Tuesday, May 28, 2013

No dejar de aprender

My oh my, so much can change in a few weeks. Well, I am almost done with my TESOL certification program. I have finished all 44 units and only need to submit a final short essay and original Lesson Plan.

I graduate from the NOW class of #11 program this Wednesday night, and I will be soon teaching English Conversation Circles at an additional location.

I'd like to get some more teaching experience before I start applying for jobs at English language schools, so I will have some extra time on my hands for a bit.

What to do with this time? Why brush up on my Spanish skills of course! I have found a free site online where I intend to "take" lessons and I will also attend the Spanish English Conversation Circles put on by the library. But first I will take a Spanish level evaluation. When I am done with my courses, I will take another evaluation. Hopefully, I will have improved greatly.

My three main reasons for brushing up on my Spanish are:

1. To talk fluently with my family members in Spain
2. To grow my brain cells (Learning a language makes you smarter!)
3. To put myself in the shoes of my English Language Learners, which will make me a much more effective teacher.

I even am planning a Lesson Plan about my experiences learning/re-learning a foreign language. I want my students to know that I respect how brave they are to be putting themselves out there.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Keep It Going

Well, I am now at the half way mark of my TESOL certification course. While taking it, my thoughts range from, "Oh, I know this"! to "Oh crap, what are they talking about?" My grades are in the middle to high 90's, so I guess I am doing something right!

In addition to the certification, I continue to lead (the badly attended) English Conversation Circles at a local Elementary school. When I finish my training for the NOW (Neighbors On Watch) program with the Vancouver Police Department in a few weeks, I will get my Wednesday nights back. So I will then be able to volunteer at an additional (well attended) English Conversation Circle at the library.

I've also talked to a local ESL teacher at Clark Community College and got a comprehensive lay of the land: job outlook, salary, what students are like, etc. (Hard to impossible to find FULL time work, pay is low, student comprehension tends to be at a basic level.)

And since life cannot be all about TESOL certification it's also time to change my weight lifting and swimming routines.

For swimming, I am changing the routine by adding 400 yards (8 laps) and incorporating more kick sets (using the kick board). This means I am up to 1200 yards (~3/4 mile).

For weight lifting, I am changing to a new routine, Oxygen Magazine's Head To Toe Training (May 2013 p. 118-120).

Ok, take a break when you need to, stay hydrated, and keep it going!