Part of our whole trip also involved teaching in a primary school over there. Thankfully being the impatient fuck I am I managed to land myself in the P5 class so I wouldn't have to handle even crazier kids.
I was wrong.
We also all thought that those huge comfortable buses would fetch us to the school from the GEC like those that bring tourists around but fuck us, right? It ended up being a minivan that could only fit around 5 of us inside one!!
But there were multiple minivans so it's okay and my P5 group + Angus from the first day on became biased towards our female driver because 1. she was the only female driver 2. she gave us sweets 3. she cool like that yo. So we'd always make sure we get the minivan she's driving HAHAHA
There was also this other minivan driver who looks like a celebrity I cannot remember and Lindsay was going NUTS over him. Not only that, but he plays hot ass pasar malam music in the van too.
It's a party in the C H I N A
On the very first trip to the school I didn't even close the door properly (also why I don't have a driving license) and when it opened mid-journey everyone on the van freaked out except me when I was the one sitting right beside the door LOL! What can I say I live life on the edge
The school courtyard
We also had to give simplified names for ourselves because you can't expect kids in China to pronounce "Travis" anyway.
Soooooo my simplified Chinese name in China was PAO PAO! Simply because I'm Meat Pao. This shall all remain as part of my dark past...
Vanessa teaching the alphabet to her P3 kids
This little kid who clearly was reluctant in deciding to take a picture with me. His friend RAN AWAY when I asked for a photo. My life.
My class also keeps creepy sea creatures by the windows of their classrooms. I don't even know what to say anymore
I think I made a mistake on my very first lesson with the P5 kids because I conveniently picked up this cane on the table to use as a pointer at the blackboard. Benjamin was telling me later that night that the kids seemed scared of me probably because of the cane and suspects that the teachers use it to hit the students :(
The kids were really cute though!! And I think I did a better-than-expected job at teaching although Aravin kept saying that I have a "diva face" when I teach.
I don't know what is he talking about.
But to me the kids were all cute and all for only like, the first few days. Then knowing my low tolerance for kids, just as I expected, I got increasingly annoyed with them as the days went by. They literally DRAIN energy from me and I felt like drowning myself in horse shit!
There was once we played Simon Says and we didn't even know the Chinese translation so we just called it "Wo Shuo" literally meaning "I say" HAHA. They had to point at whatever body part that we say.
Basically I had to keep shouting in their faces "WO SHUO DONG NI DE LEG! LEG! LEG!!!!!!" cuz they forget the words so easily!!
Interestingly enough when we were going round asking them for their names most of their names started with either a "He" or a "(I forgot)" and we later found out that it's some village thing that I cannot remember the exact history anymore.
That together with the fact that the rest of the teachers (us) were crazy over the class monitor whose surname was a "Ge" led them to believe that he is actually a China prince oh my god
Before we flew off we even planned our entire ~*curriculum*~ for the kids including printing worksheets and all (which, by the way, Mr Chen wasn't too pleased about because we used so much paper).
The best part is on the very first day the teachers saw what we were teaching and told us to change it to whatever they were going to test for their exams so for the P5 kids we came up with the ultimate ~*cheat sheet*~
My handwriting very nice hor. Unfortunately I made the biggest mistake for writing the "y"s with the curved bottom because it confused them all between a "y" and a "g" so they ended up writing Monday as "Mondag"
Awww. To further aid their learning we even made a song for all the months of the year...
...even then you'd notice they confused February with September because the melodies for their respective parts are the same!!! LOL
We also have a song for the four seasons which simply goes like "SPRING SPRING SUMMER SUMMER AUTUMN AUTUMN WINTER!" It's so simple you don't even need to hear it to know how it sounds like!!! Or do you ;) (I don't know why I added that wink)
Look at Nicolene's shit face
Of course we had to come ~*bearing gifts*~... so one of them was a pack of those little round biscuits with the coloured icing at the top. I forgot what they're called. Jewel babies or something. THEY LOVED IT.
They love it a bit too much though because they ended up being very aggressive about getting more and when we left the entire packet to them they just fought their way until a shitload of them fell onto the floor. Tsk tsk tsk tsk kskt kstks kt
On the other hand when we gave them durian sweets on another day they told us they hated it and even spat it out immediately when we asked about it the next day LOL. In our defence before that we did ask them if they liked durians and they all screamed "YES!!!" but I guess nothing is better than da ~real deal~
That wall has more crack than a drugdealer
I even made friends with this small kid who wasn't from my class! The very first time I saw him he was wearing this yellow sweater with a giraffe printed on it and without hesitation he just handed me his sweet that was in his hand! I even remember that it was a cherry sweet which I didn't eat!
From then on I just kept oscillating between calling him "giraffe" and "my son". He was one of the few kids who could actually keep quiet!
Sadly "my son" didn't want to take a picture with me when I asked him to. I guess I'M NOT A GOOD FATHER
Everyone was hiong enough to take a picture with every single person in the classroom but I was so lazy I just settled for these. The girl on the far right is a devil child. Although she calls me a shuai ge (handsome boy) so that's lovely but on the very last day she scratched me which left a wound at the side of my mouth :(
She did it because the kids were hounding my ass trying to snatch my phone away from me even though I repeatedly told them I had no games on my phone! Well other than Scramble with Friends and let's be real, that game doesn't even come with language options.
So while I was crouching hiding my phone away the devil child just plunged her hand into some gap somewhere which ended up scratching my face which pissed me off so bad. In retrospect it's funny though but still.
You might be thinking this happened in a very secluded corner of the school. NOPE. It happened 1. in front of everyone 2. right beside Mr Pradheep who didn't even help but instead just stood there and laughed!!! WHAAAAT!!
But anyway before we ended our payless part-time jobs as English teachers in China we had a ~*closing ceremony*~ lovingly emceed by yours truly and Angus!!! His simplified Chinese name is ridiculous because he calls himself AnGOOSE so his name was simply "er" aka goose in Chinese.
It was my first ever emceeing gig so this is GOING INTO MY PORTFOLIO LOLJK and it was fun because I did it with Angus who doesn't even take shit seriously like me la so we just bullshat our way through HAHA. My wireless mic couldn't even work because it was out of the signal radius from the venue so I had to shout my ass off.
I don't really remember what we said exactly but I do remember that the last act of the day was by the P6 students who were going to sing this song that had the word "washing machine" in it so our script went something like
A: Pao Pao I'm going to EAT YOU *fake bites my arm*The best part is I don't even think they know what a washing machine is... there was also this other joke we made about how Angus said his mother was like a radio because all she goes is "NYEH NYEH NYEH" and nobody in the audience laughed so that's embarrassing
T: ARGH! *pushes A away* You've dirtired my shirt! Now I'll have to put it in the WASHING MACHINE!
A: Let's welcome the Primary 6 students with their performance!!!
Joshua also said that I have a radio voice but for Chinese radio HAHAHAH I don't even know if I should be happy or sad. Recently before the semester break I even remember crashing somebody's radio show and said on-air that they were tuning in to "收音机热滚" which actually translates to "Radio Hot ROLL" cuz I didn't know what "wave" was in Chinese HAHA. Ben also said that I sound like Wang Lu Jiang LOL I only know I sound like a HOT MESS
Okay so breaking the chronological order a bit, before the closing ceremony even started, during class we bid our goodbyes and even handed out souvenirs which were Merlion key chains and the kids were crying like shit.
Nicolene, Charmaine and Yong Qi were crying like shit.
BEN was crying like shit.
I didn't even know what to do. Angus and I did the Gangnam Style dance in front of them and they were still crying like shit.
They all then berated me afterwards for BEING A STRONG PERSON AND NOT CRYING which then made me cry like shit loljk I still didn't. In all honesty I was geniunely sad too but I just couldn't cry okay ;_; I do not deserve this harsh treatment
But I'm glad that at least we all made an impact to them and we were telling them not to cry because they still had a performance to do!!! But what touched me the most was when the students could even remember my name as we were leaving and we all took photoszzzz
With this VERY NAUGHTY P3 KID he was so annoying even though everyone thought he was cute. Ok la he's cute but STILL ANNOYIIIIING
The teaching journey has been great and I honestly don't regret doing so because at least we've done our part to help them in a way!
Of course China being China we had to really step down the standard of English by a lot because as the days went by we realised that they really do a lot of rote learning / memorization not just for English but even for mathematical sums!!
It's sad but there's only so much we can do since we're not equipped with actual teaching skills. All we hoped for was that they learn enough for them to pass their exams cuz it's the only way it'll open up more doors for their futures.
Most importantly, I've learnt that I can never be a teacher even if my life depended on it.
While us English-speaking peeps say "Cheese!" before a photo, over there they say "Qie zi!" which means "Brinjal!" HAHA
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6