Keep calm – keep teaching

I was silent on the blog these two weeks and for a good reason. I was busy teaching at an elementary school. Oh boy…

I was very nervous at first, but now I feel more confident in my skills as a teacher. It helped that I’ve already taught at a high-school, albeit another subject – sociology. Now was time for English lessons. 😀 I had no idea how much English these children already knew and how much I had to translate during class. This made me very nervous since I’m used by now to speak English all the time, just like in my classes at the Uni.


Teaching at a school is part of my studies. We have to observe classes at first and get a feel for the students, then we teach classes we prepared ourselves. So my time was pretty much consumed with preparing classes, writing observations, evaluations and what not. I was teaching English to 4th, 5th and 7th graders. It was exhausting but fun. Unfortunately, I got sick by the end of the first week. I had a very sore throat and I coughed all the time. My second week was thus spent teaching with laryngitis and a horrible hoarse voice. That is not something I’d recommend – ever. I almost coughed up my lungs after the classes and that did not help my voice any. Now I’m on a strict voice rest.

The gallons of tea I drink daily has me craving coffee like mad. I also want ice-cream! It’s sunny and warm and all summery outside and I’m stuck with tea and rest. I just hope the infection doesn’t move deeper into my lungs now. I still have some presentations to do in my usual classes at the Uni. I can’t get really sick.

All these health issues aside, I was very lucky I had a great mentor at the school. She told me what she wanted from me in class, encouraged me, gave me tips. This helped me feel more confident, especially in a class with problematic students. I don’t know what’s going on with children these days, but we never dared to behave like that in class. Homework not done, no books or notebooks, chatting loudly, even walking around. We were prepared for our classes and if we forgot anything, we borrowed a book from a friend next to us – we didn’t wait for the teacher to solve the problem. And the teacher did not need to goand order you to open your notebook when the rest of the class is already copying something. These generations absolutely loathe writing. I find that baffling – writing isn’t a punishment!

I’m glad most children really liked me and looked forward to my classes. It’s such a nice feeling to have students stop you in the hall to ask if you were teaching and smile brightly when the answer is affirmative. I loved this and it’s such a confidence boost. 😀

Now I’m looking forward to a full recuperation and some sunny days when I’ll be able to read outside. 😀 And then ice-cream!


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