Everyday, day in and day out, I find myself dealing with a large variety of little monkeys.. ahem.. Korean children with a wide variety of personalities. I've got the keeners, the smarty-pantses, the kids who were probably accidentally dropped as babies, and the kids who seem to make it their mission in life to get me to say their name 100 times in 40 minutes.
Of all of these the most perplexing to deal with on a daily basis is the kid who tries really hard to be good, but because they are never quiet makes it really difficult to teach your class. You're trying to teach phonics, and they're trying to tell you about the really cool movie with dinosaurs in it that they saw over the weekend. On the one hand, its great that a kid is willing to prattle on in his or her second language, and you want to encourage speaking, so you really don't want to punish the kid. On the other hand... you just can teach under a constant barrage of noise, even if its well meaning noise, and somehow, it has just got to stop.
Sometimes my little monkeys are so ingenious that the figure out ways to battle their issues without any of my involvement. A perfect example of this behaviour is this kid, I'll call him Hector. He means so so well, and because of his zest for speaking he really is at the top of the class in terms of verbal ability. Sometimes, however, I need him to stop talking, and focus on his work.
Last week, he was one of the kids with an ingenious idea.
If I had done this, it would probably boarder on child abuse, but seeing as he did it to himself, it was actually pretty cute. His eyes lit right up once he realised that his lips were stuck together and he couldn't talk...
So, with nothing else to say, he got straight to work...
... and I was free to finish teaching our class all Tom, Tom's milk, and even English phonics!