If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get where you’ve always got

FIRST DAY AT MY SCHOOL:
Last Monday Lindas teacher picked Linda and me up and took us to her school. I didn’t know until then that I was going to go to my new school today. I was at Lindas school for about 2 hours until my principal came and picked me up. His English surprised me, it was good (I know it sounds mean but I that’s how it is). On the way to school he asked many questions about me and my family. I was really happy since my first impression was really positive. At school, I met the other teachers. All of them were able to ask me who I am, where I am coming from and how long I am gonna stay for. It was such a good feeling to know that I could talk to them with a little English and a little Thai if I needed something. When we went for lunch in the cafeteria all the kids stared at me. Every kid was interested in who I am so they smiled. A moment I will never forget.
Luckily my principal is a really nice and caring man so he asked me what kind of food I like and what kind I am not able to eat so all the teachers and especially the cook knows what I am able to eat and what I like.
Lunch was nice because the teachers tried to integrate me right away. They asked questions and tried to explain school stuff to me.
I spent the rest of the day in teacher’s lounge because I had no class that day. THANK GOD! That would’ve been too much for the first day.
A teacher gave me my schedule and some books so I had the chance to prepare the lessons for the following day.
Preparing them wasn’t that difficult because it was second, third and fourth grade and my principal gave me hints about topics I could teach. I was excited for my first day teaching because I was so surprised in such a positive way. Probably becausen I went to the school that day with no expectations.

Later that day our adviser came over and told us a bit about some rules for our apartment and living together in a group.

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TUESDAY – FIRST DAY TEACHING:

My first day teaching started with a weird feeling in my stomach. I didn’t sleep well and I just had a bad morning by myself. I tried to cheer up but it was more difficult than I thought. However, I had to focus because my principal was supposed to pick me up at 10:30 AM. I was really nervous and I tried to hide my bad mood and condition. He could tell that I was nervous and he tried to calm me down. He told me that I should just trust that I can do this. I tried.
I was about 2 hours before class at school. I went online and then for lunch in the cafeteria. After lunch, I had my first class. Grade 2 or as they say here “Pratom 2”. I didn’t know on which level they will be so I started easy: with the alphabet and the numbers. As long as I went through the alphabet and numbers by order they were able to tell me the answer and repeat what I am saying but when I pointed to a specific number or letter the most of them couldn’t answer. When I said “Please write it down” they did not understand me. It was really difficult not to freak out and think of a way to make them understand what I wanted. Gladly a Thai teacher was sitting in the back and he helped me at the start but then he focused on his computer and I was on my own again. It was an exhausting hour and I knew it will be difficult the next times I will teach there. And not to think of grade 1.
My second class was grade 3 and I went through the same easy things as in grade 2.
They had no problem with the alphabet or the numbers from 1-10 but starting from 11 they had difficulties so I this class focused on the numbers from 11 to 20. I went through the numbers, let them repeat them and copy them down. Furthermore, we played a little game called “vocabulary soccer” which they loved. Maybe they loved it a little too much because they were running through the classroom, being noisy and a little cheeky. I tried to control the situation by not continuing the game until they behaved.
It was a better class than my first one that day but it still wasn’t easy. They still had difficulties to understand my orders and what they have to do. But since the game went well in a way that at least the kids enjoyed it and maybe even learned something I was in a little better mood than before.

My last class for the day was grade 4. I tried to teach them family vocabulary which worked a little better. With some time it even worked to explain to them how Bingo works. After explaining and playing it for a while I realized that the kids did not like this game as much as I thought.

So to sum up:
The kids were incredibly cute but the first day was really difficult for me. It is difficult to stand in front of a class who does not understand you and talks to you in a language you don’t understand. Of course, I had good moments that day but the bad ones definitely outweighed them. I knew it was only my first day but I my expectations were too high I guess. I don’t want to make it sound like everything was bad but I stupidly just focused on that.
With this mood I went home and I was really happy that I had many people there that I could talk to. Some had the same kind of day and some had an amazing day. Both stories helped me to understand why my day went the way it went.
In the evening I was more than happy to talk to my boyfriend. It made my whole world seem better again and with new strength I was ready for the next and mostly for a BETTER day. 🙂

The next day was a great! 🙂
(coming soon!)


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