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Author Topic: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)  (Read 6919 times)

Fozzwaldus

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #15 on: February 06, 2012, 09:23:33 AM »
stuttering and sweating are all good, you'll only do that once and never have to worry about it again... you can even make a joke about it.

running out of things to say, well, that shouldn't be an issue if you've planned a good intro lesson that isn't based around you talking anyway.

here's one I've been churning out for nearly ten years, never fails to get 'em chatting.

1. Teacher Intro

put 5 answers to Qs about you on the board, have the student shout out the questions.

e.g. 27 (How old are you?)

make them progressively more cryptic, I like to end with a woman's name, Wendy, that has them guessing all sorts of relations to me (girlfriend etc etc), but in fact it's the name of a pet turtle that I had in Xi'an in 2005.

Silly, but it breaks the ice.

2. Student Pairwork Intro

Ss do the same thing. First they have 5 mins to write 5 answers to Qs about themsleves, secretly, on a piece of paper, then they swap answers with a partner and try to guess each others questions.

Tell them in advance to make them a little tricky if possible, and to make note of their partners Q+A, because in the end they will have to introduce their partner to the class.

Depending on the size of your group, that is a nice 50 minute class period, with techer-performing time cut down to introductions and explanations.

ONce you get this first class out of the way you will have an idea of their level, and you won't be nearly as nervous standing up in front of them again.
 
两只老外, 两只老外,跑得快,跑得快,
一个是老酒鬼,一个是老色鬼,真奇怪, 真奇怪

The Local Dialect

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #16 on: February 06, 2012, 09:39:26 AM »
My advice is that for the first class, plan more activities than you'll actually end up needing. That way if something is a bust, the students don't cooperate and an activity that you planned on taking up 20 minutes of classtime fizzles out and is finished after 5 minutes (and this does happen, so irritating!) then you will have a backup plan.


Playdough

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #17 on: February 06, 2012, 07:39:11 PM »
I'm definitely going to have backups, LD.  I'm so nervous I'll probably plan 3 hours of material for this first one.  

Fozz, that's a great idea.  I was thinking maybe I could bring in some pictures to go along with the words I write on the board.  Maybe a pic of my mom, a pic of me doing a hobby, a pic of my state, etc.  I could hand them out one by one as the students guess them.  Might eat up some extra time and make them a little more interested in me.  

Playdough

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #18 on: February 06, 2012, 07:42:54 PM »
BTW, are people interested in martial arts and boxing in China?  Could I mention stuff like that about myself without making people uncomfortable or looking like a douche?  I have some pics of me training and fighting that they might find interesting or funny. 
« Last Edit: February 06, 2012, 07:49:21 PM by Playdough »

ericthered

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #19 on: February 07, 2012, 12:27:57 AM »
As other members have said, get an e-reader (I recommend a Kindle).

If you have any idea of what you are going to teach, gather materials. For instance, if you know you have to teach British/American Culture, make use of the fact that you are not behind the GFW and download pictures, texts for class.

If you have pictures of you doing martial arts, bring them and use them as an ice-breaker in class. China is, after all, the home of Gong Fu and I can assure you your students will not be scared, on the contrary, they will think you are ever so cool. Be ready for gasps, the ever-present sound "Wahhhh" and the words "Tai Li Hai" which means very strong/capable.  agagagagag agagagagag
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Fozzwaldus

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #20 on: February 07, 2012, 01:59:05 AM »
I'm definitely going to have backups, LD.  I'm so nervous I'll probably plan 3 hours of material for this first one.  

Fozz, that's a great idea.  I was thinking maybe I could bring in some pictures to go along with the words I write on the board.  Maybe a pic of my mom, a pic of me doing a hobby, a pic of my state, etc.  I could hand them out one by one as the students guess them.  Might eat up some extra time and make them a little more interested in me.  

pics are a very good idea, if your classroom has a computer and a projector you could make a slideshow to go along with your answers, this way they can all ooh and ahh in unison.

make sure to post again and let us know how it goes!
两只老外, 两只老外,跑得快,跑得快,
一个是老酒鬼,一个是老色鬼,真奇怪, 真奇怪

Pashley

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #21 on: February 07, 2012, 02:18:09 AM »
BTW, are people interested in martial arts and boxing in China?

Just a little.

Quote
Could I mention stuff like that about myself without making people uncomfortable or looking like a douche?  I have some pics of me training and fighting that they might find interesting or funny. 

Yes, and training here would be a fine way to meet people. Look in public parks early in the morning. For example, in Fuzhou's Wu Yi Park, I found a couple of dozen groups practicing a wide variety of styles. Mostly unarmed, but some sword and staff.
Who put a stop payment on my reality check?

Playdough

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #22 on: February 07, 2012, 03:59:56 AM »
Thank you guys!  Another question: should I expect to be put on the spot at some sort of assembly or ceremony when I get there?  I've heard of some people being forced to do some kind of performance on the fly, like a dance or sing or whatever.  That sounds fucking awful.  What should I do if it comes to that?  I can't dance or sing for shit.

Fozzwaldus

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #23 on: February 07, 2012, 04:13:46 AM »
don't count on it, it never happened to me. if it does happen, just refuse politely, make an excuse like you 'feel uncomfortable' which in China means you feel unwell, i.e. headache.
两只老外, 两只老外,跑得快,跑得快,
一个是老酒鬼,一个是老色鬼,真奇怪, 真奇怪

Escaped Lunatic

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #24 on: February 07, 2012, 06:43:19 AM »
Thank you guys!  Another question: should I expect to be put on the spot at some sort of assembly or ceremony when I get there?  I've heard of some people being forced to do some kind of performance on the fly, like a dance or sing or whatever.  That sounds fucking awful.  What should I do if it comes to that?  I can't dance or sing for shit.

Most schools require new FTs to attend a school assembly on the first day.  During that, you'll be brought up on stage, stripped naked, and forced to do an interpretive dance to the most recently released speech from a member of the CCP's Central Committee.

While doing that, just remind yourself that at least they didn't make you sing. ahahahahah
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Sam Smith

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #25 on: February 08, 2012, 12:54:05 AM »
 bkbkbkbkbk
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gonzo

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #26 on: February 08, 2012, 01:16:44 AM »
Just remember that the amount of learning that happens in an EFL classroom has an inverse relationship to the amount of talking the teacher does. Chinese students love teacher talk, because they don't actually have to do anything, even listen, if they're not in the mood.
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Playdough

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Re: What Should I Be Doing to Prepare? (1 Month Out)
« Reply #27 on: February 08, 2012, 03:23:15 AM »
haha, some funny replies, thanks guys.  glad to hear i most likely won't have to do a performance.  the schools give you some time to settle in as a teacher, right?  I just have this image in my head of a the dean telling me after one week, "You no good, sorry, you go home."  i get the feeling that even as a newb teacher im still going to be hard to replace, given the remoteness and awful winters of the town im going to.