I love the freedom of summer. This summer feels particularly unique because I know that I will be going back to the classroom as a student, rather than a teacher, this fall.
But I’ll still be in my role as a teacher for a bit.
A text conversation between a student and me shows that I’ll forever be seen as a “teacher”:
Student, July 2: Hey mr. k guess what
Me, July 2: What?
Student, July 2: U know i work at a christian camp this summer….and there is this counslor that reminds me of you….all the way to the t…..he is majoring in English from UMC he acts just like you and everything………this is making my entire summer…..its like taking mr. k’s class all over again….
Me, July 5: Hilarious. I hope he makes you read, read, read. I’m going to China tomorrow. Bye!
Student, July 5: why are you leaving….we were supposed to hang out this summer mr. k
Me, July 5: I’m going to teach Chinese kids English and do some traveling. Hope you’re well.
Student, July 6: well good luck. i’ll keep you in my prayers mr. k
Second, I’m spending a couple weeks teaching English to middle and high schoolers in a rural province as part of a service project.
Actually, 5 other 2009 DC CMs are with me. It is a sort of celebratory, culminating, half-pleasure, half-serious educational trip.
China is a mystical place, not least because of the sheer scale of the city that I’m in now, Shanghai. Also, there is something eerie about being stuck behind the great firewall, which cuts access to such web necessities as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube.
I’m looking forward to teaching “other” students in Xiuning, a small town in Anhui province. Obviously, as I’ll be working in a typical Chinese public school system, I’m very much looking forward to doing a little comparative analysis. So here’s to exploring China–and teaching English to Chinese students!