more students.

We started out with 4 or 5, but by the time the class was over, there were 9 in there. Class started at 7 (actually a few minutes after that). A supervisor came in for a few minutes and seemed to wonder why I hadn't started yet. I told her we were on Hispanic time. She understood perfectly, laughed, and left. Like I said, several others came in as the class went on. About 8:10, a second supervisor brought in the 8th student and said, "I promise, no more new people." This fellow had been in another classroom, but the instructor had quickly gathered that he wasn't ready for her class yet. The supervisor said, "He needs to be in your class." I said, "Are you sure?" He replied, "Oh, yes, he needs to be in this class." Do I need to tell you I loved it? It wore me out, but I LOVED it.

By the end of the evening, I had committed to teaching on Tuesdays all the school year, I guess. Tonight at church, my friend Macy caught me and asked me, "Do you want to help me teach ESL tomorrow night?" I didn't hesitate very long before I told her sure, as long as she was doing the teaching and I was just sitting in the class...Maybe I should have thought that over, since that was what I did the first time.

A few of my family members who read this blog are going to recognize the person in this next little bit about ESL. Garnett told me she was going to teach a combined class on Thursday night, since Gary had been pestering her for quite a while to bring his tools to class and teach the students the names of all the tools. She and I both looked at each other and laughed--let's just hope that Garnett is the one who actually teaches the names of the tools. Otherwise, I don't know if anyone will be able to understand a word they say.

That's enough for tonight--Goodnight to all, and God bless!

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