Hey Mom (and all the other hardworking American teachers out there): do you know what French elementary school teachers can do that you can’t?
Drink wine during lunch time. In the break room. Did I mention their lunch breaks are two hours long?
Of course, this doesn’t mean you go and get sloshed. The five of us split a bottle at lunch. But still. What the hell America, why can’t you let your teachers have their little pleasures? Honestly, most of them deserve a stiff drink by lunch time for all the stuff they put up with.
Being a language assistant however, I get all the perks without any of the drags. I don’t have to worry about discipline because the teachers are in the class to deal with that. I just get to pop into these children’s lives for 30-40 minutes a week, and play a bunch of awesome language games with them.
Today I planned a lesson to teach “How are you?” and “I am happy/sad/tired/etc.” This turned out to be incredibly fun because I engaged the children with a lot of interactive learning. I acted out all the emotions with the words and had them imitate them. Once they understood, they were also able to come in front of the class and do the same. Most of them picked it up really quickly, and by the end they were able to write the words to corresponding smiley faces on a sheet I made for them.
My bonus incentive: Halloween stickers I bought in the United States for correct completion. I have learned that this is a huge motivator.
We ended class by singing, “If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands.” Another huge motivator for kids: getting them out of their seats to clap their hands and stomp their feet. By the end of the day I brought home all kinds of little drawings they had made for me as gifts. Man do I love my job.