More MRI and Creative Collaboration

Well, dear readers, it’s not a tumor nor lupus. But that’s about all I can tell you right now. My MRI results came in and they are somewhat inconclusive. What they have found is that I have a herniated disc in my cervical spine up near the fourth and fifth vertebrae. But the doctor told me that that does not account for the sensations that I’ve been feeling. Of more interest to him, he said, was the fact that my thoracic spine, which is the long column down the back, is  swollen. The upshot is that I’m to have another MRI this time with contrast. That just means that you are injected with a die that allows the doctors to see what’s going on inside the spinal cord. So the ordeal is not over yet, but at least, it’s not a spinal tap.

In teaching news, I managed to do a couple of things this week that were quite nice. I have a new student in the center of town who I see for an hour and a half. She’s from the Philippines and her English level is near native. I’m not exactly sure why she wants English lessons, but she’s the one that I thought wanted IELTS help and I was quite happy to once again immerse myself in the exam. But, I was wrong. She wants general English help with a smattering of IELTS on the side. She is thinking to take the test when she goes back to the Philippines in the early part of next year. But what was interesting is that she also wants to qualify as an English language teacher. So it’ll be interesting to see what I can do with that. In the meantime, I did a lesson on idioms in the business world for her courtesy of Regina because I had to switch my lesson plan very quickly. You see, I had planned an hour and a half of IELTS. I didn’t mind so much because I was able to show that I could adapt and give a good lesson regardless of whether I had all the right information or not. You see the email TEC sent me was headed IELTS help and so that’s what I thought I needed to teach. Lesson learned for next time, confirm with TEC.

The next thing that happened in the teaching world was the four hour intensive that I gave on Wednesday morning. It went really well, and the time passed quickly, as I knew it would. The student is eager to learn and motivated and displays none of the arrogance of other students who think they know your language better than you do. It was also an exercise in collaboration as you know, what was interesting is that due to Regina’s organization she made a Google document where we pasted our lesson plans, letting the other teachers on the team know what we had covered. We also, by which I mean me, set up a WhatsApp group and communicated that way. It actually worked really well. I’ve discovered that I quite enjoy collaborative teaching as well as collaborative learning.

Finally, dear reader, this is the final post for October and you all know what that means. Nanowrimo is a[ upon us. While I do not think I will participate this year in nano completely, I am thinking to be a nano rebel or a nano editor and just work on my existing novel for the month. Since we are not meeting in person, we have decided that maybe we should start doing something online. I’m not sure how that’s gonna work as I have taken the weekend off starting on 30 October and going through the United States election. While we are not going anywhere, we are planning a staycation in lieu of the vacation that we had started planning six weeks ago. In addition, I think that the Netherlands will go into a stronger lockdown and so it will not be possible to travel anyway.

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

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