Random thoughts, comments, observations and general fluff from a random bint who left London at the end of September 2004 to embark on a new life and new adventures in Tokyo, land of the cute.... and is leaving mid-June 2010 - and counting!

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Students, eh! What'd We Do Without 'em?

So. It's that time of year when kindies start finishing. I've had three kindies a week for the last year (well, two from last summer). One of them can take up to two hours to get to or from if I get my timing wrong. I teach classes of 25 four and five year olds there and have loved it. They're all great kids and it was a fun year teaching them. When I go back to full-time eikaiwa I WILL miss those kinds of classes. Another one was much closer and pretty easy but I didn't get the same buzz from the kids as at the first kindy.

The third kindy was close to here but was an absolute nightmare in terms of the disorganisation of the school. I hated going there and was thrilled on Thursday when I finished the final class.

Yesterday, a student in her late 30s (I think) told me her mother keeps hassling her about not being married yet (she's a flight attendant - not exactly the ideal job to marry and settle down...) and had set her up with a date. He'd turned up with a wig. A curly wig. And a very bad complexion. But she'd kept an open-mind on her first opinion thinking he may have been nice inside. He wasn't. She told me she'd never let her mother set her up with anyone again.

This is actually a pretty common thing here, for unmarried 'kids' in their 30s or 40s to get 'introduced' by their parents to 'suitable' marriage potential. In some cases I feel it may be as much desperation to get the 'kid' to leave home as to get grandchildren...

It's funny how students really can express themselves well, whatever their level, when they really want to. Today a very low level student explained to me that she was married but she wanted a boyfriend. She'd told the same story to another teacher last week. He told me he'd taught her lots of useful language like 'extra-marital affair', etc. I explained what 'serious' or 'fun' in a personal ad meant, what a 'classified ad' was, what JM meant and we talked about speed dating, parental interference, etc!

Today, with a very good level 16-year that I teach, we talked about things you can do to live a long life. There was a listening exercise that talked about the importance of knowing about you families health. I asked her if she knew about her families health and she said, 'I'm going to die of cancer and so is my mother'. At the sight of me doing an impression of a slightly stunned goldfish she clarified that there was lots of it in her family. I hesitantly asked if her mother was okay, and thankfully (as in I didn't want to deal with an awkward situation) the mother is absolutely fine, gets checked once a year, bla bla bla.

Students, eh! (I've mentioned before the joy of studentS telling me their friends/relatives killed themselves, or that their kids have anorexia and what should they do, or how boring they find their husbands, or how they hate their husbands being at home because of how much extra hassle it is for them, etc).

All in a days work though...!


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