*cloudy(s) thoughts*

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New feature

I put a new little feature on my blog (see left side under the links, a map of the world). I think it's pretty neat... Especially since at the moment I do have visitors from all over the world to this site, it's not just one big red blob. Man, do I ever feel international Thanks to you!

In other news I am still busy being here and there. Last week I held two more math lessons (grade 5 and 6), where the latter did not go very well. Of course that's due to the kids being quite nasty.

Today is a holiday-day in Germany (the german holiday?) so I neither have school nor seminars, which is nice. I spent the long weekend at my parents' place as a little bit of a refugee, since my apartment in Darmstadt is under construction. That is, "only" the kitchen and bathroom ceiling are being renovated. I hope it will all be done when I come back in a couple of hours... Keeping my fingers crossed.
3.10.06 15:30


Episodes of cloudy life

** Episode 1 **

Yesterday evening, 8pm, my apartment. Door bell rings (doesn't happen often). I go to the intercom.
Me: Hello?
Stranger: Uhm, hi. I was supposed to have a job interview at 8pm here in this house.
Me: Ok. And what do you want from me?
(Me thinking it's a stranger who just says a stupid excuse to get into the house to break in somewhere, and who wants me to just push the door opener since I live way up high on the 3rd floor.)
Stranger: Well, I forgot the name where I was supposed to go.
Me: Oh, that's no good.
Silence.
(Me thinking what the hell is that guy thinking?!)
Me: Well, at least there is no interview taking place in MY apartment tonight.
(After realizing that maybe that guy IS telling the truth.)
Stranger: Ok, I'll try the other apartments then.
Me: Ok bye.

I could have at least said something like - ok, good luck then. But my paranoid mind did not let me think properly.

** Episode 2 **

This morning, 8am, bus stop. A bunch of guys (maybe age 16 or something) walking aimlessly, one of them holding a map, looking for signs, obviously lost. One of the guys was even walking on crutches. I missed the chance of asking them whether I can help them when they walked by me, so I looked at them curiously until finally one of the guys had the guts to come up to me and ask me for directions.
They were like totally wrong. Like about a 10min walk from where they should be. So I asked what they wanted to do there, and the guy replied: "We have our midterms today and we're already 15min late!"

Maybe I should have told them to hop on the bus with me which just came by and was going in the right direction.

What a big advantage it can be to be able to read a map. Or to forget the pride and ask people for help.
27.9.06 16:33


The real stuff

So today I held my first real class at my new school: grade 12 math, integration. It was ok, I felt comfortable up front, I had just planned a bit too much for that lesson. That is, I didn't expect the students to have so many problems with what we wanted to do today, so everything took a bit longer than what I had planned. But that's how it is I guess.
And then when I was observing in grade 5 the teacher asked me to take over for a while because she had to get some photocopies. That was good as well. It's nice to finally get some responsibilities and not just sit around all day. But for now I find grade 12 a lot easier to handle than grade 5.

And all this while I'm still having a cold. This morning I was afraid I wouldn't be able to speak, but then my voice came back, luckily. I've been sick since last thursday, and I feel that now it's time to get rid of that damn cold. I don't like it.
25.9.06 17:40


Here there and everywhere

I thought I would be able to go to school on a more regular basis. This is actually one of the only weeks where I'm able to go to school every day. Usually I have a seminar at least once a week. Last week and next week I only have two days at my school. That doesnt really make it easy to observe classes continuously. Nevertheless I think I now have a fixed schedule which seems to be ok. Also two of the teachers where I'm observing asked me to hold a lesson, so the first 'real' ones will be on Monday in grade 12 math and grade 5 math. The grade 5 kids (age 10) are still very cute, they always have a lot of questions in the beginning of the lesson, concerning everything what you could possibly think about. You have to be careful not to let everybody ask everything what's on their mind, otherwise you would never be able to do some math....
Today I watched the grade 5 class while sitting in front (usually I sit in the back) - it's really interesting to watch kids' faces. Some really really want to be called when raising their hand to answer a question, they almost stand up and make noises "mm mm". Others just sit there dreaming on and on. And then there are 33 of those little kiddies. Not easy.
20.9.06 20:11


Surprise surprise

Today in the teachers room, the break before the computer science classes that I wanted to observe, teacher x: "So you and I will have two grade 8 classes together now, [teacher y] is sick."
Me: "uhm, ok".
So I held my first class today without knowing anything about the curriculum what they're supposed to do, without knowing how the students get their computers working (like account names and user names and passwords to get started), in the new computer science room that almost exploded yesterday. But since they didnt really give me any time to think about it I wasn't nervous at all, and I wasn't really left alone. Teacher x came with me in the class to get started, and when everything was working (surprisingly!) he left to his class. And I didn't really have to do a lot since they had an exercise to work on (getting started in MS Word), so it was totally fine.

Whereas in the second grade 8 class (that I was also supposed to take over) the server all of a sudden didnt react any more and it seemed like the hard drive is broken, so we had to send the kids home early, because they couldnt access the computer accounts any more. And I wonder if there's anybody who can fix the server. Not me in any case.

I think my computer science experiences at that school might be really interesting. Though what they're doing in grade 8 I wouldn't call computer science. It's more like getting to know standard software, learning how to use the computer etc. But I meant more my cs colleagues, because they are really laid back, 'don't worry, everything will be fine', etc. Whereas I am more of the worrying kind and trying to think of everything in advance (which is impossible in school but still I try). So I'm hoping to learn from them how to keep cool. At least it was a good start today.
5.9.06 21:27


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