November

So just this week left of November and then we’re into December and the countdown until Christmas! I fly home on the 20th, which I’m really excited for, and fly back to Prague on January 4th. November has been colder and busier than the other months so far- we’ve had a few teachers leave here and there but aside from a few extra subs we’re all coping. The primary school I work at celebrated its 80th birthday the other week, so although on 2 days we didn’t have any classes, we had to come in to create some lesson plans to use in the future. I’ve also started teaching a Grade 4 afternoon English ‘club’ at the school, where we have conversational practice, play a few games, and they do some writing practice too. They also showed me the video they made to celebrate the schools birthday, by their grade 4 class all dressing up in old costume and acting out a scene from an old-style school classroom. Their acting was so good, I was majorly impressed! They also have old photographs posted around the school so it’s been interesting looking at that. To celebrate they also danced and sung in circles around various parts of the school which was weird to see when we first came in Thursday morning as we didn’t know at the time why we weren’t teaching, so we just saw about five teachers dancing around a pillar. But once we found out it made more sense!

The pupils have more workbooks and folders now so I’m making sure they do enough writing and trying to get them to understand the structure. I guess you can only try your best but I hope they understand it! Aside from primary school I teach at 2 pre-schools a couple of days a week, these are afternoon classes so we just turn up to teach the lesson and leave. But I’ve had to sub a couple of morning pre-schools, where you have to play with them for half an hour, then have snack time together, then teach the lesson, and then join in with outdoor playtime! Such a hard life. I also tutor a boy 1-to-1 and I can see he’s doing really well so that’s good to see. I’d like to pick up some private tutoring in the new year for a bit of extra pocket money, as well as signing up for Chinese lessons too. I hope to return to China next September!

A couple of weekends ago, 3 of us took a trip to Bratislava, Slovakia. We finished early on the Friday and had the Monday off, so we caught the train and checked into City Hostel for a few nights. On the Saturday we visited the castle which was good, it also randomly had an Estrucan exhibition on at the time which was random to have there but really interesting (for me anyway). It was FREEZING in Bratislava so although it would’ve been nice walking around, it was far too cold/I was far too whiney for that. That night we went to a few bars, fell out with a bouncer because I didn’t want to take my coat off, and got back to the hostel around 4ish. On Sunday we went in search of a statue; there are many different statues and sculptures around Bratislava, which you can organise as a scavanger hunt to try and find all of them, but we pretty much did all of this on the Saturday. The final one was at the highest point of Bratislava, or somewhere really high up anyway- too cold to notice. We took a few wrong turns, almost froze to death (slight exageration) but made it to the top to see it was a War memorial. We walked down, went to a chocolate cafe, then a Scottish pub serving the best burgers, and called it a night after drinking a bottle of wine each. We got back on the Monday evening; I was going to stay until Tuesday but luckily I came back when I did because I subbed Tuesday morning.

Anyway after a slight scare that I’d spent all of my wages 3 weeks early the other day, the weeks are still whizzing by with each day different from the rest and weekends spent with the other teachers. I’ve been practicing my Czech but the Czechs are obviously keen to practice their English too, as although sometimes I will say something completley in Czech they reply in English! Oh well. At least we’re both getting something out of it πŸ™‚ So now I have an afternoon pre-school lesson to plan for in this cosy cafe I’m currently sat in, then back to the staff room to plan tomorrows lessons. Will post again next month with everything that’s happened so far in December!

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