Special Guests

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First period today I had a very successful class with my favorite learning disability student. He has difficulty recognizing shapes and some palate issues that make pronunciation very difficult. He did very well at grabbing letters and spelling out his name, he demanded we let him do his last name as well. Often I have him stare at my mouth and practice making sounds, today he only had trouble with F and V. Even so, I think those sounds were recognizable as well. His teacher said his clarity comes and goes and this was a good day. I’m sure that’s true, but I also feel like he is progressing. Special classes are a joy for me because the students are always trying hard. I’m willing to teach any level, but lack of interest or effort really takes the wind out of my sails. Eager students are like taking crack for me: I can’t get enough of it.

Returning to the office, I was introduced to a professor from Gifu and asked if he could observe my classes from second through sixth period. When surprises like this happen, I always wonder what they would do if I said no. Of course, I said yes. It adds a little tension to my day having an observer, and I end out spending my break times talking with them. Overall it is a good experience.

Perhaps I feel a little special that they think something about my classes is worth observing. Also, there is the opportunity for good exchange of ideas. Introduction of rhyming concepts before practicing phonics was one concept which caught my attention today. Based on a friend’s linguistic research, I have been thinking more about rhymes and their importance to learning English. It doesn’t hurt that I brought “Hop on Pop”, “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish”, and “Green Eggs and Ham” back from my last trip to America. Maybe a little part of me is hoping I get discovered, and someone wants me to do some exciting research project with a fat stipend. (Please don’t recommend me for therapy related to being delusional.)

My most special guest came this evening. She arranged for her assistant to take care of the kids until late, so she could visit with me until after 10pm tonight. We talked a lot about next months days off, our summer trip to America to meet family, next year’s wedding/honeymoon ideas, and even a little about future child-rearing concerns. I wish I didn’t have so much scheduled after work today, but that gave her a chance to relax and eat with her folks before coming to see me.

Floating on cloud nine, thinking about tomorrow a little, and hoping I can get myself to sleep.

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