Teaching early childhood aged children which ranges from 3 – 5 year olds all day is quite the adventure. There are many reasons for it being an adventure, in fact too many different reason I can’t list them all. I do however enjoy things that I often find myself saying in class. I like to think that I have perfected my craft of sarcasm, being that some people can never tell if I’m being sarcastic or honest. Job well done, if I do say so myself. Remember though that my students are very young and have no idea what sarcasm is, never fear though, that does not stop me from using it, in fact it might increase the frequency. Here is an example of how they do not understand sarcasm but as a good teacher I try to teach them.
Setting: outside in the courtyard on an extremely hot day and a student accidentally knocks over my water bottle spilling it all over my papers.
Coach Brandy: please watch where you are going so you don’t knock over my water bottle….oh lovely someone knocked it over – lovely all over my papers – just lovely.
Student: Coach Brandy is that lovely?
Coach Brandy: no that is not lovely, that is the opposite of lovely.
It’s little conversations like this that bring me joy throughout the day. Even though my papers were soaked it was hilarious for one of them to ask if that was lovely.
Little kids swearing in general is pretty hilarious because they usually don’t know what it means they are just repeating what they heard. In my case as an international teacher English is not their first language so they are just learning English and sometimes at this age they might just be learning it for the first time in school. This fact alone ups the ante for hilarious situations involving swearing. Most of my students probably say bad words or mean words in Arabic but since I don’t speak the language I have no idea. It’s not too common that they swear in English the worst is usually calling each other babies. But when they do swear it’s hilarious, probably even more hilarious is because they have no idea what they are saying is bad. Here is an example of a KG2 (kindergarten) student swearing.
Omar: Zeina said shit.
Zeina: I didn’t say shit, Omar said shit.
Coach Brandy: Zeina and Omar don’t say shit – it’s a bad word and it’s not nice.
Both students run off and continue to play not even bothered that I said it too 🙂
Funny comments that make me chuckle on the inside:
Last year when I co-taught most of my classes with my colleague Kim she was always there to laugh with me at these situations. This year I’m on my own so I usually just laugh to myself or chuckle inside and then tell my friends later. Even though no one is there to laugh with me it’s still pretty funny. Here is a short list of things that I find myself saying in class that make me chuckle. Please remember they are 3 – 5 year olds and all of what I say refers to our class activities and the equipment we use to do these activities such as kicking, running, jumping, throwing, etc.
– Play with your own ball – yours is the blue ball – play with the blue ball
– You can’t go down whenever you want (said to the class while playing with the parachute and trying to shoot the ball up to the ceiling)
– Get your hands out of your pants
– Stop kissing him/her
– Keep your fingers out of his/her ears
– Put your shoes back on
– Does anyone know what they are doing
– Please do not lick or bite the ball/frisbee you are not a dog
– Gross! Go get a tissue
– Stop crying – there is no crying in P.E.
Most of these comments are said daily, especially anything related to touching themselves, others and even me.
I also like to teach my students about the US. One day I wore my Cubs hoodie to class and they asked what it said so I explained it was my favorite baseball team (they have no idea what baseball is). I told them the team name was the Chicago Cubs and then we talked about that’s where I am from and how it’s in America. Now I’m not really from Chicago but trying to explain to 4 year olds that I’m from Coal City a small farm an hour south of Chicago was not a road I wanted to venture down so I stuck with Chicago. Then we practiced our midwestern accent and I had to video tape it of course 🙂
Even though they try my patience most days, suck the life out my everyday and only listen half of the time they do make me laugh and smile on a daily basis. I never thought that I would like teaching this age as much as I do but I do and I’m glad that I have this opportunity.