Our students arrived yesterday and have been going through orientation. I am helping facilitate a class of thirty with another teacher, Ray. I met our students today and they are very friendly! I am looking forward to getting to know them. Our weeks will excelerate from here on out so please pray for energy for all of the teachers. The students are here for the next 20 days and every day is a jampacked schedule for them! From 7a til 10p they are busy learning and they must only speak English! Please pray for them as well! Many come from far away and many have never been to Beijing or even interacted with foreigners before! It is a nervous experience for many of them.
There are near 400 students and they come from all over China. They represent around twenty provinces. Some come from Beijing and others from hundreds of miles away. Most are teachers, the rest are university students and nearly all teach English in their schools. This session there are many students who have very good English and are looking to improve – there were not many students who scored low on their entrance interviews. This helps them understand us better of course, but this also means they expect a lot out of us as teachers! I explained to my students that I am not a teacher back home, but they are very respectful of that fact and look forward to getting to know me.
Class time begins tomorrow and while it is only a 2 hour block of time, the rest of the day the students are scheduled with all sorts of English training through various means. It is all centered around the students teaching each other and hence the English “teachers” are given the title “facilitator.” We facilitate their language learning while they actually teach each other and themselves. We are here to give them encouragment and direct their study.
I appreciate all of your prayer support. Please continue to pray for the list below and also for my health as I have been having a hard time recently with the food. I have a hard time eating much food at our meals and I will most likely lose some weight from the trip because of this. I am healthy otherwise, thank you!
Love and miss you all!