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*It’s Been a Few Weeks.

Oh let’s see, as always, it’s been a while since I’ve updated this. January turned out to be a pretty eventful month. As if working two different jobs, being a full-time grad student, doing my teaching practicum, and having to move out of my apartment wasn’t enough, I also experienced running out of gas and having my wallet either lost or stolen (still not sure which). All of this happened during the first two weeks of the year, and the last two things happened within two hours of each other!

Luckily, I was able to get gas with no problem (thanks to AAA) and have pretty much taken care of canceling and replacing all of my cards, etc in my wallet. (I still need to get a new Blockbuster card and SPU ID, but neither of those are of immediate need). Also, the rest of the year since then has been much less exciting!

Work and school have been keeping me busy. I’ve officially been teaching for a year as of tomorrow, which is hard to believe! It’s true that experience is the best teacher. Everything I’ve learned in my TESOL program has been helpful, but being able to actually try out the methods and activities we discuss in class has been invaluable! I’ve definitely learned a lot (and, in my opinion, become a much better teacher) since I first started last February!

Since I came back to Seattle after Christmas I’ve been teaching my same Level 3 Intermediate class that I began with a year ago. I’ve had a fun, diverse group this year, including students from seven countries: Japan, Korea, Italy, Turkey, Kuwait, Libya, and Thailand. Tomorrow, however I’m moving to Level 4: Upper Intermediate. I’m looking forward to the change, although I’m sure a new level will present new challenges. Two of my current Level 3 students (from Turkey and Kuwait) are also moving to Level 4 tomorrow, so I’m sure it will be nice to have some familiar faces in the class.

My practicum has also been going well. I’m currently in the first phase of the two-phase practicum, which means I’m mainly observing the teachers. I do interact from time to time, acting as a teacher assistant of sorts. I’m available to answer questions and check classwork, as well as participating in discussions from time to time. As one of the students put it, they’re getting “two teachers for the price of one.”

Outside of school and work I’ve been busy doing… well, honestly, other than church, not much else. A couple of weeks ago I went skiing with two of the Italians I know here in Seattle (one former and one current student). We had a great time, but it definitely took me a while to get the hang of skiing again. (Thinking about it afterward, this was probably the first time I had gone skiing in eight or so years). I’m going skiing again in a couple of weeks with work as the “chaperone.” Hopefully I won’t embarrass myself too much!

The church I go to here in Seattle, Blue Sky, (which is actually in Bellevue and not Seattle) has been getting bigger lately. In fact, my “small” group has gotten quite big- we’ve had 17 or 18 people coming every week lately. Because we’re so big, we’re going to become two groups in a couple of weeks. Sam (the current leader) will lead one group and Mark (my former roommate Heather’s husband) will be leading the other. I’m still not sure which group I’ll be in, but I am looking forward to being in a small small group again!

Oh yeah, and for anyone interested in the status of my apartment, they finally started fixing it last Monday. I stopped by on Friday afternoon to see how repairs were coming, and was surprised to discover that the ceiling and one of the walls were completely gone! However, I was even more surprised (pleasantly surprised) when I stopped by this afternoon and found that a new ceiling and wall had already been installed, and the three holes in another wall had been patched. Hopefully this is a good sign that progress is being made and I’ll be able to get back in soon!

Alright, I think that’s everything for now; hopefully I’ll have a chance to update again soon.

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