Archive for the ‘numbers’ Category

Grandmother Teacher

Friday, April 13th, 2012

Class 2.5 is nuts. They always are to some degree, but it was raining today which means they can’t go running around outside which just sort of adds to the insanity. Today in class we practiced speaking and recognizing large numbers. After finishing up the lesson I gave a lecture on why knowing your numbers in English is important.

“Okay class, understand?”
“YES SIR!”
“What?! I’m not a SIR. Do I look like a man?”
“No, sorry. Sorry. Um… what do we say for woman?”
“You can just say ‘yes teacher.’ We sometimes say ‘ma’am’, but we really only use that for 아줌마.”
“You are an 아줌마.”
“WHAT? No I’m not!”
“No. You are an 아저씨.”
“No I’m not! Do I look like an 아저씨?”
“Okay fine, 할머니.”
“chhhh, guys, really?”

Then after class I chatted with some students as I was packing up my things, and upon turning around I saw that a student had snuck up behind me and had written on the chalkboard “grandmother” with an arrow pointing to me.

“I AM NOT A GRANDMA! Seriously, how old do you all think I am?”
“Eighty. No wait. Nine-hundred-and-ninety-million-nine-hundred-and-ninety-nine-thousand-nine-hundred-and-ninety-nine years old.”

Well. They learned their numbers at least.

The Price is Right… again

Sunday, November 27th, 2011

Like I said a few blog entries ago I’m doing the Price is Right with my students to practice big numbers and prices, and it’s been going surprisingly well.  I thought it’d be too easy for them, but they’ve been getting really into the cultural aspects (I’ve been showing pictures of coins and explaining who each person is, the name of the coin, the value in both dollars and won, explaining the buildings, and also the symbols and America’s motto). It’s also been really nice to see my lowest level kids, who granted are not low level at all, really break out of their comfort zone and shout out the answers to things.

The way that second and third grade students are divided into homerooms is based on whether they’re 이과 (Egwa – science) or 문과 (Mungwa – society). If they’re science track, they take a lot more math and science courses, and if they’re society they study language and social studies more. It’s very strange to see where students fall on either side of that line because some of my best English speakers are science track, including Future Diplomat… However, there are some programs (for example, some of the top university’s medical programs) that will only take students who were science track in high school, no matter how high a society track kid’s math and science suneung scores are. However, I haven’t heard of any liberal arts college program turning away science track kids for this reason… it therefore makes more sense regardless of your actual interests to be science track in high school, especially if you want to keep your options open. As someone who is obviously a liberal arts/social studies/society fiend, this makes me really sad.

One thing I’ve noticed with the second grade society track boys is they all have a strange fondness for using German, at least in English class. Something that distinguishes Changpyeong High School from other high schools (at least, that I know of) is the amount of foreign language offered at school. Sapgyo only had English and Japanese, and hanja (the study of Chinese characters – not the language itself). I’ve had numerous students speak German to me as a joke, and today by the end of class four teams had switched from English numbers to German numbers. “Team 1″ had switched to “Team Eins” so I started calling them Einsteins, which made them giggle. I totally would’ve been that kid in high school. <3 문과