A good, experienced ESL teacher has the ability to get a students intended meaning even when there is mispronunciation, bad word choice, a complete lack of context or all of the above, and respond professionally without making the student feel self conscious.
What she meant to say: “Chumbo, I like your class because your lectures are short and easy to understand.”
What she said: “Chumbo, I like you because your erections are short and not hard.”
Me: “As long as my students are satisfied, I’m satisfied.”
So, one of my students comes up to me out of nowhere and is like “apellido means last name, not nickname, in Spanish.” and I’m like ok. Then she’s like “empleado is employee, not employer”, and I’m like “ummm… OK”. Then she’s like “dinero means money, not income” and I’m like “why are you telling me this?” Then she says “well, I was listening to you talk to that lady over there, and I think you were using those words wrong”… That’s when it hit me:
That awkward moment when you realize you just completely fucked up one of your student’s, who is not a citizen yet, first ever US tax returns.
On a brighter note, next year when she’s deported back to El Salvador, she won’t be so confused on how to fill out her goddamn taxes that she asks a fucking English teacher.
Other teachers criticize my decision to allow my students to say “bad” words in class. They say “you should make them expand their vocabulary! Plus, it’s disrespectful!”. And yes, most of the time this is correct. Usually it’s some immature kid saying “shit” or “fuck” for no reason. BUT… ever so often, a student just gets it. They do it right! They get the subtleties of the English language that I’m trying to demonstrate, and it makes me feel like I’m not just standing here talking to myself.
Me: If you could be any animal in the world, what would you be? Chinese girl: It depends teacher Me: You have to elaborate… Chinese girl: Well, if I were in America, I would be a dog. Americans don’t eat dogs. If I were in India, I would be a cow. Indians don’t eat cows… Me: Well, what if you were in China? Chinese girl: I’d be fucked.
As anyone who knows me knows, I think I can speak Spanish. I mean, I took several years of it in college, use it all the time, and I even use it to pick up chicks. But, there are still some small things that I get wrong from time to time. For example, I thought “ya no” meant “not yet”, but apparently it means “not anymore”.
so today I just found out (after years of saying this answer to a pretty frequent question) that every time my elderly Hispanic students have asked me “teacher, do you have any children?” I’ve been looking them directly in their eyes, smiling (with a slight giggle), and saying “not anymore.”
Just got this in the mail. Much more intense than I thought it would be!!! I recommend it for the motion aspect, but I’m still not sold on the martial aspect of it… or if a martial art can even be learned via DVD. Check out the blog for more on this topic and DVD review.
Anyone who knows me knows that one of my most awesomest characteristics is that I am extremely complimentary. Whether it’s in capoeira, my English class, or in the gym, I’m always the one who says “good job” or “almost man! getting better” or “yeah that’s it”. That’s just part of what a Chumbo is.
Also, for the past 2 months, I have had a free membership to YMCA. I’ve been going to the gym every day at the same time, and as is to be expected, I tend to see the same people. As a result (and I don’t know if this is a form of delusion or mental disorder), somehow I’ve started to consider these folks “my gym friends”.
There is one woman in particular who is forever going HAM (hard as a muthafucker for those weird people who don’t jam Kanye) on the treadmill. I mean, this woman runs like dogs are chasing her… Police dogs… and she is holding a TV… with cocaine in it. As an expected result, in the last two months (that I for some reason thought we were experiencing together) at the gym, she has lost a substantial amount of weight. So, being her “very complimentary gym friend Chumbo” I decide to let her know that I can see her results, so I says to her “man, you’ve been going hard for that past two months! I see you getting your sexier on!”.
Then, she made that face. You know, that look of fear and disgust that women get when a stranger that she had never seen me before tells her she had been “getting sexier”. That’s how she looked at me. (I ain’t gonna lie, it kinda hurt.) Every woman I know that goes to the gym with any sort of frequency tells me that there is always “the creeper” that they just avoid at all costs. Now, I am officially “that guy” for that girl. *sigh*
Even when things don’t turn out the way you want, it’s still a good experience if you learn a little bit about yourself.
For example: I have always said that I love my chosen career as an educator and my life in general. I like it so much that even if I were to win the million dollar lotto jackpot, I would continue to teach albeit with a lot less stress.
As fate would have it, I bought a lotto ticket on whim just this morning. It was a scratch off and the rules were simple - if you match 3 like amounts, you win that amount of money. So, as I began scratching I thought “man, it would be cool to win. I could pay some student loans, I wouldn’t have to have a night job, I could properly care for my future kinder etc. etc.
Low an behold, I look at the ticket: 100,000 and 100,000 and 100,000. I had won 100 grand!! Not a million, but not bad at all! Also, despite my previously stated lust for education, I was half-way down Interstate 45 yelling "eat a dick students!!!” before I realized that the middle number was actually 10,000. I could barely look at myself in the mirror as I re-entered the parking lot of my job. I guess I’m not as satisfied with my life as I previously imagined.
Sometimes I think I’m the only person in the world who does yoga yet has absolutely not balance. I mean, even though I do yoga basically every day, I can’t stand on one foot for more than three seconds without leaning on the wall. Hell, Even my supposed support system (I’m looking at you Melissa Badillo) makes fun of me for not being able to put my shoes on and stand up at the same time. Well, today we had a capoeira performance at a festival with no changing rooms. I had to change out of my clothes and into my capoeira clothes inside a porta-potty. On top of that, it just so happened that the one I went into had no seat cover. Also, except for the exact spot where I was standing, the floor looked rather suspect as well.
Not only did I balance myself: I took off my clothes, AND put on my capoeira clothes while holding the clothes I had just taken off all done on one foot at a time without touching anything around me… at all.
Summer session is coming and we got some early register stats. Being the curious person I am, I looked at the profiles of some of the future students. One question on the survey was “what are your 3 favorite animals?” the girl answered “dog, cat, and pig.” The next question was “what are your 3 favorite foods”. The girl wrote simply: “same”.
I have no doubt in my mind that I will enjoy teaching this girl.