Sickness Shutdown and a Writing Restart

What started out as a normal week at Inkreadable, ended not with the celebratory shooting off of fireworks, but with a whimper of defeat. VIPKid classes were as normal. After all, I can literally teach that in my sleep. It was a lovely week for VIP kiddos that I haven’t seen in a long time. That’s the nature of VIPKid: sometimes you’ll see a kid every day for three months straight and sometimes they’ll be gone for three months after that. And then when they pop back up on your schedule you hope that the Candy that you see is the Candy with whom you have a great long distance WeChat relationship.  Not only that, but nature was bountiful as a couple of students that I hadn’t seen in almost six months also popped back up on my schedule.

Also back this week was Carlton, whose mom did not cancel. I made sure she wouldn’t however because I called her on Sunday and confirmed the appointment. After three weeks of not seeing him, Carlton’s attitude was good. He listened to me and did what I wanted him to. We focused on the handwriting and I think that is gonna take a while for him to improve. I’m not exactly a childhood development teacher nor am I an early education specialist. But I did find a whole website with resources on how to help kids learn how to use handwriting better. So I took a couple of their strategies and incorporated them into the lesson. I also passed it along to his mom as there are some helpful strategies for parents. For those of you that are interested, the link is:

https://www.teachhandwriting.co.uk/index.html

There was no Katya this week at all. I had to cancel our first lesson this time as I had an appointment and they could not meet when I needed them too. They canceled the second lesson due to too much homework. I hope it all gets back to normal next week.

All was right with my world for Felix’s class at the beginning of the week. We’re slowly but surely finishing up conditionals but interspersing it with other grammar because conditionals can be quite difficult. Felix had to cancel our Wednesday lesson because he was sick. And then on Friday, I had to cancel. I almost never cancel classes, not in real life and certainly not my VIPKid classes. The trip home from Writers Group Thursday evening started with raging wind and a rainstorm and ended in a black cab shivering. I waited for 45 minutes for a tram that never came. When I woke up on Friday morning, I could barely speak. And was super congested. What started out as minor irritating allergies for the season, developed into a full-blown I-am-super-congested cold. Since I did not want to re-expose Felix to illness, I canceled with him.

I finished the first draft of the story for the English language book to be marketed to Germany. But it turns out that my partner was envisioning a totally different book. So after a conversation with her on Thursday, I restarted the book from the perspective of a modern child. I’m finding this to be difficult. I do not remember my own relationship with my parents as a child. Losing a parent tends to cause the clock to stop and for those left behind to only focus on the good parts of the relationship. So I’m finding it very difficult to then write a story where the child has real conflict with their parents. In addition, I’m trying to figure out how to make the friendship between an anthropomorphic fox and this girl believable and something that kids are going to want to invest time in reading. We will see what happens.

Over the weekend, I met with a new friend who actually teaches English in Amsterdam. It was a really productive meeting as Maggie is a really nice person and we get along. She was able to give me some tips about my teaching resume and where to go to look for work in English language teaching here. She helped make my resume pop, with a spot of color which was unexpected. I got a few good leads, and when I stop biting my nails, I’ll start sending out my new resume.

That’s all she wrote for this Inkreadable installment. But stay tuned. As always there is more to come.

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