Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Good students

I only had one class today. This is a class of first year nutrition majors at a women's university, and they're not very interested in English. Most of them will never use it, have not done well at it before, and find it all terribly baffling. There are twenty students and I do a lot of 'repeat after me,' because they like it and because their pronunciation is so very horrible and they like being corrected.

I've been doing the 'aches and pains' vocabulary activity and game with them, that I used at another place with such success. It took them twice as long as my other classes, but we did a lot of pronunciation work with it and they really enjoyed the chance to say occasionally rude things loudly in a foreign language. Also, because it is a single-sex classroom, I could do an extra game, which we did last week. In this game they had to mime the problem, say, "What's the matter with me?" and the others in their group had to say what the problem was.

It was a hilarious game, and it appears that this extra vocabulary reinforcement has worked. Today almost half the class was absent, and as I was calling the roll, whenever I got to the name of an absent student, they all shouted,

"SHE IS DIARRHEA!" at the tops of their voices, and laughed like hyenas.

I corrected them every time. "HAS!" I yelled. "Not IS," and they thought about it and then laughed when they realized what it meant. Then they continued using is. They thought it was funnier.

I asked them afterwards whether the absent students really had diarrhea, and they said no, most of them had caught cold. They'd forgotten how to say that, even though that was in the game as well. I guess it just wasn't as interesting.


Cheryl said...

You write such lovely posts - I always, always enjoy your blog. The trouble is, I never have anything witty to add and all I can 'say' is :-D !!

Wiccachicky said...

lol - IS vs. HAS. I would have had a good time with that game too!

The Village Idiot said...

Thank you Cheryl, exactly.

Your stories are complete and funny and can't be topped, but I get tired of just saying "well done", so instead I'll say "I is diarrhea!"

Faerunner said...

Thanks for once again adding a bright spot to an otherwise dull day :) Your students should be proud that they make us all laugh so hard! ^_^

Kim said...

well yeah! Everyone knows diarrhea is way funnier than a cold.