Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Testing, testing, 1, 2, 3...

This will be a quick post because it's almost 11 p.m. and I am TIRED. But I wanted to share an experience I had today.

Last week my Spanish tutor asked if I'd be interested in helping give the oral exams at a local English Institute. Having never done anything like that before, I wasn't sure how well I'd do but was willing to try. Today was the first day and it was a "light" one with just two small classes. The director and I interviewed the students individually with me asking the questions in English and responding to their answers. (The director is my dentist's sister, by the way.) Then after the student left the room, we conferred over the different aspects of language usage: fluency, comprehension, vocabulary, and structure (there was a fifth one but do you think I can remember it right now?). Each category was worth 20 points.

All of the students are in their first year and it was interesting to see how much more nervous the adults were than the adolescents. I'm not so different after all :-) I could really empathize with their look of complete terror at the beginning and then profound relief at the end of the interview! LOL

I'll be going back tomorrow for a longer period to help test the children's classes.

Tomorrow we're also having our friends, Nestor and Graciela, over for a traditional southern meal: bar-b-que pulled pork, cornbread, cole slaw, jello salad and a pineapple upside down cake for dessert. I know I should probably be serving sweet tea, but decided to go with lemonade instead. Lemons were less than $1/lb and I couldn't resist. It's been a sweet forever since I had fresh lemonade.

I'd forgotten how long it takes to put together a meal like this. I've spent hours in the kitchen today, between preparing food and cleaning up the mess. I washed dishes three times! But I'm looking forward to sharing a little of my home culture with our friends.


Mari said...

I bet that was an interesting experience. Supper sounds good = lemonade too!

skoots1mom said...

ok, sista...how quick can the plane get me there?

you're such a wonderful hostess...you're the best!!
know you'll have fun eating and enjoying each other's company.

congrats on helping with the English classes...that's a great way to help them and you, too...

sleep tight...
BS&K and I worked out today and got to watch her granddaughter...i'll post some new pics tomorrow or the next day. she's a cutey and one of my pics is a video of her 'babbling', too cute!!

Susan D said...

Your meal sounds delicious, with all my favorites. What time is dinner? :) Blessings, SusanD

sara said...

I am sure you made them less nervous!!! But any test makes me break out in a cold sweat!

I love homemade lemonade!!

Anonymous said...

It is really kind of you to have helped them out and yes the dinner certainly sounds yummy.

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rita said...

Ah! oral exams! brings back memories of looooooooooooong days, mid or end semester, testing/conversing with students. I very much enjoyed the individual interaction but I ended up brain-exhausted!
I used an acronym RSVP and a simple grading system for each categroy. 2 was average for that level, 3 if you impressed me and excelled, 1 if deficient.
R-response x 3 (fluency & comprehension)
S-structure x 2
V-vocabulary x 1
P-pronunciation x 1
Do the math. If 21 A+; 20 A and on down.