Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Mean Girls. I will spend a total of 12 hours watching it this week, and y'know what? It's still as good as it was the fir-- okay, no. But it's still as good as it was the third time. And the third time, it was really, really good.

The last 2 weeks of lunch with the third graders, I've gotten lazy and just bought them doughnuts (to my credit, it's not my fault -- my homestay sister has been studying for midterms and the computer is in the kitchen so I didn't want to disturb her). This week, I'll be back up to my old tricks, and I'm making the kids' favorite so far - peanut butter and marshmallow chocolate fudge. Yum. Check back for photos tomorrow!

This is a pretty great week - "Mean Girls" Mon & Tue, JJ visiting Wednesday (Mean Girls + snacks + honest-to-goodness American guy...my kids are gonna freak out), then checking out a local orphanage with Ashley S. on Thursday, with the intention of volunteering there the rest of this semester and into next year. Then I'm headed down to an island off the southern coast for a few days while my kids take midterms, and then my parents are visiting. I'm super excited about having them come and check out my school, and the country in general.

Any suggestions from people in the know about things for pescetarians to eat in Korea? I order the same few things when I eat out, and the rest of the time I eat with my host family. Here's what I can think of already:
1. bibimbap/dolsot bibimbap
2. sundubu jiggae
3. chapchae
3. Dwenjang Jjigae
4. kong guksu

My mom will likely object to things that are fried (though I'm planning to take them for pa jeon and makkoli anyway) or don't include a lot of veggies (strike omerice off the list)

Any suggestions?

Monday, April 26, 2010

Today's Lesson

What is written on my blackboard:

1. Conditional sentences
2. Irregular verb review
3. Short essay using conditionals and irregular verbs"

What we are actually doing in class today:

Watching Mean Girls.

Exams around here are serious business, and the kids are super, super stressed about midterms. Korean high school is 3 years, but most of my kids go to university after 2 years, and so their college applications only show 3 semesters worth of work. So these exams count -- a LOT.

Today I told them that they can study or sleep during class and I won't get pissed. Buuuut they all chose to watch Mean Girls!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Great Books Unit: Peter Pan & Paper Planes

Lesson of the Day: Introduction to the Great Books unit & Peter Pan
Video of the Day: pieces from the 1953 and 2003 Peter Pan films.

Lesson highlights:
Day 1:
-Ss explain as much of the story as they can remember
-Read excerpt of ch. 3 of Barrie's "Peter Pan and Wendy" and answer simple comprehension questions
-Watch corresponding scene in 2003 film (it's the one where Wendy sews Peter's shadow back on), and compare the print and film in small group discussions
-Watch film clips highlighting the most important plot developments, paying special attention to mentions and symbols of time and growing up

Day 2:
-Complete a listening comprehension worksheet, filling in missing phrases while watching the film
-Finish watching clips central to the plot
-Indulge in alliteration and childish whimsy with Peter Pan Paper Planes!

This lesson was pretty good, but what made it such a success was the paper planes activity. After two days of talking about the exuberant joys of childhood and the perhaps comparatively muted joys of adulthood, my kids (and, let's be honest, me too!) were thrilled to run around outside with paper airplanes. Fairy dust may have been in short supply, but happy thoughts abounded.

So a big thanks to JJ for coming up with the idea -- the guy's got a gift for genius outside-the-box activities.

Next week my kids are studying for and then taking midterms. But next stop on the Great Books train, in two weeks -- Sherlock Holmes and a murder mystery!

Class 1-2, and Peter Pans' Paper Planes:

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Peter Pan, Grade 2

Wednesday. Three two-hour blocks of teaching, back-to-back.
Wednesdays can go either way. But today seemed to go pretty well. After all, it was bibimbap day...

Today's Lesson: Peter Pan & Paper Planes
Lunch: Bibimbap & french fries!
Wednesday Third Grade Lunch Treat / Topics: DD donuts /Third grader's success at Houston science fair, doughnut preferences, my upcoming Sherlock Holmes lesson, optimal paper plane engineering, third grader's hopes for success at an architecture olympiad this weekend.

Today I combined the M&T lessons for first graders, and added a reading comprehension component, comparing the scene in the movie and book where Peter returns to the Darling house to find his shadow.

Pictures to follow.

Making paper airplanes. Unfortunately, even during super-fun lessons, some kids still sleep...

Flying outside:

Monday, April 12, 2010

Other Blog

I've finally started getting my act together to update my other blog, the one I created for work.

It's here.

On it, you'll find pictures and video of my students, and more professional (read: less entertaining) lesson summaries.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Monday, April 5, 2010

Banana Bread & Macaroons

Two new recipes - Cook's Illustrated (aka America's Test Kitchen) Banana bread recipe, and a recipe for chocolate chip almond macaroons that are way not kosher and turned out super yummy. Macaroons are super forgiving, so feel free to mess with this recipe a lot.

Basic recipe:
2tsbp sugar
1 egg white
1 can condensed milk
4 cups coconut

My recipe:
-14 oz Shredded coconut, unsweetened (America - that's 5 cups, or a standard bag. Korea - thats 6 of those little 70g bags from Home Plus)
-1/4 bag mini chocolate chips (or again, one 70g HP bag)
-1 14-oz can condensed milk
-2 tbsp sugar
-2 egg whites
-1/2 cup flour
-1/4 cup almond flour
-1/2 cup roughly crushed/chopped almonds
-3/4 tsp almond extract
-1 tsp salt

Whisk egg whites and sugar until frothy. Add everything else in. Place ~1" lumps on parchment paper at 325 F for 15 minutes. Eat.