Sunday, 25 March 2012

Momentos graciosos en clase parte 2

Here are some more of the highlights (or lowlights, depending on how you see it) of my attempts to educate los españoles. Happy Sunday!

Playing Scatergorries (a game where students need to think of words corresponding with a certain letter)

Letter C

Me: 'Girls, what's your verb?'
Student: 'Cock'
Me: 'Sorry, what?'
Student: 'Cock'
* I go over to the desk to see that they have written the word 'cook' *
Me: 'Ahhhh, you mean cook. Be careful with your pronunciation, “cock” means “polla”'
    *Cue 10 13 year olds laughing loudly, one girl gasping that she always asks for 'Cock-a-Cola' and the majority of the students shouting 'cock!', 'cock!', 'cock!' for the rest of the lesson. This was when I realised it's better just to correct and move on.*

Adjective: Close

I gave two students 2 points for the word 'close', assuming they meant to write the word for 'cerca.' But then it became apparent that they had wanted to say 'closed' and had written it wrongly. So the deal was they'd only get their points if they could tell me how to say 'cerrado' in English, which I told them was very similar to the word 'close.' The answer they volunteered was 'klose.' Nil points.

A girl's name:  Claire

This was accompanied by an extremely creepy 'porque siempre pienso en ti, teacher.'  ('Because I always think about you, teacher.')

Letter F

A verb – oh yes, of course two boys had written 'fuck.' I told them that there were plenty of other, more appropriate verbs they could write and that they had to change it. The response: 'I know there are other verbs, but this is the only one that's in my head.' Story of the adolescent boy's life, I suppose.

Teaching my 3rd years

The normal teacher of this class gave the students an essay to write for me because of their misbehaviour. One was entitled 'Class with Clare' (excusable), another 'Class with Clear' and another, most puzzlingly, 'Class with Cloe.' This is despite the fact that I have written my name on the white board about 5 times and emphasised that it is not pronounced 'CL-AY-REY.'

The other day, I was doing a fill in the gap exercise with different holiday verbs. One boy volunteered his answer of 'I like to come in the river', but instead of explaining to him what he'd said, I just told him that the verb 'swim' was more appropriate in this context. The constant sniggering which ensued when I told the class we were going to work on page 69 only confirmed that this was the right decision.

The textbook that we use has different phrase banks where the pupils need to translate English expressions into Spanish. One of them was 'you are right', which I explained means that you are correct and a person agrees with you. Tienes razón. Then, I asked what the opposite of that would be. 'If you are not correct,' I said, 'y si te equivoques, you are...'
Reply: 'Left.'   
Which would make more sense, I suppose.


Working with adults

I have a weekly conversation class with a group of teachers who teach in the bilingual section, where I don't have to really teach per se, just answer any language questions they may have. One of them was asking me about offensive words in English and I told him that the most offensive and taboo word in the English language started with a 'C'. He answered, “what is it, 'conservative'?”

Another of my adult students is expecting his first child soon and I asked him how his girlfriend was doing. “Ohh, fantastic,” he said, “I say her cariño, this is wonderful, you must be pregnant all the time!!'” Momentarily, my heart surged at his enthusiasm, paternal spirit and ability to find his girlfriend impossibly attractive despite the inevitable weight gain, tiredness and mood swings. Then he told me she's gone up two bra sizes. Sigh.


city said...

nice idea.. thanks for sharing.

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