Thursday, May 7, 2009

Because I love you

My routine with second graders--high school Juniors--at my school: listening, group work, writing, and speaking.

Today, this week actually, we will be debating how strict teachers should be in the classroom. The teachers hit the kids here. I should say some are very strict disciplinarians and remind me of College Prep at Cascia Hall with the Sisters and Brothers throwing erasers, slapping and pulling hair. Also the punishments usually involve something physical like repeated low bowing or push ups, for boys, or cleaning the school, for girls.

Some teachers are not disciplinarians. There really is no grey area. They either yell, scream, smack or not. Now, Jansori (patronizing scolding) is something that everyone does. It's a bad habit, in my opinion, but catching. As in, I am catching it--for another post.

So, I finished a presentation on vocabulary to use when debating. Some discussion about using the word because effectively. We'll see how this goes.

Korean students refer to this sort of exercise as PROS & CONS. Some are familiar with the process, some not. I hope they get into the spirit of arguing about how their teachers treat them. It may flop, though: I believe the students here think the teachers do not deserve criticism even though the students do not like their daily regimen. It's the culture.

In addition, I have been slowly working on building critical thinking skills. The students here are woefully lacking the ability to argue with reason and to speak their minds. They often prefer to be given answers they can learn--memorize--in order to score high on multiple-choice exams. So, in my classes, the students write and speak opinions based in reason.

Because is an important word.

No comments: