Weblog Commenting and Trackback by HaloScan.com

Getting there


Thursday, January 13, 2005

well well well, spent a couple of hours yesterday fixing up the four handouts sent to me in the e-mail, fitting them into two pages rather than three (less paper and less printing for me),
actually had spent an hour or so googling the correct terms for a Gun Control papera couple of days earlier, so lots of extra time doing that and writing personal email comments and sending back the revised handouts.....so this morning in the staffroom I was busy printing them out and making sure I had the vocab test for people who had missed it, and also the rubrics....

Got to class on the dot, even late, as one student brought me last-minute handout printing to be done, and I met one of the guys in the corridor...in class one group was fiddling with setting up a real true live powerpoint, and agonizing that the university projector pin plug doesn't go in the USB of the modern laptops we all carry around....in the end they went off and borrowed a laptop too, and they were able to set it up in the break for the most amazing session telling Kim Jon Il he should resign or stop funding the military and open up the country if he wanted Japanese economic support . They had great use of humor, asking him if he had had a good breakfast, nicely interwoven speech parts, great intro and summary, and of course suggesting he resign later on, nicely done, and the visuals were excellent, lean mean text ppt with an area map and some heartache slides of starving kids, I gave the team top marks in my rubric marking.

Most presentations were average to good, some with well thought out content but still needing better visuals and delivery, others with great posture and energy and three beer cans for visuals, some a little out of focus, inbetween the first three I would praise the good things, but then we started running out of time, so I stopped and rushed them up on stage....At the last one I saw we would go past the end of class, so I thanked people again for working so well, (I had done that first up, saw it coming, my not having timeat the end)...but as we were all in a melee at the end i didn't feel i could say goodbye personally to my students, a couple stopped on their way out and we shared some words, and after the test one of my students said they would come and see me next year, once they'd got a job worked out (here in japan the fourth year is basically a job-search year)...that felt nice.

I feel it's too soon now to feel any sense of pride and achievement about the course, still all involved with the humdrum of this last presentation, and somewhere in the back of my mind i remember doernyei?? and an old post?? about my not taking time to celebrate achievements. Kind of wishing now I'd taken a moment to all clap and cheer and celebrate, I guess it will happen without me! One of the students has handed me a wee yellow slip with what they learned, saying:"I'm exhausted. "
Wow! I did make them work hard!
Another comment: "Four presentations was a pretty stiff, but I really learned a lot."

On comment here reminds me of an episode in class, "I learned to use Google to translate into English", because before we started presentations I had talked about handouts and how to find the right terms when you research data in Japanese and then want to present it in English, then used the example of the Gun Control handout, and told them about how I had googled to find the right expressions/names for the laws. . I also picked them up on not quoting sources for graphs, and for using color coded piecharts which don't show up in a printed black and white handout..

What really made me see red for a second was the fact that the gun control group handed out their mistaken handout with all the original mistakes, even though I had emailed them a corrected version a couple of days early and printed it for them that morning....one of the guys had hand drawn a wee cartoon character at the top of every handout, maybe that was why they went for their old version, but for a second I was MAD< LIVID,,,,,but then I took a deep breath, or else remembered it was the last day, whatever, and after the presentation told everyone to disregard the English on the handout because it was all wrong, and to also get a copy of the one I printed with the exact names.

Oof, now then am I finishing this last Thursday blog on the right note??? A whole year of teaching, a whole year of intensive blogging up of what I'm doing, kinda looking forward to rereading and reassessing as I head into next year, and once again wishing I had made the time to somehow celebrate more and tell everyone how much I love all the work they put in and how proud of them I was! I hope I remember on Friday, I made sure I have no vocabulary test takers to distract me, so hopefully I can use the last ten minutes for rejoicing and praising. Just wait til they see their grades!