Since my last post was such a downer, I wanted to provide a quick update, as well as some entertaining videos for you all.
I decided to stay at my school for the year. I’ve been slowly working through all of the issues of living in the countryside, and I definitely think things are looking up. I move into my apartment on Monday (hopefully), which will also be the first day of classes for me! Apparently the kids have been whining to their teachers about when they get to have class with me. So cute! In regards to transportation, I’ve worked out a deal with some of the teachers that live near the city. On days they leave at 4:30, I can ask them to drop me off at the nearest bus stop to their apartment on the way home so that it’s only a half hour bus ride to the city instead of an hour and a half! Also, one of the teachers has an old e-bike (electric motor scooter), and has agreed to fix it up and lend it to me! Right now, I don’t really have a lot of friends so it’s been kind of lonely, but I think that things will definitely turn around next month when the other 10 or so AYC teachers arrive. It’s also been difficult to find food outside of the cafeteria and the two restaurants on my street, but that has encouraged me to explore via bus… so I guess that’s a good thing.
On a day that I was especially down, one of my other AYC teacher friends encouraged me to make a list of all of the things I LIKE about my placement. While you read the list, please appreciate this AWESOME song that a few of the AYC guy teachers, Eli and Miller, found on TV during orientation. It’s glorious.
Here we go:
1. I like my cute little apartment
2. I like having a whole apartment to myself!
3. I like that I only have to make one lesson plan a week
4. I like that some days I only have to teach two classes
5. I like that I have Fridays off
6. I like that my school bought a bunch of stuff for my apartment (cooking supplies, bathroom stuff, cleaning supplies) even though they didn’t have to
7. I like that my principal is so open to me teaching with Western and creative methods
8. I like that the students are all really excited to have me
9. I like that it isn’t too humid here
10. I like that I’m only 30 minutes away driving from the beach
11. I like that I’m the “special” foreign teacher
12. I like that everyone has been so accommodating to help me get settled
13. I like that since everyone is so excited to have a foreign teacher all the way out here, it feels like I can almost do no wrong in terms of teaching
14. I like that my school offered to give me 3,000 kuai to go to Hong Kong to get my work visa
15. I also like my 800 kuai bonus for teachers day this weekend (thanks Chinese government!)
16. I’m sure to get some great stories living all the way out here!
Today I took the bus to an area that some random guy at the bus stop said had a lot of restaurants. There, I happened upon a small grocery store. I was looking for some yogurt to eat for breakfast, but, of course, I couldn’t read the flavors. One kind looked promising, so I looked up the characters on my Chinese dictionary phone app PLECO. The flavor translated to: “Special flavor fermented breast milk”. I did not buy it.
In other news, since my lesson plans are so flexible, there are a few videos I’d like to show in class.
Young people in China LOVE the Big Bang Theory so I will definitely be showing this:
And I am EXTREMELY excited to show them this music video that I found today. I may even base a whole lesson around it.
If I decide to teach it in class, that means I get to show it for twenty classes.. every day for two weeks… BEST TWO WEEKS EVER.