So as regular readers will know, I’m now working as an English teacher in a kindergarten, here in Hong Kong. I recently shared what my average day looks like, and the kids follow a very regular routine every day. However, when working with kids, you learn to expect the unexpected. One of them always does something strange or funny, or something will go wrong – naturally, in a kindergarten, ‘accidents’ are regular occurrences. However, I chose to work with kids for a reason of course, mainly that I enjoy it for the most part. I teach the nursery classes though, who are 2-3 year olds, and are both adorable and challenging! I’ve been asked by other ESL teachers how I cope with them all day, as their ability is so low, but many of mine would surprise you with how good they are. And as I said, they are simply adorable! I’ve always got plenty of stories about the funny things they do, so here are some of my favourites so far (a few of these are about K1-3s as well).
I can’t take photos at school of course, so work-related posts have to have clipart I’m afraid! (source)
Ka Long is one of the best at English and will literally yell his way through the daily Bible verse, and when he’s called up to the front during singing time. Yet when I saw him at an event with his parents, he turned all shy on me, despite the fact that he goes out of his way to stare at me during playtime until I come over and say hello.
Ka Long (or Long Long as we call him) also arrived seconds before Hoi Kiu one day, and stood at the door waving and shouting hello to her, before they went upstairs together.
Ho Wan is about to steal my job, after he directed me through the whole of ‘The Wheels on the Bus’, announcing what the next verse would be each time. And whenever he gets to wear the animal headbands he bobs his head so it slides down over his eyes, then laughs away at himself. He’s also far too intelligent, addressing me by another teacher’s name when she and I had swapped seats one day, though I know he definitely knows mine!
The two above combined are even funnier, like when they bounced up to the front during singing, and when they repeat everyone’s names as I call them. They’re always the first to put their hands up, even before I’ve said what for.
Pak To insisted on sitting in a seat closer to me one lunchtime, then proceeded to chatter at me (in Canto) and played with my bracelet. He also offered me a hug one day, and says ‘Good morning’ every day, where other kids need to be prompted to do either.
Gabriel has a tendency to run across the room, and I’ve gotten the knack of catching him, especially when it’s straight towards me at the end of class – but he cuddles into my legs sometimes, and has the most adorable grin that I can’t get mad at!
Eliana and Rykiel have developed a routine where we high five at the end of class (other kids will do it when you suggest it, but these two offer their hands to me first).
Tze To regularly falls asleep during singing time, or shakes his head while his eyes move in different directions – either way it’s hilarious! Yin Ching fell asleep alongside him once too.
Rafael came up to the front to meet another teacher’s puppet one day, and promptly decided he wasn’t keen on it, and backed straight up into my legs.
Chun Ming has the cutest chubby cheeked smile ever, and was even more adorable when getting his birthday photo taken with the cake. He was also a bit wobbly on his first few days, and having a cuddle to make him feel better was ever so cute, and now he runs straight up to my lap when I call him in class.
Yu Ching seems to roll her eyes during singing, and it cracks me up every time.
Yu Kiu is the most done-with-life looking 2-year-old ever, who seems perpetually tired – but she always runs up to see me during morning playtime, just for a grin.
Cameron pulls the most hilarious scary monster faces, especially when I make eye contact with her.
Sophie went out of her way to wait for me to finish an announcement at a school event, so she could say hello and show me the picture she painted (whereas most other kids are too shy or don’t know me well enough at this stage of the year).
Stacey and I raise and lower our eyebrows at each other when we make eye contact nearly every day at lunch.
Marcel refuses to speak English when I ask him anything directly, instead grinning and looking away (far too cutely for me to get angry), but says everything perfectly when he thinks I’m not looking). He was also the best dressed 2-year-old I’ve seen at the school event, which could make sense when he’s half-French!
Bryan is a monkey, who speaks utter gibberish, and is always running away, but occasionally will reach out for me to carry him, which is pretty cute. I’ve gotten good at catching him too though. And if you take away the toys he always chooses, he lies face down doing absolutely nothing until he gets them back.
Ching Yau was staring up at our hanging decorations one day, so I picked her up to see better, and she spent a few minutes playing with them. Then she kept hold of my hand for a while once I put her down. Then Rafael wanted a turn, but I can’t go picking all of them up!
Chloe is just all-around lovely, and always smiles and waves at me, and she recently came up to me one morning just to introduce her older sister Olivia (K2), who I’ve seen but never taught or really spoken to.
Tosca dances when he’s called up during singing, which none of the others do, and it’s just hilarious.
Ho Yin is smart enough that he chooses the wrong answer on purpose – at times frustrating, at other times hilarious.
Pak Yin has a lovely habit of yelling his name at me when he puts his hand up, yet still calls me ‘Teacher’, rather than my name (which most others have learned).
When every other kid only puts away their own cushion after singing, Ho Shun will run back and forth getting the spares (from kids who leave early for buses) to help me put them away, while Yu Kiu builds a stack in the middle of the room, for me to pick up the whole lot at once.
Bonnie flopped her head into my lap in class one day, and almost fell asleep.
Rex sang / yelled his way through ‘Bingo’ with so much enthusiasm that I think he actually turned purple.
Ho Ka is nicknamed Ka Ka – funny enough when you translate into Spanish, even funnier when his teacher calls ‘Ka Ka come!’.
So there you go! Note that although I’ve just about got the hang of pronouncing their names, I rarely see them written down, so English spelling might be wrong. Anyway, some of these are really just me gushing about how cute all of them are, others had me in stitches laughing at them. Though I think they’re often funnier in person than when I recount them later, and smiles and waves don’t sound that exciting, but coming from 2 year olds they never stop being adorable. I certainly never get bored with these guys keeping me entertained anyway!