Friday, September 01, 2006

the "Hokey Pokey" etc.

Imagine doing the Hokey Pokey at least 10 times a day, and 'Head and Shoulders, Knees and Toes' more than that, plus a few other action songs. I'm getting a work out while I work!
I started teaching my classes the Hokey Pokey the other day. They all love it. They can't all sing along with it, yet, but they have all of the actions down. Head and Shoulders is very popular. They all love it... from the Korean 5 year olds to the Korean 7 year olds. It's a good way to fill any extra time I have to fill.
The Summer program ended this past Monday, so the regular schedule returned on Tuesday. No more 2 hour lunch break, and it's back to the 6:00 finishing time.
I teach one book a week, three books in a month (each age group has a different set of 3), meaning I always have a week to fill. Even in one week, a book isn't much, as there isn't much to the books... some pages have a sentence, some nothing but pictures. This week was one of the empty weeks, as I'm not starting the books until next week. Filler time. For the most part, though, the kids don't really care if you do the same songs every day, as long as they are fun songs. It wears a bit on me, though. I'm trying to introduce some more new songs, but I have to sort through the songs I have to find ones that aren't too complicated or too fast. it takes time.
I sometimes have problems with the Korean kindy teachers interrupting what I am doing. They are almost always in the room when I am teaching (there are 2 per class). Most of them speak little or no English. In some of the classes, the teachers do their own thing while I am in there, and only speak up when the students really aren't listening, or if they see a student really misbehaving. In other classes, the teachers follow along with what I am doing. A couple of the teachers that understand some English (at least, the English that I am teaching) interrupt what I am doing a lot of the time to explain things in Korean to the students, which often messes up what I am doing. Instead of the students trying to think of what I am saying and coming up with an answer to my questions, the teacher tells them in Korean what I am saying, or what I am asking. Sometimes, it does help, but more often than not, it is unnecessary. Also, one result is that some of the students in those classes are listening for what the Korean teacher explains, rather than what I am saying, or trying to teach. Some also try to help the students with the answers, but sometimes give the wrong answers. I've brought the interruptions up a few times, but as of yet, still no change.
Other times, when I am doing activity songs where I have the students standing up, I usually do a couple at a time, one after the other. Often times, the Korean teachers are only half paying attention to what I am doing, and so when I finish a song, they tell the students to sit down. I then have to tell them to stand up again, which confuses the students, as they have two teachers telling them to do different things. Today was really bad for that. It happened in about half of my classes.
The teachers in each class have their own way of doing things. Some of them are very strict, some are not. I like to do a lot of the activities the same in each of the classes, but it doesn't always work that way when the teachers deal with things in different ways. The kids just like to be kids, but some of the classes get yelled at if they are jumping around getting excited about games or songs or such, whether I am okay with it or not.
I guess I just have to deal with these things.

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