Tag Archives: smart monkeys

Into the light of the dark black night

For “Journal Writing” class yesterday, I gave my little guys an assignment to reinforce making the “Writing Hamburger” (main idea as the “bun” and the details as the “toppings”) as well as starting to create metaphors and analogies in their writing… without going into details quite yet about metaphor and analogy. They are seven.

The topic was “My Favorite Colour”. These three little weirdos all picked black. They were given the opening sentence (“My favourite colour is…”) and closing sentence (“I love the colour…”) to help them with the hamburger. Then they had to answer the following questions about their colour:

How does it look?
How does it taste?
How does it smell?
How does it feel?
How does it sound?

Haha. You should have seen the looks on their faces when they realised they were going to have to tell me how the colour black smells. But I gave them a load of example using my favourite colour (red, if you’d like to know) and they were off.

Lilly proofreading her work like a boss.

Lilly proofreading her work like a boss.

They did a great job! Some of the ideas were pretty basic (and they all seemed to think that black smelled and tasted like chocolate), but there were some real gems in their paragraphs that I would like to share with you. These are taken from all three children. Jessica, Lilly and Albert, 7 years old.

 

Black is scary, dark, and looks like a thief. It sounds like a ghost’s howls. Black is like a cat that rests in the library. It is the sound of lightning in the night. It feels like a ghost is holding my arm beside me.

 

I freaking love these children!

Williamsaurus

William is Korean aged 10. He is a very smart and sensitive third grader with the cutest dimples when he smiles… so I’m always trying to make him smile.  He’s almost always got food on his shirt and he’s a funny kid although his sense of humour is sometimes strange. He is full of saliva and always smacks his lips when he reads. And he reads like a mini Korean Shatner.

So the other day in class there was some weird sort of brown spooge in his workbook. He had been eating chocolate when I came in the classroom so I said, “Ew. Is that chocolate?”

Without batting an eye, William scratches off the brown smear and sniffs at it. For a moment, I seriously thought he was going to eat. I would have let him. I’m a bad teacher sometimes.

Random Children Chatterings

Although I do have complaints about my school, I have absolutely nothing but love for the kids I teach. They. are. amazing. They make me laugh almost every single day and all the hugs and smiles are great. Here are a few recent bits that happened that made me laugh.

Albert Speaks 1

Albert. Again.

This kid. Seriously. THIS KID.

Me: What is the opposite of “female”?
Albert: Jew.
Me: WHAT?! “JEW”??
Albert: No! Jew. JEW. (makes a ‘z’ gesture)
Me: Do you mean “zoo”?
Albert: Yah. Zoo.

I don’t have any idea what he was thinking. Neither did he, he wouldn’t even try to explain once Jessica said the right answer.

 Albert Speaks 2

The workbook had the word “near-sighted” in it, and the kids didn’t know that particular word. I broke it down into the two parts, and was trying to get them to give me another word for “sight”. They had no clue. Thanks, level-appropriate book.

So I pointed to my eyes, trying to get them to say “look” or “see”. What does Albert come up with when I pointed at my eyes?

Excitedly he exclaimed, “Dark circles!”

Clearly I need more sleep.

Nice Try, Robinsaurus

Me: (teaching analogies) What is to “hand” as “ankle” is to “foot”?
Robin: Hankle.

Random Children Chatterings

There were a few gems over the last week or so. Thought I’d lump a few together into one post. Save us all some time.

Evan the Heretic

In one of the 11 years old elementary classes, we are prepping for TOEFL. One of the reading passages was about the death penalty (we’ve also covered the holocaust and a few other cheery topics).

Evan says, “I don’t need to read this. I know all about the death penalty.”

I said, “Oh really? What do you know about it?”

“Well,” he says, “I had the death penalty happen to me in a past life. They punched and kicked and burned me alive for saying that the earth went around the sun.”

That kid is too hilariously smart for his own good.

Stop Hitting Yourself

In one of my kindergarten classes Justin kept asking “who’s punching me?”… while punching himself.

Beer Cup

Kindergarten Ethan rarely answers questions correctly, and I loved this one. There was a picture of a glass that did look a lot like a pint glass. The children all guessed “cup” when I asked “what is this?”

I told them that wasn’t the correct answer. After a pause Ethan pipes up and says, “BEER CUP!”

That kid is going places.

Stinkypants

So, one of our teachers doesn’t smell very good. As in, eye-wateringly bad some days. Last week he took to showering in Axe. He was teaching my kindergarten homeroom for a block, and I had to go in there after him. It stank so badly of Axe, I would have known he had been in there even if I didn’t know my kids’ schedule.

It was so pungent that I asked, “Was [teacher’s name] spraying something in here?” while miming spraying myself with something. It was so strong I figured he must have reapplied in the room. And that’s pretty fucking sick.

“No, Teacher,” Luna replied with her nose scrunched up. “That’s just his body.”

Awesome. Even the kids think he’s the stinky teacher.

Today’s News

That 2:30 class. I love them. Today during reading time, Jessica and Albert started reading like newscasters. Saying things like “Today on Albert News”, and then reading the page of the story like a newscaster. Albert would finish by saying, “Thank you to listening to my news. Over to you, John.”

John was singing his pages whilst dancing. And while he was doing that, Jessica and Ellie were miming taking pictures… the paparazzi.

But perhaps my favourite was Lilly. While the other four children were being monkeys, she just smiled her patient Mona Lisa smile, waiting her turn, and then reading as seriously and perfectly as she always does. What a kid.

A House is a House for Me

My 2:30 elementary class may have the best kids ever in it. They make me laugh pretty much every day. Right now we are reading a story called “A House is a House for Me”, which is a pretty epically long (epically long if you are 7 years old and reading in a foreign language) about how all sorts of things can be considered “houses” for things… if you stretch the meaning of the word “house” a little bit.

We’ve been reading this story for a couple weeks, so to do something different, today I had them close their books and I “quizzed” them on all the different type of “houses” mentioned in the story. Which, keep in mind, we’ve read oodles of times. These were the three best responses.

What is a house for a pea? “A pea is a house for a sausage.” – John (yes, that John)

What is a house for a foot? “PANTS!!!” – Albert (yes, that Albert)

What is a house for a corn ear? – “An earmuff.” – Ellie

My favourite answer was Albert’s, because he was SO CONFIDENT in his response that he stood and shouted it. You should have seen his little face when he heard the correct answer. Too funny!

>Got to admit… this got to me…

>

Hi,Jodi.t….♡
I am so sad, because I want
to see you so much….♡
Where are you?
Do you have a nice day?
I have a “Song Book”.
I didn’t lost it yet…♡
I to cry…….
Sincerely,
Esther.B♡

>This is why I miss the wee buggers

>How could I not? Here is a recent email from Jessica (the same one who asked me how to be popular).

Dear Jodi teacher

HI,teacher! I suppose you are very busy. Now my vacation is coming end soon! I’m pleased! Bye! Hace a nice day!(you are my siruis.You who is siruis,don’t you? The man who is harry’s godfather,harry always send owls to him,That’s why you are my siruis.Haha^^Bye!

Love,

Jessica

Original Comments:

Carey wrote (on 27/09/08):
I can’t wait to hear all about your moms visit and portugal!

>How freaking cute is this?

>

I still get emails once in a while from the kiddos, and it makes me insanely happy. I need to be reminded that they remember me. Anyhoo, here is a recent one from Jessica, who I taught when she was 9-10 years old…

Dear Jodi teacher

I’m afraid that i didn’t email you very often.I’m realty sorry. i was too tired doing homework and dealing with my betrayal friends. One of my best friends betrayed me in very awful way so I’m outraged. I;m not that popular among my class.It’s a kind of worrisome.

Are you watching Olmypic? It’s fabulous. Korea is extremely excellent at swimming, pencing, Archery, and so on.Korea is leading third! I wish Korea could beat that nasty China.I think judgement was quite unjustice for Handball men.Bye then! I’ll mail you son!(could you tell me how to be popular?And watch Olmypic! Have fun! Bye!

Love,

Jessica

First, how freaking smart is she? That genius vocabulary (she’d be 12 now) is alllll thanks to me. The spelling mistakes and such: not me. Anyway, I also think it is freaking cute that she asked me for advice on how to be popular. CUTE! This is what I told her…

I am very sorry to hear that one of your best friends has betrayed you. That is terrible news. I feel very sad for you. Any betrayal is very painful, but it is more painful if a friend does it.

Jessica, I wish I could tell you how to be popular. I could say what grown-ups always say, “Be yourself”. And although that is a very good thing to do, I can’t promise you that it will make you popular. I can tell you a true story though. I was NOT popular when I was a little girl either! I worried more about being a good girl and doing all my homework, so I did not have very many friends. But you know what, Jessica? Now I have many, many, many friends! You are very special and a very good friend. One day you will also have many friends. I know it is hard, but you might have to wait for a time when there are people around you that are good enough and special enough to be your friends. Then you will be popular. Try to be brave and wait for them.

I don’t know if it is the right advice to give her, but it was the most honest thing I could think to say. She really is such a sweet, smart little girl, I hope it works her.

>Again – smartest wee monkeys in the world

>

I emailed Jessica to tell her that I heard the sad news about the Namdaemun fire. Here’s her reply:

Dear Jodi teacher

HI,it was very awful,awful happining.The police think that someone burned it because there were ladder and 2 lighter.Some poeple also saw a man climbed the ladder.the firefighters had hard time puring water so that the fire would die because they didn’t exactly know what part was butning!!!How ashame!! The koreans are in a bad mood. their mind are full of sadness,furious and deploring.My family is one of them.My grandfather estimate it would be North korean,.Japanese or Chinese.Doesn’t it make quite sense?Also he is guessing that it might be the person who has a bad feeling about new government and try to insult them by making social confusing and furious.I do not hope it don’t invilve any politicaleffect because that is nothing to do with new government and the soon will Namdamun be fine take a shape as it did .Bye! Take Care!

Full of Love, Jessica

>One more sleep

>

Even though going to Thailand has been in the works for weeks now, it hasn’t felt real. It is starting to feel real now that I am packing bags and only have one more sleep until I get on the damned plane. And I’m a wee bit nervous. How did I go from never going anywhere to going everywhere?? This is craziness…

Not much has been going on this week except my absolute sickness and working. I even took a day off work, I was that freaking sick. I’m still not better, but I’m still getting on the damned plane. I don’t know how bad I would have to be before I would miss this trip… flesh-eating disease. Maybe.

Last week, a package came from my moms (thanks moms!) with many treats in it… I’m so happy about the cinnamon gum I’m giddy. But the best was a present addressed to “Jodi Teacher and her Monkeys… from Santa”. The kids went, well… apeshit. It was hilarious. They kept saying “Jodi Teacher, you writing? You writing, right?” And I kept assuring them that no, no… it wasn’t me. That “Jodi Teacher’s Mommy” said Santa left the present at her house by mistake and she had just sent it along for him. They bought it.

::SIDE NOTE::

Christmas is fun with a group of people who still believe in all of it. The monkeys have been crazy this week – and every once in a while they break out in “We Wish You a Merry Christmas”, which is sung mostly phonetically.

::END SIDE NOTE::

The present ended up being “magic trees” that we could put together. Fun! The kids had a great time, and I took a bunch of pictures. They are at Flickr, if you want to see happy monkeys. I also took pictures of my PK (afternoon) kids. They can be cute sometimes too. I have to give them all tests tomorrow afternoon and I feel like a Scrooge. Merry fucking Christmas, bastards – write your damned test on the last day before holidays (insert evil laughter here).

So… I won’t be online until after December 31st. I WILL be on the beach with a beverage in one hand and a novel in the other. Aaron promised we can go look at monkeys (real monkeys, not Korean children). I should have lots of pictures (of MONKEYS) when I get back.

In the meantime, Merry Christmas everyone. I hope your holiday is happy, safe, and is spent with people you want to spend time with (I mean, as best you can without me there with you). And because virtual kisses just aren’t the same, consider this my IOU for a big, sloppy, drunken New Years Eve kiss, which you can redeem the next time you see me (no matter when or where that happens to be). Cheers!

Original Comments:

Jeanine wrote (on 27/12/05):
Merry Christmas Jodi!!! Miss ya and hope you have an awesome wicked trip!
Thanks for the card too. A little bit of news for you….Christa and Randy are expecting a baby in Aug 2006 and Brynn and Matt got engaged on her birthday! Lots of changed coming up. Nothing really new in my life. Bought a car last weekend, so I will be working extra hard now! Haha. Talk soon, be safe and drink lots, J