Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Teach me, teach me, teach, teach me, teacher

High Point of teaching:

My new, precious 13 year old over-acheiver. Her Mom is Phillipino-American and Nicole gets embarassed by how loudly she talks on the phone. Her Dad is Chinese-American and makes Nicole memorize two new vocabulary words in the car everyday on the way to school. She's the shortest girl in her 8th grade class. I'm tutoring her for the SAT. (I know!)

I was teaching her the word "erosion" and asked her to make a sentence.

"On Sunday, when there was a rainstorm, it eroded the cemetary and all the dead bodies washed into the ocean."

Thank you, Nicole.

Low Point of Teaching:

Two years ago I was asked to tutor a boy going into the 5th grade. I usually don't tutor students that young, but figured I could give it a try. His uncle, who was insanely beautiful, made the arrangements and paid for the lessons. David, the kid, was a tiny little guy who was very very very into Grand Theft Auto. For our first lesson I had found a simple essay about a young man's admiration for his father. We read the story together, and then I asked him what it was about. He just kinda sat there with his shoulders slumped. I asked him if the person who wrote the story loved his father. He just nodded his head; he wasn't talking. I pointed out sentences about the dog they walked together or going on walks or eating dinner.

I said, "what kinds of things do you do with your Dad?"
Then he said "My Dad's dead."

That was probably even worse than the woman who was trying to pressure me into helping her plagarize after she'd taken me out to some bitchin' dim sum. Her parents survived the Holocaust. God bless us, everyone.

Let's end on a high point, cause it started raining here and I'm having a hell of a time:

Today I taught a 79 year old woman how to read the words "address," "telephone number," and "Social Security Number" in English. That's her, Sam Jeom Jeong, on the left in the red blazer.

I'd like you to try reading anything in Korean when you're 79.

1 comment:

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