I can’t believe half the school year has already passed and my students are still confused between a towel and a comb. Tawolllll, taaaawollllll, yeah, that’s right that thing you use after a bath! You DO take baths right? Why is it taking 7 months to get two words right? Perhaps because bathing is not fun for 7 year olds therefore remembering such words are hardly considered important.
Ice-cream, hotdogs and toilet, now these are words that stick. I remember when I studied mandatory French back in Canada; if you didn’t know the French word for toilet then you simply weren’t allowed to go! Strong bladders were built in that class.
Being a teacher has got to be the best form of revenge for being a horrible student. I had a good chuckle one night when my boss and I decided to take a belly dance class together. She was actually scolded by the dance teacher because she was chewing gum. Normally you don’t speak while gyrating unnaturally to sitar music, so I can only assume that she was not chewing and dancing in sync.
Whenever I attempt to speak Italian my students have a hearty giggle at my expense. I don’t really mind because they appreciate the fact that I am on even territory with them in the language department. I sympathize with their plight because I too must sit in a classroom and listen to some teacher drone on about towels and combs. The only difference is that I need to know these things to survive here and I actually like taking baths. I’m sure my students can’t yet see the true value in learning English, just like I couldn’t when I was forced to study French.
Sadly, I was a horrible student and never did grasp French beyond the very basics. What possible reason did I ever have to want to live in Quebec anyways? What I have retained has assisted me with learning Italian because they are both Latin based languages, but if I had paid more attention I would have noticed the world outside of French speaking Canada too. Luckily, my short-sightedness did not follow me into my adult life. (Ironically, I actually did end up living in Quebec as an adult because of a French boyfriend)
Next week I will return to school and drill more vocabulary into the little tike’s heads. The bonus of course is that I too am increasing my own Italian vocabulary…who knew that Zanzara was a mosquito! Now is that Zan-zar-rah, or Zanza-rah? Oh Dio, I’ve also got a long way to go.