So today I tried something new (even though ALL of this teaching stuff is new to me) and I think it went very well.
This morning I played a game with my students where they picked a category (Such as "Animals" or "Things That Start With 'R'") and they had to help one student on their team to guess the 5 words on the other side. It went pretty well, although we did get yelled out once by the administration because the seniors were taking their mock IB exams and we were being too loud. I take that as a sign that my students were having fun. ;-)
The new thing I tried happened by accident. The game finished up early and I still had time left in class. I decided to talk to the students about something I was trying to figure out: their monthly test.
I am required to give them a test, so I had already decided to do an oral test since I figured they would already have a lot of written ones and could use a break from that. Today I posed a questions to my students: What kind of test do YOU want.
Instead of a chorus of "NO TEST! NO TEST!" like I was afraid of, I got some very intelligent and good answers. One of my students suggested we do it in the style of the oral section of the English proficiency test they'll have to take to go to college in the US. It involves a self-introduction, choosing a random topic, then a short Q and A with the examiner. The rest of the class chimed in with suggestions for topics, how long each section should be, whether they wanted to do it in front of the class or individually, whether they wanted to do it alphabetically or randomly.
I feel really good right now because not only do I no longer have to worry about what kind of test to give, but I feel like I connected a bit with a class that I have had some trouble with in the past. Hopefully they think it was a positive experience too.
As a COMPLETELY RANDOM side-note, I had the weirdest dream last night. I dreamed that China had a secret government program to help preserve the panda population. That secret program involved turning foreigners into pandas. Friends that had some to visit me were slowly turning in pandas. Weird.
Anyway, I need to go check the AV room to make sure the movie I am showing my next class works.
Talk to y'all later!