Hmm…I guess that title could come across really wrong. I’ll only know if there’s a sudden spike in readers.
I love teaching adults after a day of teaching high school kids. (I love teaching high school kids any day of the week. Don’t get me wrong.)
You barely have to open your mouth and they laugh. They sit quietly and try to do every little thing you ask. They are responsive. They are open to telling stories or to just talking with you. I am amazed and loving them all over again.
Tonight I started the beginners with “She/he has many problems,” “Do you have many problems?” and “I have many problems.” I gave them all nametags and asked them to put down a light-hearted problem or a lie on their nametags. We started with one boy whose problem was the fact that he is too tall for his mother. (We had three or four teenagers in the adult class.) Then another one walked in sporting a cast, so that was an obvious problem. It took 45 minutes to go through those problems! Part-way through, I stopped to do some TPR, and managed to work in a few more structures that I know we’ll need. Then I pulled up a young woman and had her be “Anna,” asking questions about her (is she Russian/American, young/old, does she have long/short hair, is she tall, does she have problems). We compared her with the boys and their problems, and in the last two minutes, I read the group the first paragraph of Poor Anna (a lot trickier in Russian than in some other languages), and it sure looked as though they understood it!! So crazy! I am just delighted by the results.
In case it’s not clear, I ended up choosing to do Ben’s Circling with Balls, using Blaine’s new technique of interviewing and reporting back to the class. The only thing I didn’t do was put the report into past tense. That still feels really unnatural to me, unless you’re doing a story. I think I could have done it with Anna, but I forgot. And I already had a bunch of stuff on the board and didn’t want to erase it. I had the bad feeling that I would forget it if I did.
Time for sleep. I will post this in the morning!