Last Friday was a very good day for me: it was the last day of Winter Camp at school, and the start of a 5 week holiday. So it’s not surprising that I was in a pretty good mood. But, distracting me from my happiness was the horrible feeling of an entirely achey body, eyes which would barely stay open, and a general ill-feeling. Why? Because after 10 days of Winter Camp, I was exhausted.
I try to engage the students as much as possible with questions, and I also found setting up the material works well. Before we get into the book I brainstorm with them about the topic and play a short video for them to get the connections visually. This really helped when we were going to make a craft based upon cavemen wall paintings. The video showed the wall paintings from Lascaux in France, and the students were quite impressed.
I admit I miss the days of designing the whole camp and having "cooking" and other themes that were more hands on fun. But you make due with what you got!
Those last five days of winter camp went really fast! Thankfully I had prepared enough before camp to jump into it without that dreaded feeling of, "What do I do?" At my school camp is from 8:50 - 12:10, with various breaks in between. Most of what we teach is academic, like Science and Reading, but there are also fun stuff like a Drama unit and Museum unit.
My 4th and LAST English Winter camp ended today! This was the first time in 4 years that I was asked to teach 1st and 2nd graders and I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a bit freaked out! I only teach 3rd-6th graders during the school year, so I knew these little munchkins wouldn't know a lick of English and would have to be fully trained (yes, trained!)!
January is going to be a month with Winter Camp, a week off and then back to regular work. I'm looking forward to camp, that starts next week. For one I miss the kiddos and also it's my last camp. I have the high levels this time with a few spunky kids in it that are really fun to be around. So I can't wait to get all goofy and giggly with these kids. I know that teaching and being in the classroom is going to be what I will miss the most when I leave.
It's a freezing start to January and still lots of winter weeks ahead before things could potentially warm up. But I seem to be doing well staying warm this winter with my fantastic Marmot down coat I bought a few years ago. It helps to have a reliable coat, hat, scarf, boots and mittens to last through this season. I can't help but say I'm looking forward to the endless rain in Seattle, because at least it doesn't get too cold there!
Wow! Camp has come and gone in what feels like the blink of an eye. However, I can say I'm pleased with that reality. Camp this time around (compared to last summer) was a bit easier. I think it is because I had the higher level class, although at times they started to test me.
There is one week left and on next Friday the parents come to see their presentations. Then I've got one week vacation for the Lunar New Year. I'll just close my eyes and soon it will be February and before you know it I'll be visiting my family in Florida.
Other than this there isn't much to report. Still working on my lesson plans but slowly, as I have been trying to get materials made.
Things have been running smoothly in camp land. Although, I can already feel myself and the students starting to get tired of each other. But I have been trying to spice things up with extra games I have lying around and let them have extended free time. It makes me wonder as next year they will cut camp down to 2 weeks. Things will definitely fly by then!
This Winter Camp I have the high level kids and on the one hand it is a relief they aren't as wacky as the low levels, but on the other they argue with me about everything. "Teacher, but I answered the question so give me a sticker!" "No, teacher you are wrong!" (That last one gets spit out quite often.)
After three days into this year's Winter Camp I have finally found the time to come home after classes and get back to lesson plan creation. I have now started on the 2nd semester for next year. Given the first week of planning wasn't too bad as that will just be fluff stuff till we start the book again.
I got out and saw some nice places, one of which was the beauty that can be found on Jeju Island.
Wow! It is the end of 2011 already. I'm 30, single and the battery to my wireless mouse just died. This past year was marked by mild discoveries and accomplishments. For one I finally found a school I am comfortable working at and also a neighborhood that is nice to live in.