Thursday, November 02, 2006

Chinglish, Yinglish, and Engrew

Before I start with today, I have to write about how funny C.F.C. was yesterday.
I had been telling the class a story about myself when I was in high school and I mentioned my maiden name sometime in the middle of it.
C.F.C. piped up, all confused, and said, “One second…this story is about you or Miss ________? (My sister)”
I told her that that was my maiden name.
She lit up and asked me if I was related to their yearbook teacher.
The class was laughing at this point because they had all figured it out a long time ago.
“C.F.C.” I said, laughing, “Miss _______ is my sister.”
She nearly fell off her chair. “But you talk soooooo much more than she does!!”
I had to plotz.
“On second thought, you’re both sooooooooo skinny, so I guess it does make sense.”
I plotzed again.
Anyways, that was yesterday.
Today, the 8th grade got to watch a video because it was Rochel Imainu’s yahrtzeit. (My anniversary.) It was the biggest waste of a lunchtime I had ever sat through.
Once I started class, history was a ton of fun. I had made them all go home and find out who Colin Powell was because this class had never heard of him before. So we started the class talking about him.
Then we went on to discuss all the pointless wars the Americans and the Indians had. The girls wanted to know why the Indians weren’t as successful as the blacks in getting their way, so I taught them about how the Indians gave up their culture as soon as they saw they were getting killed for it.
I turned it into a nice hashkafa lesson on how special the Jews are because we never gave up our mesorah even though our people were killed for it many times. I told them that is the only reason we are still around today; because we have a mesorah we believe in. Lehavdil, the Blacks believed in freedom, and freedom in its own way, is a type of mesorah too. But when the Indians were prepared to give up their culture so quickly, what would guarantee for them to live on as strong as they once were?
The girls really appreciated the lesson, and I am patting myself on the back for getting myself so put together today. J
We spent the rest of the day on current events, but the lesson was funnier in 7th, so I’ll tell you about theirs.
In 7th grade, I had to give them a speech about being prepared for class before I could start anything, because I walked in 5 minutes late, and they were dancing to music with the desks all pushed to the side of the classroom.
After that was settled, I taught them about Chinglish in current events. Basically, we shared a bunch of funny stories of when people tried to literally translate different languages to English.
For example, to say “be seated” in Yiddish, you would say “zetz dich.” But the literal translation of “be seated” is “ver tzezetzed”, which would mean, “Go bang your head.”
The girls had a grand time.
They began getting off topic and discussing different languages and alphabets, and so I showed them the Russian alphabet on the board and then showed them how to spell their names in Russian.
I think I just became their hero.
Speaking about heroes, T.B.N. had asked me to go out during the video to the bathroom. I let her go, but it was taking forever and other girls were waiting for her to come back so that they could have a turn.
I walked out to the office to get a drink and bumped into the 7th grade Hebrew teacher and T.B.N. having a DMC (deep meaningful conversation) in the hallway.
I told T.B.N that she belonged in class, and sharply told her that other girls were waiting and that she was showing me that she was irresponsible with the time I gave her outside of class.
The other teacher said, “Oh I had no idea you were in the middle of class!”
No Duh.
She gave T.B.N. a huge hug and tried to make me look like the mean witch, but I don’t care.
If T.B.N. thinks her last year’s teacher is a hero; let her.
I still have about 8 months to figure out how to get my way….and I think I’m doing a good job so far.

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