About a month ago I posted about my daughter attending Chinese school on Sundays. Since the concept was so new the parents did stay in the room with children for the two hour duration of each class. I alternated between lassoing her into paying attention and trying to find the best place to hide the snacks so they would last until break time. Last semester was a pilot program for the Chinese community running this class for mostly Chinese children with English speaking parents. Most parents are Caucasian but there is a smattering of biracial or 2nd/3rd generation Asian parents who speak English solely in the home. Admittedly, as Americans (and mostly type A hyper sensitive adoptive types) we are sort of high maintenance for the Chinese Community Center so I am trying not to freak out over each little thing that is not perfect. Hmmm. Imagine me, in the back, the only parent not freaking out that little Sophia's feelings might be hurt since she was not selected student of the week. Whatever.
This semester it has been decided that the children will stay in the classroom with Lao Shi Ying, their teacher, all alone. I think the parents were sort of stressing her out. Here is where it got interesting yesterday. Eighteen kids showed up this semester. I heard through the grapevine and my kid spent the entire two hours crawling under her desk taking her sneakers on and off. And when that became boring she decided to rally up her girls and have them do the same. We searched for 10 minutes for the left shoe upon leaving.
What was I doing while the wilds rumpus'd? Why, relaxing in the newly created adult learning class next door of course. We spent two hours learning the exact pronunciation of Ni Hao with correct tonal inflection. Two whole hours. At least I got to use my perfect pronunciation at the Golden Crown's lunch buffet today.
This is my 4th attempt at jump starting Mandarin learning. With Ava's inability to stick her little bum down to that seat and my aches and fits about first through 4th tones...it could be a long semester.