First taste of teaching

Today I finally got my first chance to teach a class. I've been at my junior high two full days, but because of school-wide tests, I haven't really done much outside of the staff room. I did grade a few short essays, and recorded the listening portion of a few tests, but I haven't had much interaction with the students in class.

That changed today with my first day at Nishi Kawanobori Sho. I knew yesterday that I would be teaching ichi-nensei, ni-nensei, san-nensei, and yon-nensei today. My JTE and other teachers at my junior high were saying things like they were worried for me. I don't know if this is a lack of faith on their part, or a fear that little Japanese kids would destroy the new foreigner. Either way, things couldn't have turned out better.

I was suprised to learn that I would be teaching the ichi-nensei during the first class. I had my introduction ready, as well as animal flashcards for after the introduction. The kids were all extremely cute and suprisingly attentive. By the time I was done with my intro I already felt totally at ease with the kids. We played listening and speaking games with the animal names. I was suprised how well all of these cute little 6 year olds were doing. The class went great, and word spread around the school fast that Justin Sensei's class was really fun. The rest of the day kids kept stopping by to say hello, or just to check me out.

My other three classes went just as well as the first. After my first full day of teaching, I'm starting to get the feeling that I can not only handle this job, but I can do it well. I watch enough Japanese children's television to know what works and what doesn't. I never thought I'd get the chance to use that knowledge, but here I am, performing live five days a week!