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August 30, 2005

Time to Begin Again

Hello everyone!

Well...it's back to school time. Most of us are already deep into our lesson plans, smelling the fresh pages of those new textbooks and getting to know our students. As I faced each of my new classes this week, I was struck by how it's so easy to determine what each of the students will turn out to be like. There are the typical over-achievers, the slackers, the ones who think they know more about English than the teacher, and of course, the class clowns.

Don't you just love them all?

But even though we can generally easily put each student into a category, it's important to remember that changes can--and oftentimes do-happen. I was thrilled last year when in one of my classes, the "slacker" turned out to be one of my best students by year's end. And that class clown? Focused correctly, that energy can used to keep the class fresh and invigorating. The know-it-all will quickly settle down once he realizes that you aren't going to play his games, and the over-achiever can serve to motivate the rest of the class.

It's easy to get nostalgic about students, and each year, I find myself wishing that some of my students hadn't moved on, only to be pleasantly surprised when my new students begin to take hold of my heart.

It happens every year--I don't why I'm still surprised by it.

So, here's to this year. May all of us reap the unbeatable riches that I truly believe are only available in an ESL classroom!

Until next time,


Posted by msimmons at August 30, 2005 05:19 PM

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The pattern just keeps repeating itself with most students turning out all right in the end. I like a new group because I can tell all my old jokes again but better still I will be given them my best to enable them to move onto the next stage. Little do they know that I am also training them to be better human beings.

Posted by: Kenneth at August 31, 2005 09:51 AM

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