Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Summer camp update

3 days of English camp down, 7 more to go. Tomorrow is supposed to be nice weather, warm and sunny... a true rarity in the past few weeks of monsoon season. So I've decided tomorrow is going to be American games day. I think we'll start inside, play "Heads up, seven up" and "Honey, do you love me?" and then head outside for some "Red rover," "What's the time, Mr. Wolf?" and "Colored Hair." I don't actually remember playing those last two, but they were pretty prominent on lists of games kids play, so I'll take their word for it. Plus, they just sound fun and they actually incorporate a bit of English as well, so that's a plus.

Just as a reminder:
  • Honey, do you love me? One person is it and everyone else sits in a circle. It has to go up to a target and ask "Honey, do you love me?" Target replies "Honey, I love you but I just can't smile." It then has to try to make target smile. If successful, target is now it. If not, it tries again -- I remember this from summer/church camps in the past and it was always a good time.
  • What's the time, Mr. Wolf? One person is wolf, standing with their back to the group, and everyone else lines up 30 feet or so away. They call out "What's the time, Mr. (Miss) Wolf?" Wolf says a time (It's nine o'clock!) and then turns around... while everyone takes that many steps towards the wolf. Wolf turns back around, and we do it again. If anyone gets close enough to touch the wolf, the wolf loses and we do it again. Eventually the wolf says "Dinner time!" turns around, and chases the group back to the starting line. If they catch someone, that person's the new wolf.
  • Colored Hair. Again, one person is the wolf. There's a starting line, a finish point, and side boundaries. Each person (not the wolf) picks a color, out of maybe 5 different choices. Wolf: "Knock, knock." Group: "Who's there?" Wolf? "A big bad wolf with (choose a color) hair!" Everyone who has that color has to run, touch the finish point, and run back to the start without getting tagged. The wolf chases... first person tagged becomes the new wolf.
I also liked "Statues," but I'm not sure how well it would work. In this, there are 3 groups: buyers, sellers, and statues. Sellers spin the statues 3 times and then give them a push. However statues land/fall, they have to stay that way. Then sellers tell them what they will be. Buyers come in and ask about the statues... sellers explain/describe their statues and then push the "on" button -- touching the nose. Statues come alive and demonstrate their role, and then buyers choose the best statue. Then the groups are changed. Sounds like fun, but perhaps a shade too difficult.

However, I've agreed to run a summer camp up the road at one of the local high schools. Pros: Well, 1 major pro, anyway. I get paid kind of a lot of money for it. And it's only 2 hours a day for nine days. And it should be a good experience. All the kids in 8th and 9th grade who wanted to attend the camp had to take a test, and I'm getting the top 20. So at least I'm hopeful that I'll have some kids who not only want to be there but have a decent level of proficiency in English. Cons: 2 major ones... it cuts down my vacation time by 2 weeks (but I've been saying this whole time I'm here to save money and not go crazy with travel, so I shouldn't complain), and I have no idea what I'm going to do with these kids.

The focus of my class is supposed to be conversation. I've got a few ideas, I guess... I just need about 15 more. For instance: roleplaying. I'm going to set up some scenes that involve Korean celebrities in different situations. Seeing an ex-girlfriend/boyfriend, talking to crazy fans, deciding whether or not to do an embarrassing movie role, etc... and have them act out the scenes. I've got some time to refine this, but at least they'll be interested (I think!) and able to express themselves in English (I hope!). Also, the statues game I mentioned above might be much more fun with this age group, so I might save it for that. 20 Questions might be fun also... and I think that there's a similar game played here in Korea so it wouldn't be a big deal to adapt it for an English setting. Oh, and Taboo! Get them to describe something without using any of the "taboo" words and the other students get to guess what it is.

Mi Sun said the English class she took in Australia was done this way -- mostly games -- so she's going to look through some of her old materials for ideas. Still, anything ya'll could suggest would be greatly appreciated. Remember, 14-15 year olds, high level of English... although in Korea that generally means high level of reading/writing, much lower on speaking, hence the conversation focus of the camp.

On a completely different note, the maintenance guy came by to look at my window frame this afternoon. It was leaking like crazy last night... water dripping (nay, streaming) down from this space -- invisible, but obviously present -- between my bedroom wall and the window frame. I had 3 different bowls and a pot catching streams of water when I went to bed last night... thankfully, the rain let up and they weren't yet full when I woke up. The dripping/streaming had stopped too. Anyway, I met the guy at my place after school today, and he went to work on his (hopefully) temporary fix. Which was to put up a sheet of plastic over my windows. Now, the main problem I see with this is that the sheet isn't really long enough to cover the whole window opening. So, he taped it to the wall above the leaky area, and then (partially) taped the bottom of the sheet to the windows themselves. Like, in 3 places, over a 5-foot wide window opening. I mean, I guess it'll keep my bed and wall outlet from getting wet, but he's just directed all the incoming water into the tracks at the bottom of the window frame...

I just hope this isn't the permanent solution, because with this sheet taped to the windows, I can no longer open them. I'm told that, this being monsoon season, nobody does outside construction-type work, and I just have to wait for the weather to improve. Wonder when that'll be? I hear that the monsoon only lasts a few weeks this far north, so I'm hoping to have this all resolved within the next week or so. But still, this can't be good: I mean, there's some serious structural integrity being breached, I'm sure, and this building is less than 9 months old. I even went out in the stairway last night just to peek at those windows, and sure enough! 2 out of the 3 were leaking in the same way mine was. Shoddy construction... tsk tsk tsk!

OK -- time to watch the new episode of Weeds and then get some rest! Peace and love, ya'll.


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jacksonbaby said...

I'm sure that is spam...just guessing.
I had all these games in mind, until I realized you were teaching older kids. Oh well. You might just do a google search for theatre games since those would require a lot of vocalization for the kiddos. The improv ones might be good to get them using more conversational language?

JohnFrye said...

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