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Teaching Kindy Kids

How to make teaching kids as easy as child's play

April 01, 2010

Why read this column? Why teach Kindy Kids?

To be honest, I thought David Paul was joking when he asked me to write this column. I am more than happy to have a place to share my experience of teaching at a several kindergartens for many years. But I don’t presume to be Japan’s best Kindergarten teacher.

However, he got me thinking about how nervous I was when I stood before my first classroom of giggly 5 year olds, all of us wondering just what the new English teacher would do next. I think a few pointers from someone who’d been there would have helped me then.

So why teach kids?

A. Because you have to!

I’m sure many of you are reading this because you’ve been volunteered for “that Kindergarten class”. Well I can’t help you with your schedule, but watch this space for future updates that will make that class run smoother.

B. Because you want to!

Believe it or not, there are teachers out there who actually seem to love teaching kids. And even if you’re not in that category, and have to be dragged to your first lesson, it does get better, trust me.

Let’s face it, kinder kids are so darned cute, and once you get a handle on classroom management (watch this space), they’ll be the most motivated students you’ll ever work with. The younger the student, the bigger that moment when they get something new. It’s magic--you’ll surprise their teachers, their parents, and even yourself.

Go on, admit it--who doesn’t love to dance and sing and act like a clown sometimes. Karaoke rooms have built a whole industry on it. Now you can do it sober, and get paid for it.

C. Because it makes good business sense!

Give me a child of 5 and I will own his English education!

In time, your Kindergarten lessons will funnel students straight into your elementary level group lessons. That’s why the Eikaiwa chains are so hungry to get Kindys.

Breaking into the Kindergarten scene can be difficult, but just do a decent job, and the Kindergartens will love the personal touch that the big chains just can’t offer.

Kindergartens fill up that morning void that would otherwise be filled with homemakers and retirees, and the pay is better.

The added bonus is you’ll also save money. You can cancel that gym membership because teaching kids is a workout in itself. And you’ll find that Adidas is cheaper than Armani.


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