Today was my first day of classes at the hakwon… I am way more tired than I should be. But here’s what’s funny:
I have spent days upon days stressing over the rules I would have in my classroom, thinking that a strong structural support system would provide the launching pad they needed to make it to the land of fluency.
I consulted with teacher friends who all gave me information on the latest studies on ways to set up your classroom. They gave me the class rules they use (and presumably succeed by) which all seemed to focus on the broad strokes of morality… like respect for your body, respect for your mind, respect for your heart, etc.
So after tossing and turning, I narrowed my list down to two:
- Raise your hand before you speak
During my first class, I wrote “Respect” on the board. Not only did they not understand the word, they didn’t understand anything else I said trying to explain it…so I was left a mumbling mess.
Class two — I scrapped “Respect” and stuck with “Raise your hand before you speak”…
Class three — “Raise your hand”
Class four — Nothing… I just “led by example” by raising my own had at my own questions…
Of course, what was I thinking… most native speakers I know don’t understand the word or the concept of “respect” so it was a bit much of me to expect Korean elementary school students to latch on to this word.
All told, it was a good day. They know I want them to raise their hand… and that was the only rule I cared about anyway.