otherwise you spend two classes out of four watching “Pig Demon”….. I am actually too scared to even google this film, but the basic premis seemed to be a group of Chinese zombies chasing…..yup, a pig demon.  I’m actually just a little bit worried that a 17 year old girl won’t be able to sleep tonight….the first class that chose the film started randomly from the middle, the second class decided to watch from the beginning and even I’m now haunted by images of people being turned into pigs and killed by people.

My idea in theory was a good one – I’d taught these four classes on Wednesday, why not let them have a bit of fun and listen to music or watch a film.  What I hadn’t anticipated was that there is no internet access in the classrooms!!  First class was fine, the class computer had music and video clips on it, so we had a kareoke-style class of Justin Beiber, Michael Jackson, and random cartoons.  Second class there was nothing on the pc….thank God for a student having a USB with the lovely pig film on it.  In fairness the students seems to LOVE it, even laughing when a zombie slaughted a pig – at this stage I didn’t really think that the film was toooooo violent as there were some nice scenes in it.

Class 3 – a total disaster.  This was the class on Wednesday that I’d let sleep.  Nothing on the PC, and only a young lad with a USB with things on it – Chinese rap music, Chinese in-line skating videos accompanied by Michael Jackson… I really did resort to pointing at songs and asking where the singer came from.  I apologised as much as I could, but I’ve a feeling this class won’t forget this lesson – those of them that were awake anyway.

Class 4 – same issue, nothing on the computer, but again a student saves the day.  film starts, and I think “wow I recognise that guy….”.  We’re talking about an 18 rated killer zombie sort of film, with talk of being gay and a few love scenes, not exactly what I want my teenage students to be sitting watching.  I was standing there thinking how the hell can I get out of this one, trying to watch the students to see if any of them were watching through their hands or showing any sign or distress.

I ended up having to ask them whether they were happy to continue watching – the whole class just screamed “yes!”.  Pig Demon, highly recommend it, it’s the most attentive my students have been in four weeks!  However a hard lesson was learnt – don’t rely on the students or the school for your lessons, ALWAYS plan and be prepared.  On the plus side I’ve now expanded my knowledge of Chinese pop music and will never be able to look at a pig without thinking of that film.

Round Two of the farsical English speaking competition is on tomorrow after classes, so at 6pm I went up to Class 4 as two of the students had asked me to check over what they are speaking.  Both scripts were fine, and I got the pleasure of two moon cakes in exchange for my help 🙂 

It’s weird the things the students notice though… as I was sitting talking to a group of them, one of the boys came up and commented on my eyes – I get this a lot as Chinese don’t see blue-eyed people very often and I have to wear mascara as my eyelashes are pure blonde.  However this guy actually commented on the fact that I had “black stuff” on my eyes….again trying to explain the theory of mascara to a 17 year old boy isn’t something I’d ever anticipated.

So a tough but “I got through it” day.  All four classes were warned that they won’t be sitting watching videos again during a class, this was purel a one-off because I had taught them two days ago.  I hope however that they can see that I’m a nice person that is just trying to help them. 

Tomorrow – nothing until 4.35 when I go to judge the English competition again, so a morning in bed with coffee is planned.  Monday I have one class in the morning then have to try and brave the bus station to book a ticket for Tuesday to Xi’an, but one of the Chinese English speaking teachers has said she will come with me.  I really can’t wait to go to Xi’an, not just for the nice comfy hostel bed and pillows, but also being able to sit in Starbucks or Subway and people just not stare at me.  It’s been a hard four weeks, emotionally because I got sick and homesick, but also physically as I’m not used to standing or walking around classrooms, nor shouting so loudly at students!