Saturday, September 24, 2011

Sweet Spot

Speech!  Speech!  Speech!

For the last few days, I (and the other foreign teachers) have been receiving invitations to speak at student clubs.  Our campus has 50 or 60 student organizations, and they are now recruiting and training new members.  They want us for our foreign faces and for the chance to show off some native English to their new freshmen.

The other foreign teachers went to Qingdao for the day.  As the sole remaining foreign teacher, I agreed to speak to two student associations today.  They said to say anything, as long as it's in English.  They said to speak for a half hour.  I told them how about fifteen minutes.

So this morning I dutifully awoke early, put the finishing touches on my presentation about common pronunciation errors, donned my pearls, and walked out to meet the student who invited me.  A hundred-some students awaited me in a lecture room.  I was a little nervous, knowing my preparation was far from adequate.

As soon as I got on the podium, my nerves evaporated and I spent the next fifteen minutes explaining, encouraging, and generally enjoying myself.  Chinese students at their best are the most awesome audience in the world.  They are eager, responsive, and predictable.  I always know exactly where I'll get a collective gasp or a wave of laughter.  I love to teach; they love to learn.

So I spent part of my Friday night preparing a speech.  So I woke up at 7:00 on a weekend.  So I have to do it all again at 3:00 this afternoon.  So I'm just a token foreigner. 

Who am I kidding?  I love this stuff.


  1. haha! you are so funny. love it. :-)

    good job you foreign face you.