Posted by: sjuniperj | October 24, 2012

A Teacher Walks into a Bar…

English: Detail from frontispiece to Thomas Wi...

There will be waltzing!!! I can only hope someone will invite me to dance.

pulls out paper for her students to make name tags, and orders a beer.

This actually just happened!!! It was amazing. In Graz, my only complaint is that I don’t see my students enough (cue all of them going ‘awwww’). It’s true. I’m not used to having such little time with each of my classes, or not having my own real classes at all. However, my quasi-adult status as a Language Assistant means that I’m not a ‘real’ teacher, or even a ‘Praktikantin’ (first-year teacher). It’s still a little uncomfortable for me to get used to the idea of with hanging out with students socially, but to be fair, they told me that if I was a ‘real Teacher’, they probably wouldn’t hang out with me either!

Thus, the English Club had its first successful meeting. This was particularly remarkable because last week no one showed up at all, but this week I had six students from two schools, which is pretty much perfect for talking in noisy places. Not all of my students are old enough to drink, and not all feel comfortable in bars, but tonight we settled down for a chat and brew together. Since it is legal to buy beer at sixteen, most of my upper classes are old enough to drink. Tonight I told them about prom and dating and they told me about their favorite words in dialect, what music is cool, and what pictures they have of America. I am so delighted to get to know them better, and relieved that they assured me they’ll try to find non-awkward dance partners for me at the upcoming Matura Ball, the Austria version of Prom. I definitely don’t want to wallflower, and they’ve warned me to stay away from the teacher room, where everyone stands with their back to the wall, middle school style.

Never in a thousand years would I have imagined that I’d have language class in a bar, consider dancing with students, or be this excited to do extra work outside of school.


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