As I prep for a three-day weekend, Monday is a public holiday, at school, we’re prepping to finish our books. And so ends the first semester of a new school year. Final tests are finished. Reports are written. Books are…well, books are not yet finished but will be by next week. Why, oh why, my school insists on me giving final tests three weeks before we finish the actual books, I don’t know but anyway, ’tis not for me to judge.
Tests always bring out the hatred in my students. Unhappy they’re being tested. Unhappy they didn’t study and will fail. Unhappy with learning English. They don’t like that I give them homework. They don’t like that I make them do work in my class (unlike my co-teacher) and they don’t like that I have a strict no speaking Korean policy (unlike my co-teacher’s very liberal, all-the-Korean-you-want policy).
They don’t like doing tests, sitting in hot classrooms, sitting in cold classrooms, sitting on their chairs in general.
And of course, they blame me for their unhappiness.
Kid: ‘Teacher, if you go, Lauren Teacher (their previous teacher) will come back!!’
Me: ‘It doesn’t quite work like that.’
Kid, (who failed his test) counting the pages left in the book: ‘Eight pages.’
Kid: ‘Teacher, where you live?’
Me: ‘You mean where do I live in Korea or where is my home?’
Kid: ‘Your home.’
Kid: ‘In eight pages, you go to Ireland?’
Me: ‘No. In eight pages, we get a new book.’
While playing a number guessing game in class.
Another kid gets the answer correct.
Little Girl: ‘Oh, I’m stressed!’
Me: ‘Have you ever been in an accident?’
Kid: ‘Yes, when I am 7 years old, I hug the TV. The TV fall and me back and TV on me and I break my leg.’
Kid: ‘What the hell?’
Me: ‘Ok, you really need to stop saying that in my class. You can’t say that to me.’
Kid: ‘It’s a bad word?’
Me: ‘Yes and no. You can’t say it to me.’
Kid: ‘Do you say it?’
Me: ‘Yes…but not to you.’
Kid: ‘It’s a swear word?’
Me: ‘Not…It’s not a bad swear word.’
Kid: ‘Like shit?’
Me: ‘No, not like that.’
Kid 2: ‘I’m a good swearer!’
Me: ‘I do not want a demonstration of that!’
One of my little kids put her backpack on her front and marched around the class pretending to be pregnant.
Kid: “I AM MOMMY MONSTER!!’
And then she started chasing other kids around.
Me: ‘What’s a vegetable?’
Little boy: ‘I don’t like vegetables.’
Little boy next to him: ‘I don’t like YOU.’
Kid 1: ‘Teacher…you like….boys….um….big arms?’
She makes a muscle gesture with arms.
Me: ‘Eh…no…not really.’
Kid 2: ‘Teacher, you like…boys…they….ou, chocolate chest?!’
Kid 1: ‘SIX-PACK!!’
I was laughing so much and I couldn’t speak!
Doing questions in class: A little boy has his hand up.
Little boy: ‘Oh ME ME ME!!’
Me: ‘Yes, Andy?’
Little boy: (shocked I picked him) ‘Oh my God!’
Me: ‘What would you like to do?’
Kid: ‘I would like to…book with people’s skin…’
Kid: ‘They make book with the people’s skin….pages…I want to touch.’
Me: ‘They what? Who? Who made a book out of people’s skin?!’
Kid: ‘I don’t know. I see on TV. Our science teacher tell us. I want to touch people’s skin book.’
Me: ‘Ewwww, that’s horrible. What TV programme?’
Kid 2: ‘Ohhhh teacher, Lauren Teacher on TV show!!! She eat a banana!!’
Kid: ‘No, really!’
Kid: ‘Lauren Teacher on TV. She eat a banana. On TV!’
Me: ‘I’m gonna text Lauren teacher and ask her that.’
Kid: ‘You know Lauren Teacher’s phone number?!!’
Me: ‘Yes, of course.’
Kid: ‘You give to me?’
Me: ‘I will not.’
While doing listen and repeat:
One little boy, out of the 12 students in class: ‘Sitting.’
He looks around at his classmates who said nothing and looks a little embarrassed.
Me: ‘Ok, since he was the only one who said it, he gets a sticker.’
The little boy jumps from his seat, arms in the air!
Little boy: ‘YAY!!!’
Kid: ‘Teacher, what’s your Korean name?’
Me: ‘I don’t have a Korean name.’
Me: ‘I’m not Korean!’
Kid: ‘But you IN Korea!!’
A friend of mine who works in an elementary school in Ireland sent this in:
Possibly the funniest conversation ever I heard in the classroom yesterday. We were doing these Stile tray self-assessment things with hinged lids and some of the hinges are kind of difficult to manoeuvre.
So one of them says, ‘Mine is stiff.’
‘So is mine.’
‘I love a stiff one.’
‘Mine is really stiff.’
‘Mine’s the stiffest.’
I swear I deserve an award for keeping a straight face.