For our first week we did a few simple exercises having to do with greetings and small talk. We also played some games including a smaller version of Scattergories. Parts of the first class didn't go the way I had hoped...I forgot that a teacher cannot sit on the floor if students sit on the couch, so when I sat down they all immediately slid to the floor. I also mispronounced one student's name and they all froze. I am still not sure what I said. They spoke Thai to each other some of the time. But some parts of tonight were great: they were laughing and feeling comfortable talking a little, they tried the banana bread we made for them, and I think they felt like we cared about them as people. I am convinced that our nursing students are the cutest women in the world.
In teaching long term goals are important. There are always things about every lesson to pull out: different wording for explanations, timing, almost anything could be better. I am learning to try to fix the small things that I can, but to be grateful when the long term goals are still in place. A few of the games or exercises might not really work, but they are still speaking English a little and getting more used to being with foreigners. I long to really know these women, to have them deeply know that we are all the same on some level.