Last week was my first round of observations, and I must say it went rather well! In several classes, I’ve stood in front of the room and the students asked me questions about myself ranging from “What is your name?” to “Out of the seven deadly sins, which one do you identify with?” Haha! I can certainly identify with the grammar issues that most students have trouble with. I remember when I was just starting to learn French; I was timid to speak and I definitely made silly errors. I can easily understand the mistakes they are making, thanks to my knowledge of French, which helps me naturally explain what they’ve done wrong.
I am working with 2nd, 1st, and “final” students, which is equivalent to our 10th, 11th, and 12th grade. I have been very impressed with the level of English that some of the students speak! I can tell that most of them are happy to have an assistant and will use the opportunity to improve their spoken English and to learn more about the United States. Unfortunately for them, they are more used to hearing the British accent. I can tell that my American accent is kind of throwing them off but I’m hoping that they will get used to it soon.
I’ll have my final set schedule by next week, where I’ll have 12 set hours of work each week (2 hours/classes with teach teacher). Until then, I am frantically trying to observe as many classes as possible so the teachers can decide where they want me to be during the school year.
Things in general have been going well also. I am enjoying the city of Douai, enjoying my international apartment (I’m living with German, Spanish, and Italian assistants), enjoying the food & beer of the region, and enjoying the proximity to Lille and Hazebrouck. I am however missing Mexican food – thanks in advance to Mom who will soon be sending me Rotel. Yay!