Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sometimes you just have to laugh! (part 2)

A good sense of humour is one quality that we look for in candidates interested in teaching in the inner city schools of London, UK.

Last week we highlighted some funny moments in the lives of our Canadian teachers. Read below for more hilarious moments!

The stories below were all pulled from our Coffee Time Teacher Interviews that are archived in this blog. Our teachers were responding to the question:

Describe the funniest thing that's happened to you in your year so far:

The funniest thing that has happened to me this year would have to be the time when a group of students and myself were playing football (aka soccer) and one of them accidentally kicked me in my foot. My foot was quite swollen and one of the students (who wants to be a paramedic) quickly pulled out his first aid kit (from out of thin air) and bandaged my foot. The head teacher insisted I go to the hospital and thought it would be a good idea if that student came along so he could get some first hand experience on what it would be like to be a paramedic. For the next three hours I was in the hospital with this student listening to him argue with the nurse about my X-rays. - TRUMAINE

There have been loads of funny things that have happened to me, but I think the first real culture shock I experienced was during a camping trip. I was walking home and saw something that was black and white - my first instinct was that it was a skunk. Then I thought, "Wait - wrong country, must be a fox," but when I got a little bit closer I realized it was a massive fox.

As I crept closer I realized it was a BADGER! And I had no idea what to do. Had it been a bear I would have been prepared but a badger? So I just walked passed it, about a foot away. Then the next morning I was informed that badgers are in fact very dangerous animals, and next time I see one not to go near it. So just watch out for the badgers! - SARAH

It was my first day in the Year 5 class at my school. I had things under control and everyone was on task and working well. One student puts his hand up. "Miss, what football team do you support?"

Since this was still my first week in London, I was still adjusting to some of the cultural differences between London and Canada. One thing I hadn't picked up on at this particular time, was how huge football (soccer) is, and how intense fans are. Not even thinking, I replied, "I'm not sure, we don't really have football in Canada. Which team should I support?"

This, of course, results in an all-out riot, with the children yelling at me/to each other "Arsenal!" "Liverpool!" "Chelsea!" "Tottenham!" trying to recruit me to support 'their' team. At the time, I definitely wasn't laughing, because I had to get everyone under control again, but looking back now, it's hilarious. - HEATHER

I fell on my face. It was also my favorite lesson ever. I got their attention while picking my way across the Year 1s room of miniature chairs and tables, with a giant costume basket in hand that offered more blind spots than clearance. I wasn't even half way through the gauntlet of tables when my toe caught on a chair sticking out and I went down hard, elbows first, leaving the costumes and chairs scattered and a class of six year old kids silent. The classroom assistant was a 6 foot 5 man who empathized that the tables were a little too close for comfort.

Red faced, I jumped straight into the lesson with the objective of "I can create a character." I became many things in the space of five minutes. While sporting a pint sized Monsters Inc costume, I took inspiration from our play time snack of bananas
to become the One-Eyed-Fried-Green-Banana-Eater.

I had way too much fun to be paid that day! Not only did I get to be silly and engage with all the students but I also got to see each of them on stage developing and sharing a character in the hot seat. It affirmed why I love teaching! - ERICA

There have been so many funny moments - students mimicking my accent, and helping me to imitate their own South London accents in return! My first year as a Drama teacher has proved hilarious.

A few weeks ago I spent an entire period playing a very interesting version of duck-duck-goose with Year 12 Drama students (aged 16-17) which had us all laughing until our sides hurt. There are some very special students here with whom I've shared a lot of laughs. It's definitely what makes the job worthwhile. - KELLY

I taught ballet at a girls school once. That was weird. I don't know a thing about ballet and neither did any of them. We just stared at each other for 45 minutes. - JUSTIN

There have been little interactions with the students that have really made me smile. For example, one day I was talking to a group of students as they were working on a project. Somehow, the topic of conversation turned to British television shows. One of the students asked me if I had ever seen a particular show at which point I told them that I hadn't as I didn't have a television.

A hush fell over the table. Shocked, one of the students at the table turned me and said, "You don't have a television? Then what do you do when you get home?!"

I tried to explain (without convincing any of them) that I filled my time reading, using the computer, etc and that I didn't need a television. However, I have since caved and now have a television set, so maybe they were right after all! - JESSICA

No doubt there are many, many more funny moments to report!

We'd love to hear from you, so leave your comments below!

And....if you are looking for ways to bring humourous moments (ok, there are challenging moments too...) into your teaching career, think about teaching in London, UK.

We're currently interviewing teachers (primary, secondary and special needs) who would like to work in London beginning October 2011. To apply, please submit your resume & cover letter to apply AT classroomcanada DOT com.

Resources for Teaching in London
Classroom Canada website
Guide to Teaching in London: A Survival Guide for Canadians ebook
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Canadians & Americans in the UK blog

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