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I guess it's about time for an update. I have no school today and tomorrow because of carneval, which is really nice so I can get some of my work done. As I am not a carneval person at all I am not distracted by getting drunk and falling around the streets. Though I am being distracted by other things... There have been some positive private changes - my frenchman came last week and started a 3 months internship in a bank in Frankfurt. Right now he's living at my place, but currently looking for a room in Frankfurt because it takes one hour to go there every day.. So if anyone has any suggestions where to get a room - please tell us!
We went to the movies in Frankfurt (there is a movie theatre that shows all movies in their original version) on saturday and saw "The good sheperd". I realized that my english skills got really bad. I hardly understood anything. That is, I did understand some parts, but I guess not the important ones, so I didnt get the movie. On top of that I was really tired and the movie was really long (two and a half hours) so I closed my eyes a few times... Might also be a reason why I didnt get it. Maxime spent the way back to Darmstadt explaining the plot to me until he got annoyed, because I really did not get a lot. It's hard to admit that he's better in understanding english than me now!

In school everything is going quite well. I'm enjoying to teach my own classes, to be able to do what I want! I can make my own rules, I am not being watched by other teachers... But I am also responsible for everything, like whether the students really understand and learn something, I have to plan and design the tests, etc. But what surprised me most is that I really like preparing my grade 9 computer science class. This was the class I was afraid of the most, because there are no school books and no course outline, so nobody could really tell me what to do. But that's a major advantage, I can just do it the way I think is best. And the kids also like the Robot Karol environment, so far it's going great. But there are big differences in programming and understanding speed. Some students get their whole assignment done in half of the time I had planned, and others have a hard time accomplishing the minimum of what they're supposed to do. "Binnendifferenzierung" is the keyword...
19.2.07 11:40

New classes

Finally they told me yesterday which classes I will be teaching starting Monday next week. It will be a grade 6 class in math and a grade 9 and grade 11 in computer science. I was hoping I would only get one computer science and two math classes, because computer science is a lot more to prepare. But I guess I have to start with it one time anyway, so better now than later. The thing is that there are no school books for grade 9 computer science. So basically I have to make up everything myself. I already know the students from the computer science classes from observing them during the last half year (in grade 11 I also taught a few lessons myself). So my plan in grade 9 is to do an introduction to programming using Robot Karol , which is a german 3D version of Karel the Robot. Right now I'm writing a script with the basic concepts in student appropriate language (there is a handbook, but it's too complex for beginners). And I'm thinking about fun and interesting exercises. If anybody has worked with Karel and has some ideas, please let me know...
Grade 11 will be a bit more difficult, they have a book there, but I don't like it. And the students always forget EVERYTHING they have learned in previous lessons. It's unbelievable! And not very good if you want to learn how to program (Delphi, in this case). So right now I don't have a great idea yet how to get them to understand at least the basic concepts of programming.

And about the grade 6 math class - I'm excited to see them the first time tomorrow. This week I still have some time to observe, next week it will be my turn to teach. Usually grade 6 is the age when the little cute kids start to turn into little nasty bastards. But luckily it's only the start, the worst is grade 7 in my opinion.

And there will be even more seminars than last semester, yikes.
So here we go.
30.1.07 09:42

Let the new year begin

To keep a long message short:

Holidays were great and lazy, school is already boring/frustrating again (started today).
15.1.07 17:55

Holidays are coming

...finally! I finished almost all my work for this year and am definitely looking forward to some days off. My "presentation lesson" on Monday went alright, the grade 9 kids were really nice for once and all worked really well. I counted the hours I needed to prepare for this lesson and for the paper I had to write for it: 20 hours in total. 20 as in t-w-e-n-t-y. That's crazy. And that's definitely not gonna work any more next year when I have my own classes and everything.
Right now I'm busy buying and making and presents and just getting ready for christmas. Inspired by an email I got from a friend today I was even creative. Results see below.

Merry christmas to you all!

20.12.06 22:37

Sankta Lucia

I almost forgot about it, but today is Sankta Lucia day! I wrote about this swedish tradition last year, which you can read here. Usually the Swedes also bake "Lussekatter" for this day, those are yellow cookies made with saffron. But I have never made them, and I have to admit I don't think they taste so extraordinary. I prefer "kanelbullar"...
13.12.06 15:28

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