Friday, August 13, 2010

Random conversations

Teaching children everyday, for those of you who don't know, is always a fresh experience. There are a billion conversations in a day that are hysterical or touching or just plain cute.

Example number one: Paul, everyday that I have lunch with my Apricot class - which is everyday except Fridays - asks me, 'teacher, no avocado today?' which is a complex sentence for a four year old who doesn't really speak English. He seems so sincere when he asks it, too. Every time it sounds like he is truly concerned. I tried to explain to him that avocados are out of season but that really strained his English vocabulary. So, everyday I just say, 'no avocado today!'

Example Number two: tilting far more towards the hilarious side is Sally - the student - who is Christina-Teacher's daughter. Everyday, she bothers William (who, I don't know if I mentioned this, is half African American) about what he is eating and always tries to snag some. One day he was eating a chicken sandwich and she tried to sneak some of it. William turned to her all stern and was like, 'Sally, what have I told you?' She sighed and parrots: 'never touch a black man's chicken'.

I nearly choked on my lunch.

The same girl, Sally, on another day, wanted a cracker from William but he ate it too fast for her to grab it. So she sighs and says something in Korean along the lines 'awww, that was my cracker'. Later that day, she breezes into the faculty room, pats William on the stomach and goes 'whats up, cracker?' and breezes out. The crack up that followed lasted a good ten minutes.

Kris is another case. He can get kind of annoying sometimes. He'll follow me around all day going 'Airplane! Airplane! Airplane! Airplane!' because he wants me to make him a paper airplane. But sometimes he just wants attention, so he'll follow me around shouting anything. Here is a sample conversation:

Kris: Teacher! Teacher! Teacher! Teacher! Teacher! Teacher!
Kris: . . . . . . power rangers.

this last is said as if he were truly rejoicing in the mere fact of their existence.

An afternoon kid named Paul (no relation to kindergarten Paul) goes around shouting 'I'm a prodigy! I'm a prodigy!' because his English is very good. He has gotten so full of himself that now he refuses to respond to 'Paul' and instead demands that I address him as 'English', which he claims is his new English name. This was after a discussion we had in the class about weird English nicknames. I had been talking to a friend who was telling me all of the funky names the mothers of her ridiculously expensive private school named their children. This included one girl named 'Apostrophe' and another named 'Abcd' (pronounced: 'Ahbicity').

Left out of here is the discussion I had with my co-workers about what nicknames little kids have for genitalia in English. That one you just had to be there for.

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