End of Semester and Welcoming Chinese New Year!

(Gave all my students red packets full of chocolate)

The semester is drawing to an end before we welcome and the whole country goes on holiday for Chinese New Year. There is something so special about “firsts” and my first semester of teaching in China is something I foresee as always being incredibly meaningful in my life. My students, ages 4-11, have put in so much hard work this semester between the rolling of the eyes and “teacher no homework” complaints. My littles have learned to write the alphabet, blend sounds and read while my older students have learned to crank out five page essays like it’s nothing. I have been told dolphins look like me, pictures have been drawn of me dying by shark attack or explosion and I have gotten all the little squishy hugs. I have learned the art of bribing by stickers, taught them various high-five games to keep them focused and can shut their “bad behavior” with my famous glare. I have assured all the parents that their kids are wonderful and making progress (except that one kid who never does his homework….just kidding. He’s a doll). And most of all I have absolutely LOVED this first semester. I decided to write reflect and write a note to all my students.

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Duncan

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They say that college students are getting younger and younger these days. Apparently they really are, to the point where humans who have only been on planet earth for three years are now attending astronomy lectures. I met Duncan, age three, when I went into my astronomy professors office hours to discuss an exam when he dropped by with his mom and proceeded to give me two cookies and a kiss before he left. Already such a lady-killer! The next day to my surprise, little Duncan and his massive personality showed up in my classroom where he proceeded to sit next to me the whole lecture. To be fair, I had fresh-baked cookies with me; turns out that friendship can indeed be bought. He was the epitome of a good student during class. He raised his and asked his papa (the professor) for more goldfish, told everyone his favorite planet was mars and shared with the whole class that he thought we got the answer wrong. This kid is going places. Before class, I asked Duncan if I could interview him and he said yes, if I gave him another cookie.

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