Showing posts from 2021

January: A Month Online

Tomorrow, after being out of school for 7 weeks, 4 which were online, we return to our first full day of in-class learning of 2021. I am expecting that I'll be completely exhausted with a hard crowd to work with (most of my students are not looking forward to be back in school), and oxygen deprived (as new restrictions mean we must have masks on in class and during recess outside). But before we look too far ahead, let's look back. The past month of remote learning has been in many ways quite a gift. I had wondered what killing momentum for the winter break meant when it came to starting up school again, so to go from no school to only about 50% was a good step up (we only had 150 mins of synchronous learning each day). Teaching the upper grades meant my teaching time was in the afternoon from 12:30-3:30 which meant I didn't have to get up at 6 or 7, and didn't need to drive in the dark to set up my classroom. Teaching from home paused all the recess duties and dealing

A Hand in Every Tree

I don't know how you and your family spend the first day of the year, but in 2021, mine spent 3 hours mapping out a family tree with all our relatives and extended family members. I'll be the first to admit that whenever Chinese New Year comes around (which is soon!), I always forget who we are seeing, what to call them (in Chinese, titles are different depending on which side of the family they're on and if they are older or younger in respect to other family members - it isn't just mere "auntie" and "uncle"), and most importantly how they are related to us. In my defence though, we usually only see them just once a year. I've tried different memory tricks to remember who's who but alas, no success.  The three hours included calling close family in attempts to track down names (chinese names, english names and nicknames), country of residences and any standout notes (one of them is actually a professional and competitive ballroom dancer!) as