My boss offered me a contract extension today, to which I replied that I’d think about it. Obviously I’m traveling first, but seeing that the UK is still apparently “buggered” for jobs, a steady job with pay-rises ahead and a possible share in a new school are pretty tempting. Nevertheless, it makes me wonder if my boss has ever actually seen me teach. Some days I’m good for sure; the kids are learning, they seem happy and the parents viewing the class through the windows (like cops surveying an interrogation) appear to be satisfied too. Other days, like today, I’m all over the shop. My teeth are hurting (permanent ones to be bolted in on monday – pimp my gums) and I had Magnus Pole visiting again on a booze soaked cloud of disaster. My head was not in the game. I did invent some new games however, all with the purpose to help waste some time in class. I present to you the first installment of my Teacher’s Handbook – an extremely useful education resource that will rank alongside wikipedia in no time.
1-Ball-Fan-Roulette. Attach one or more sticky balls to the fan attached to the ceiling (you will need a ceiling-based fan for this game to work. And sticky balls). Make the kids stand in scattered intervals around the classroom with their eyes closed. Turn the fan on. As the fan’s rotations increase in speed the sticky balls begin to lose their purchase and eventually ping off into the abyss and hopefully on to a child’s head. If a kid gets hit they win a prize. I’d like to point out that sticky balls are not hard and no kid has been harmed in the playing of this game (so far).
English used – minimal. “Stop looking!” And “Teacher, teacher! I got hit in the face!”
2- Draw an empty dream bubble on the blackboard. (I realise that in some circles one cannot refer to the board as black as denoting something purely because of it’s colour is judgmental and conducive to racism. Luckily I don’t move in these insanely sad circles. The board is black. Just like the green man that tells you it’s safe to cross the motorway is green. Get a bloody grip). Get a kid to stand under the dream bubble and pretend to be asleep. Then get the kids to shout out random words and draw what the ‘sleeping’ kid is dreaming of.
English used – high variety. Usual words used – “Poopoo! Alex is an ugly girl. Poopoo!”
3- Pull Tom. Tom is an insanely fat ten year old in my ‘Olive Class.’ If you don’t have a Tom you can use yourself. Get Tom to lie down and see if any of the kids can pull him across the classroom floor, like tiny asian huskies.
English used – almost none. I cry with laughter though so that’s what matters.
4-Kill the bubbles. Turn the fan on and start blowing bubbles using those wee pots of soapy water and the tiny hooped thingy that comes with it. Allot two kids as certified bubble-killers. Watch as they scramble around attempting the impossible task of preventing bubbles hitting the floor. It’s basically the closest I’ve got to recreating the final stage of The Crystal Maze. I am Paul O’Brien. (Was that his name?)
English used – minimal. “Teacher! Booble! Booble!” Bubble is a tough word for them. Booble is a far funnier replacement.
So that concludes chapter one of my Teacher’s Handbook. I hope you took notes and I’ll welcome any feedback, queries or, as unlikely as it may seem, criticisms. Recess.