zaterdag 14 juli 2012
Summer School is out!
Summer school is out!!!! Yesterday I signed about 100 certificates for boys in football shorts who I did manage (I hope so) to teach a few English words or Dutch. In a way this was the best way to make the transition between my 'old' and 'new' professional life. Because I got to spend 5 days in my new professional habitat and this close to my boss S, whose shadow I am going to be. So for once it was me who had to get out of bed early and had to make sure that P wasn't waking up because of the noise that the electric toothbrush produces.
Highlights of this summer school experience:
-I had fun entertaining the demanding football boys and some of them did surprise me. Especialy the 16 year old ones. Hard core teenage boys who I kind of assumed to boycot my classes. But they did not. Their level of English even surprised me and we were able to have even very long class discussions.
-The demanding 9 year old ones who were harder to teach because the weather conditions also affect your class atmosphere. Because for the moment we rather are dealing with showers, wind, and puddles did my younger pupils consider the classroom as a cool hangout place to show their circus-talent.
-I met up with some very talented boys whose ball-skills are just breath taking and who can kick a ball in a way that you are tempted to never kick an other ball in your life.
-I got to hang out with kids who love the green pit above all and who consider the shirt of Barca of Chelsea as their most valuable possession. I did run through the rain with teenagers who did not once complain once about the wet weather. They just seem to deal with it in a very mature way.
- Was welcomed by some nice coaches who did find the way to my heart with lovely tasting Danish and a kiss.
- Supervised lunch when I got to observe some loud kids who seem still to have a love&hate relationship with veggies. And that I still need to spend more time with the Japanese mothers next to baseball field because I still suck at basic Japanese vocab.
- Learning something about the rather abusve body language hooligans use and being even impressed that your pupils know some legends. I bet that you did not know that 'the finger' is connected to the battle of Agincourt. One of my football boys was able to reproduce this legend and tell it to class in English. I just sat there and was amazed who mature he did and that his mates did listen and not once showed their finger when he did ask for attention.
- Danced and sang in front of kids who gave me suspicious looks but this seems to be part of the job I did sign up for and so Stallie did show some of salsa-moves. No, there are not live images recorded of this performance. What a shame, you might think! Well, I don't because I can tell you that 45 boys starring at you like you come from Mars make you wonder if this was such a good idea after all.
- Letting some boys beat me at playing 'Bop it' and seeing the 'competetive edge' show up in their eyes. Their record still stands! They tried to teach me how to play poker but I told them that this is a skill only a pro-football player will need to manage when he has got a fortune to spill.
- Finding out that kids in my new school get to write till 6th grade with pencil only. I did not find one pen in my classroom.
- That there are kids who manage to only drink water between 9 am and 4 pm and consider their waterbottle as their best mate. Not one single coke-can did I spot during this camp.
- Analyzing lyrics from the Hot Chili Peppers and finding out that 16 year old ones still appreciate a song with a deeper meaning. But I did consider 'Blow my whistle' a less fitting choice. 'I don't think this is a song about the whistle of the referee.'
- Trying to figure out what boys are on the field the 'talented' ones and then finding out that it already shows in their attitude in class. Yes, there was a little boy who is considered fit to become a pro. But would you be able at the age of 9 make up your mind about the rest of your life? For now he seemed to be enjoying his ability to kick a ball in the right way. His name will stick with me for a very long time and if he does I will cheer for him.
- Being very surprised by some of the oneliners these kids produce. 'I don't like teamspirit!', made me wonder what this kid was going to do out there on the field.
- Getting to know my boss S, who is a a very sparkling personality. Who is not your ordinary teacher and not afraid of trying out something less forward. Her singing abilities are so much better then mine and she is a fighter. Fast very fast she is and she would be a great mental coach for the Belgian Olympic team.
- I also picked up some facts and vocab about football that perhaps will make score better when I go out during happy hour.
- Witnessed some boys crying! Big boys do cry when it involves a round flying object and they have to face bruises or painful muscles. That we had physiotherapist close by did seem to come in handy the longer the week lasted.
- That in football numbers matter greatly and that these boys are very superstious. Not that they will admit it! Plus routines also matter. Autism and football that is perhaps an unknow field of expertise but I can tell you that some these boys just seem to be programmed to do a few things and all the others they panic about.
- Spotting a 9 year old one with a Twilight Breaking Dawn, part I red wrist band while he ran out of the locker room . I bet he would love to have the speed of Edward when he is out there trying to run after that leather object. It made me smile and this time I did not make a remark about it because he might have been given this by a WAG and I did not want to create any tabloid headlines. But let me put this way that it still amazes me where I meet up with 'Twilight'! The football pitch is so far the most surprising spot. After all the Cullens prefer playing baseball to football!
To end some nice words by others:
" Football is all very well as a game for rough girls but is hardly suitable for delicate boys." (Oscar Wilde)
"Football is the ballet of the masses.' (Dimitri Shostakovich)
And because from September on I will be basically teaching on English territory this is I guess the only correct clip to go along with this entry: