Creating the First W@W Experience
Teacher Sze Li has recently joined the WR!TERS @ WORK teaching team. After going through fundamental training, she embarked on teaching her very first lesson. Let’s learn more about how Teacher Sze Li felt about creating her very first W@W experience for some Primary 2 students.
I’ve been teaching creative writing classes for the past two years, but for that day’s lesson I felt like I was entering an unknown territory for a battle – that was my first writing class at W@W. I recall confiding in my colleague, telling her how nervous I was while pacing up and down the corridor. To calm myself down, I sat in the classroom and stole glances at the clock, waiting for minutes to tick by. Soon, two Primary 2 boys strolled into class, with their eyes wide in wonder – who is this new teacher?
Putting on my brightest smile, I greeted them enthusiastically and introduced myself. Awkward silence hung in the air, not the response I was expecting. If it was a dance party, I was dancing alone. The boys stared at me with a quizzical look, and I felt a little shy with my bubbling excitement. Alas, the lesson had to go on, so I smiled widely and carried on with the lesson, doing everything I could to break the ice.
As we went deeper into the lesson, the boys started to warm up. Although I was a new teacher to them, I was teaching writing, and that was our common ground in that enclosed room. The lesson for that day was about a visit to the dentist, and I remembered showing them a video about Mr Bean at a dentist, which helped to spark some interest in the boys. As I proceeded to discuss ideas and throw questions at them, the once reserved kids became chirpy students – giving me all sorts of creative and sometimes, whacky ideas. The energy level in the class shot up as the boys participated actively in the brainstorming of ideas and were eager to copy down notes. It was at the point when one of them shared with me his experience at the dentist, that I realised that the wall between us had melted away.
After an hour and a half, the lesson ended and the boys handed in their writing with smiles on their faces. As I waved goodbye to them, my heart felt at ease – not only because I had successfully conducted my first lesson, but also because I had managed to build a rapport with my students. I came to realise that there was one commonality between the students in W@W and me – the love for writing. That was my first lesson at W@W.