Monday, September 17, 2007

Back to school

Went back to the school again today, got shown where my pigeonhole was, where the photocopier is and so on. You can tell the English teachers' classrooms by the faded posters of Big Ben, Scots Guards, Beefeaters and so on. One of them avoids being too British-centred by having a picture of a Mississippi steamboat and the Twin Towers... I don't have my own classroom; I have to go to the top floor, then take a turn into a dark passage marked "Here be dragons", and the four rooms on the left are the ones I teach in. Pity, I would've liked to put some classroom language on the walls.

I observed a class today, to get some idea of what would be expected. It was actually pretty communicative (lots of monitored pairwork and so on), which surprised me as everything I've heard about the French system led me to believe it's all drilling and grammar-translation. Some of them seemed to have a level of spoken English on a par with the first year university students I used to teach! Do they forget everything at lycée (high school), I wonder? At the start of the lesson, the kids all have to line up outside the classroom, and they aren't allowed to sit down until the teacher says so. Sounds a bit disciplinarian, but it helps to make a clear break between playtime and getting down to work. Sarkozy would be pleased; in a recent open letter to teachers, he said pupils should stand up when the teacher enters the room, like they used to.

First actual teaching tomorrow. Gulp!

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Anonymous said...

Good luck! Tell us about it on Saturday.

The Tefltradesman said...

Good Luck! MAy all your moments be good ones...