Monday, July 14, 2008

Why I Like Fridays but not Mondays

This week in the high school class, the topic is giving advice. Part of the lesson is a game. There are twenty different problems and the students have to come to me in groups and perform little dialogues explaining the problem and giving a solution. For each dialogue I give them points. For a basic performance and advice, they get a single point. If they've gone the extra mile, they get two. What I don't tell them is that if there is blatant, unabashed sucking up, they get three points.

Generally, at some point in the game, one team will refer to me as being really nice or beautiful. I surprise them with the extra point. Usually word gets around pretty quickly and the sucking up becomes a whole new element to the game.

Friday's classes cracked me up. They found more and more creative ways of sucking up in the responses. Some of the dialogues went like this;

"I'm always tired when I'm at school." "Oh, you shouldn't be. When you come to school, you can see beautiful Melanie and you will get lots of energy."

"I don't know what to buy my (girlfriend/boyfriend) for Valentine's Day." "Oh, don't worry about buying them a present, you should buy one for beautiful Melanie."

"I don't understand my English teacher." "Oh, if Melanie is your teacher, it shouldn't be a problem, her voice is very nice. If Sam is your teacher, then you should go and talk to Melanie."

"I want to go to Tokyo University." "I think you should study very hard and when you study, think of Melanie's beautiful face. Then when you're doing the exam, think of her beautiful face again and it will give you power and you will pass the exam."

One that caught them out though was this;

"Every time I eat curry, I get a stomachache." "Oh, you should eat Melanie's curry because it is delicious and then you won't get a stomachache."

They didn't get the extra point as I explained that I don't cook. My husband does the cooking. This was met with shock. One girl churned over this news for about five minutes and then came and asked me "Do you really not cook? Does your husband really do the cooking?" "Yes" I told her. "So he cooks, and you watch TV?" Not wanting to get into the whole dynamics of our marriage, I simply said "Yes." She stared at me in disbelief, then simply shook her head and walked away. Another boy, at the end of class came up to me concerned, "I think you should cook", he told me.

One team worked their way around this problem though and came up with;

"My mum won't make me lunch and I can't cook." "Well, you should go to Melanie's house and have her husband make you a delicious lunch."

So that was Friday. Pure joy, so much fun.

Come to Monday. Same game, same lesson.

Not only did I get almost no suck-ups, but in the warm up exercise, I jokingly said to a student "I want a new husband. What should I do?"

The advice? "I think you should diet."

No wonder I don't like Mondays.


Guzzisue said...

brill!! :-)

Syahiran Samsuddin said...

ahaha..i like this was funny

azumarisan said...

hahaha can imagine the looks you got when you said you don't do the cooking! What a classic!

That's funny "you should diet"..what the? :)

Peter Korkala said...

A great post, Melanie! :)

Melanie Gray Augustin said...

Thanks for the comments everyone! I keep having to remind myself that calling someone fat (or telling them that they should diet) is not the taboo or rude like it is in our culture....

Semsavblanc said...

What an absolute crack up!
It's great to hear you're having fun on Fridays. Gotta do something about that Mondayitis though!
By the way, your husband sounds like an absolute darling. What a blessing!

Jenny said...

LOL!! Oh so funny-you must laugh everyday lots:)

BigCat said...

What a funny game and responses. I love it. Apart from the last comment of course. I wouldn't want to be on the receiving end of that one. It's interesting that you say it's a cultural difference.

one little acorn said...

Very funny and very clever responses. What a great game.

muralimanohar said...

Hahaha...Oh, lord, what a hilarious bunch of kids ya got there! lol

Serena said...

Ah Melanie, I so love reading your student stories.. they always make me laugh.. what a fun job you have !!

Melanie Gray Augustin said...

Hey semsavblanc, hehehe... yep I just love my Friday kids and hubby is a wonderful one I must admit.

Hey Jenny, yep, lots of laughs with this job.

Hey Bigcat, even though it is a cultural difference, it's really hard not to take offence. I told the kid I wasn't going to talk to him for the rest of the day and he really had no idea what he'd done wrong.

Hey one little acorn, it was a fun one, a great one to get the kids talking, which is what my job is all about.

Hey Muralimanohar, yep, they keep me entertained :)

Hey Serena, thanks! Yep, most days (except for Mondays that is) are lots of fun.