Thursday, September 24, 2015

The semester has started!!!
First of all, I have to say that I am blessed with wonderful students - for the first time in a long time, I am getting emails and questions OUTSIDE of class time about class CONTENT and not just management - students questioning things I say or asking for more information!! So I guess I have excellent groups or I am doing something better that the frequency is increasing.

There's one pet peeve I have and that is students asking the following question: "Do we really have to read the TKT course/Spendlove book" (there are 2 required readings for 2 different courses)?

And my answer is the following:
"Are you telling me that you have something AGAINST more knowledge and understanding of the topics? Are you telling me that you only want to do the MINIMUM and you are only thinking about your GRADE at the end of the course?"

So I also tell them that if they have looked through the books and feel like they know the material, then that's fine - but most of the time they indicate that they have not even opened the books so how can they actually judge? And I think very few students would know the content of the books and be able to apply it to their classrooms because even myself, after years of teaching, can pick up both books and learn something new or remember something I had not thought about in a long time.

So that's my answer, dear students!!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Navajo Hands

So last semester we had three primary school classes at the Zurich University of Teacher Education. And my husband, as a "career-change" student had a course in social studies and science at my university where he heard quite often that science and social studies topics should remain within kids' worlds - so no Navajo for Swiss kids and God-forbid they learn about dolphins. Stick to Switzerland - the canton, the cantons and perhaps the bordering countries and whatever natural phenomena are close-by. So now my daughter is learning about Jura, though she's spent most of her summers amongst the Amish and even the Navajo at times:) (Note: I think she should learn about the Jura, actually but I would not have anything against other topics, either)

That out of my system, since this project (which involved kids from my village, so I still see them) and here are comments I've heard since then (a year and a half later):

Frau Büchel - I'm going to be a teacher, too!!
Frau Büchel - Did you know the Navajo helped end WWII?
Frau Büchel - Look! I have a sandpainting in my room now!!
Frau Büchel - Did you know that dreamcatchers are really just money-makers?
Frau Büchel - When can we come back?