Monday, November 22, 2010

Hong Kong 1

This is Day 8 in Hong Kong and I feel like I have been here for several weeks! It's been incredibly busy but excellent in so many ways, starting with all the great schools I have been to. Very often I do author talks, which are a lot of fun as you never know what the kids are going to ask you. One day I'll make a list of the most unusual questions.

But this time I am doing mostly writing workshops, many of which are poetry. It's been so good to see them all (even the ones who have never, ever written a poem) tackle the exercises I've been giving them, and coming out with some great poems. I've also been doing story writing with a wide range of students from Grade 5 up to Year 12. The photo above is a class of Grade 5s at the Canadian International School, all busy on their story beginnings.

Schools here in Hong Kong are multi-storey - I don't think I have been to one that is all on one level, like most Australian schools. Neither are there expansive playing fields, gardens, huge gyms, etc. There isn't room. (Above is the view from the classroom door at a school I visited last week.) One school I've been to here spanned about 15 floors down the side of the hill (lots of hills and mountains in Hong Kong), and most are at least 6-8 floors, with basketball courts on top of car parks or school buildings. But the kids adapt - one day I kept interrupting a very serious game of 'What's the time, Mr Wolf' and got frowned at!

All of my classes have wowed me with their willingness to write whatever I set them, whether it was an ususual poetry exercise or the beginning of a story. And lots of them were brave enough to read their work out, too! I hope they all keep writing and having fun with it.


Janet said...

Sounds like a wonderful teaching experience! I'd love to visit Hong Kong one day!

Lorraine said...

I like the photo of the classroom, Sherryl. It looks quite spacious. There are people working in the background. It seems that neither they nor the children are phased by each other's activities. Quite a different concept from our regular classroom. Does it feel strange to you when you're running a class?