Lesson Five — English Manners 12/10/15 to 18/10/15

  1. Introduce Words Manners — Lĭmào Polite — Kèqì Rude — Wúlĭ
  2. Greetings Polite formal: Hello! Good morning/ afternoon/ evening Handshake with right hand How do you do? How do you do? Pleased to meet you. Pleased to meet you too. Polite informal: Hi, Hey, Alright? Hug, Pat on the back Mornin’, afternoon, evenin’ Nice to see you again I’ve missed you Rude: Limp handshake No eye contact/ too much eye contact Grumpy
  3. Dialogue Formal: A: Hello B: Hello. Good morning. A + B: *handshake* A: How do you do? B: How do you do? Pleased to meet you A: Pleased to meet you too. Informal: A: Hi! B: Mornin’! Alright? A+B: *hug* A: It’s nice to see you again. A+B: *pat on the back* B: I’ve missed you. Rude: A: Hi A+B: *limp handshake* B: Hi A: *Too much eye contact* A: Pleased to meet you. B: I’m not pleased.
  4. Dos and Don’ts Don’t: Burp, pass wind, spit, pick your nose Talk loudly, play loud music FOREIGNER! Stare at people Do: Cover your mouth — yawning, sneezing, coughing, burping Bless you when someone sneezes Queue Please, Thank-you, Excuse me, Sorry

This week’s lesson on manners opened up a slightly more humorous lesson, which mostly involved me making a fool out of myself. Especially when a lot of examples and demonstrations have to be shown. Most of my classes really engaged in this lesson though, and laughed pretty hard when they got to make a raspberry on the back of their hand to make the sound of a fart. I have made some true Englishmen. Due to the fact that the whole lesson I would be making a fool of myself, there are no embarrassing stories to share for this week! Yay.

The weekdays were pretty relaxed. The coffee shop I mentioned before, where Leon took us, is called 33 home so we decided to visit there again for our two month China-versary, and on the way to our lovely western meal we came across a ram in a van. Seems legit.

On Friday Jiang took Juliette, the Thai exchange students and myself to a park — NanShan Park. It was recently built but very, very beautiful. We ate our breakfast at the New School and were slightly baffled when the Thai students came in and purchased a pretty substantial amount of steamed bread. Jiang later told us it was for the fish, huge fish coloured orange, white, gold and red. When we finally found the lake and started to feed them it was amazing — the fish gathered to the pieces of bread thrown in the lake like tween girls to Justin Bieber, diving over each other just to get a piece of the action. It was a pretty hot day but the sights were worth it.

Later that evening we had made plans with one of the BSC teachers from Beijing who also happened to be living and working in JiuJiang, Will. He had waited outside James and Matt’s house to meet them and ask us all out for an evening. He brought along another BSC teacher, Melissa who was also lovely. We went for dinner, then a coffee shop where they introduced us to a Chinese-American called Philip. Philip is a teacher at the University and is a strong believer in learning by doing. So he told me a few sentences, counted to three and pushed me towards the waitress in the coffee shop. I had to say hello, give my name, ask her name, say she was beautiful and then ask for a photo and WeChat. It was so scary for me I was shaking the whole time but I felt pretty accomplished after would. It was a pretty fun evening and we also found out that Will was a past PT volunteer who taught in Uganda in 2011, and he told us some pretty funny and interesting stories.

The wonderful waitress

On Saturday the director of our school, Becky had invited us out on a day trip. Becky took us to the next county over in Jangxi called Yongxiu. It was about a two hour drive and as Juliette and I had a late night out, we welcomed the long car drive. Becky’s son had a test in the morning so we picked him up on the way out when he was done. He hopped into the car with a confident grin on his face and nearly shouted in our faces “Hello! I am ___, my English name is William. I am 9 years old. I think I am a sunny boy!” To which we replied our introductions eagerly too. There was some small talk at the beginning but we ended up falling asleep in the car. When we arrived it was around 12 O’clock and lunch time in China. The group was pretty big, around 15 to 20, so we were split into two different banquet rooms where we ate lunch and rested until about 2 O’clock. There was then another car journey, about 30 minutes, to our destination — orange picking. We spent a long time orange picking and it was great fun, I felt as though the country girl in me came back into action! There was man who was very eager to show us everything and talk to us but with little to no English. He was still a sweet man. Another helped me carry the hassle that was the orange basket through the slops and rows as Juliette was taking pictures. Once collected and transported back we headed off to dinner. It was a restaurant in the middle of the tea plantation. It was too early to eat so we went for a walk/ photo shoot. One thing we noticed is that the Chinese (and Thai exchange students) really like to take photos of the in interesting poses of the places they go… and dedicate a lot of time to it. The dinner was eaten quickly and we stood outside for a short while to get some air and then witness William and his friend making a camp fire in the middle of the road.

We slept all the way back and returned around eight O’clock and thanked Becky for taking us, as well as carrying a ginormous sack of oranges with us. Ready to flop into bed for a six O’clock start on Sunday.

One of my students, called Peggy, had invited Juliette and I out on a day trip to her home town in Hukou. We had to meet at seven outside the school and at precisely seven twenty five Peggy came to collect us. She took us back to her flat and introduced us to her family before we took off. Hukou isn’t too far away, and probably closer to Pengze. It’s much smaller that JiuJiang though. JiuJiang had around 10 middle schools each with several thousands of students. Hukou had two. Peggy showed us around the town and to her home. IT. WAS. HUGE. Three floors with a roof top, one of the floors was not even being used! How I wish I could live in a house like that. We had a fun day, and her cousin the same age as her came around with us too. Her grandmother cooked us and amazing lunch and when we got home later in the afternoon we were pretty happy. Again though, we sat down at our desks and began to plan for the next week ahead.

Class Notes:

Old School: 201 — Good class, worked well and enjoyed the lesson 202 — Good class, although serious they are still fun and very engaged. A joy to teach. 203 — Just about followed, still a fun lesson. A good class and Ma Ling more helpful 204 — Low English ability and quiet — try to make them louder! 205 — Crazy and playful. Try to keep them under control. Still fun to teach. 206 — Still silly, need a lot of energy to keep them engaged. 207 — Happy class, easy to control 208 — Teacher wanted to do a test, class missed. 209 — Good class, listen and engage. Pair work is really beneficial. 210 — Slightly more engaged

New School: 201 — Loud and energetic. A good class for the last class of the week. 202 — Quiet and listen well, not all that enthusiastic. 203 — OK class, more talkative, some do other work at the back. 204 — Ridiculously loud. Enthusiastic, repeat well and easily distracted. 205 — Normally a good class but not as focused this week, less enjoyable than usual. 206 — Class is extended 10 minutes. OK lesson, on and off engagement.