Stress, December? && Elementary (My Dear Watson)
I feel like I should be writing every other day, I’ve all but forgotten the weekend!
Oh, yup, there it is - I remember!
On Friday after classes a group of us headed to the newly opened Christmas Market to see the tree, bathe in the lights and soak up a respectable amount of mulled wine… (and pretzels, chips and donuts…)
I just have to reiterate what a wonderful group of people they are, there was so much laughter and good conversation and it was really lovely. The market closes at 2100 so we headed to a boat-pub-thing - I’ve never been on one of these before! Despite having seen them and wanting to go on them many many a time! That was pretty cool and was closely followed by my first Irish Pub! A lovely night of firsts. One thing to take away? Mulled wine is better in Strasbourg…
I also found out on Friday that I passed my first assignment! Wahoo!
The whole week since has been an absolute roller coaster! I’m keeping notes throughout the week to refer to when I write and one of them just says “first grammar lesson and stress” so once again, though I don’t know exactly what I was stressed about, some parts of the week so far have been a whole lot harder than others. As mentioned I taught my first grammar lesson (a chellenge as I personally am very bad at grammar so I have to learn everything myself before I can even think of teaching it to my students!) I felt it went fantastically and made a post to this tune and was very elated until I got my tutor feedback which was possibly the worst feedback of the course so far! (For me anyway). What was strange was that what the tutor had to say was wildly different from how I felt, how my fellow trainees felt about what they saw and how the students reacted. Nonetheless I understand his feedback, I’ve taken it in and I’ve no doubt that he was fair and thorough in his reasoning.
Monday evening was pretty cool though! One evening I was browsing local couchsurfing hosts as you can meet with them etc. and I happened to read the most wonderful profile, I was just struck by the person’s beautiful JOY! Of course I had to write to them, just to show my appreciation if anything! As it happens, they did write back and on Monday night I ended up in a pub at an Erasmus/CS meet up! I won’t lie, as someone that doesn’t deal fantastically with crowds, it was decidedly overwhelming. There must have been well over a hundred people there and English first language was in a decided minority! It was really nice to get out meeting new people (again!) and I’ll definitely go again this Monday! I’m thrilled to have made that connection too.
Wednesday was our first frost here! It’s turned into those stunning, cold, sunny crisp mornings where you can practically feel magic seeping into your skin through the gorgeous colours in the sky. It’s the kind of weather that illuminates the beauty in absolutely everything and everyone. It also means we have beautiful clear starry(ish) nights. Perhaps not by rural Wales/Morocco standards but any stars are beautiful stars.
Wednesday was also our ‘transition’ day into the second half of the course and with that, the second group of learners. I moved from an upper-intermediate class, a group with great fluency and big personalities, to elementary. The opposite!!
And now it’s Thursday, and um, December?! What??!!
Today I taught my first elementary class. It’s hard to really place how it went, I would say it went fine but considering the huge difference in abilities and subject matter I don’t really feel like I can comment on the class. My tutor did say 'good class, we’ll talk about it tomorrow’ afterwards though so that’s nice. I can identify some huge scope for improvement though which is only natural.
Here’s a lovely thought for the month of December.