Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Great Day

I am having a great day today!

First Class: English Conversation for Juniors (2nd Year's)

The topic of today's class was "Future Hopes/Dreams." I borrowed the idea for the warm-up game from Rogue, the ALT in Tenri.

Warm-Up: Pairs of students come to the front of the classroom. Students stand with hands poised in Western style as though they are about to draw guns. I show them an occupation picture card. The first student to shout the occupation on the card and raise their hands like guns is the winner. Sounds silly right? The kids LOVED it! I called on volunteers who could then challenge another to "combat." The boys got really into it. Instead of drawing simple pistols, some drew bazookas, bow & arrow, etc. Even the losing player's death was dramatic. Some kids did a simple "touch the chest" move. Others fully acted like they had gotten shot. My favorite moment was the last fight. The winning student "shot" the losing student after yelling the right occupation. Except this time, the losing student did a matrix-style maneuver to dodge the "bullets." HYSTERICAL.

In another fight, one student thought he had won, but the girl he challenged managed to squeak out the answer before he did. He was angry because he didn't hear her so he thought he won. In a hilarious act of emotion, he jumped, slammed his feet, and said (in Japanese), "She's too damn quiet!" We all laughed. Then an idea was hatched by one of my more vocal students. They all collectively decided that in their next class (Classical Japanese), instead of bowing at the start of class, they would jump, slam their feet, and say "She's too damn quiet!" Just to make sure the kids followed through, I-sensei and I went to their next class with them and watched through the window. There are only 20 kids in my conversation class because we split them up. Storm takes the other half. In their Classical Japanese class, all 40 are together.

Now imagine all the students standing, ready to give their bow to the teacher. One student shouts the instigating word "De!" 20 students bow. 20 students jump, slam their feet, and shout "She's too damn quiet!" I've never seen I-sensei laugh so hard in my life.

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