Two and a half weeks ago, the ISS began a new schoolyear. Its been an interesting ride so far, and I am kind of excited to look back at this year already. I'm learning so much!
I feel like the Incredible Moving Allison, as my third year at ISS, and I am again, in a new classroom. This year, I'm back with Junior Kindergarten, the 4 year-olds. Wow. You forget how tiny they are when you move up. Of course, you quickly remember though, as soon as they walk through the classroom door. We have a fabulous class this year. So far, 15, with room for 3 more. We have 3 Japanese kids who are new to the school, with no English. We also have 1 German girl who is also new, again, no English, at least I can communicate with her though. The rest of the class is an interesting mix: Mexican, German and American, American, German, Japanese, Swedish and Bosnian, Korean, and American and South African.
I'm already learning Korean from the Korean mother-tongue teacher. She taught me our "Good Morning" song in Korean, and taught me how to say, "hello" and "thank you" in Korean. I also learned from my friend Iris how to say, "sit down" in Japanese, which has definately proved invaluable this year!
We're out in portable classrooms this year. It is depressing to think that Germans refer to portables as "containers," as I always feel like I'm headed into a shipping container. Actually, they are connected, so that we have our own little building outside of the school, with rather large classrooms. The biggest drawback is the sound of the rain on the metal roof. We're all in a huge learning process this year, but the good news is that I will really end the year in a different position with much stronger abilities in the teaching field.
The teacher I work with this year is very nice. She is German, and only recently returned to teaching from being a stay-at-home mom. I give her credit, it can't be easy.
Of course, this year will be filled with ups and downs. There is a lot of stress, but hopefully, as we get more into a routine, the kids will as well. The kids are adorable though, and that's what is really most important!