Monthly Recap: January

Here we are again at the end of another month; I don’t know about y’all, but January felt like it passed in the blink of an eye!

This is the month I officially reached having spent more days in France than I have left, which is getting harder to face with every day that passes. However, I am trying to live each day to the fullest, let loose, and be present in every moment. Even though January in France can be a bit bleak sometimes (hello, endless rain!), this month has been a good one nonetheless. I hope you enjoy my January Monthly Recap!


In the Classroom
For EJ’s classesI’ve done some small group lessons all about pronunciation, lexicon, and accents, finished up helping students talk about walls and listened to their presentations, talked to students about “Myths and Heroes” and started a lesson about bullying. Of course, I have still been helping students with eTwinning, which is a sort of pen pal exchange program that the students do with a high school in the Czech Republic. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to do a ton of work with EJ’s classes this month due to absences related to her pregnancy and being sick/fatigued, but I am hoping and praying she gets to feeling top notch here again soon, as I and her students miss her!

L’s classes have officially been dubbed my “experimental lessons time”. By this, I mean that I am doing different lessons with every group, every week to try and see what works, what doesn’t, and find the gaps in my lesson planning. Also, this helps me to think outside the box to come up with new ideas! As a result, this month I have given lessons about: interviewing their classmates to find out what they did for their Christmas vacation, MLK & “I Have a Dream”, pronunciation/lexicon/accents (a revamped and much more fun version than I gave the first time with EJ’s group), Food in the U.S.A, “Let’s Go on a Road Trip!” (ie, sites and monuments in the U.S.A),

For DL’s classes, I’ve talked with small groups about resolutions, listened to “My Dream Destination” presentations, continued working through “The Idea of Progress”, helped with a whole class as they learn about traveling, and worked through a short lesson all about ordering coffee at a restaurant. It’s been a fun month with DL!

Destinations
January started with the end of the vacances de Noël, and I rang in the New Year in Beaune, France (you can read about that vacation here). In an effort to try and save my money for the February vacation, I didn’t end up traveling anywhere else in January aside from a day trip to Avallon and my afternoon with L in Vezélay.

What I’m Reading
By some miracle, I managed to finish Harry Potter et la coupe de feu before the end of January and I have moved onto Harry Potter et l’Ordre du Phénix. I have the feeling I’m going to be cutting it close in regards to finishing the books before I leave, but I still have faith I can do it!

What I’m Listening To
Podcasts: My favorite podcast I’ve listened to in the past month would have to be the One Thing in a French Day podcasts! Given that they are the podcasts I listen to for tutoring, you best believe me when I say I have listened to plenty of them (aka, all of them published since late-October, in addition to random, archived podcasts). If you are a stronger reader than a listener, you can subscribe to her newsletter and she will send you the transcript of each episode, which you can use as stand-alone reading practice or as a guide while you listen to the podcast.

Music: I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t still hooked on the French version of Despacito by Sara’h. She has a lot of good, translated songs (and some not so good ones as well, if I’m being honest). If you’re looking for an easier one to sing along to, I LOVE her version of ‘Perfect’ by Ed Sheeran.

What I’m Watching
Y’all will be so proud: I (finally) started Stranger Things!! I am rewatching Season 1 and then I will move onto Season 2, which, fingers crossed, I will be able to say I finished watching by the February recap post.

Stranger_Things_logo

In addition to Stranger Things, I’ve been watching “The Good Place” (I’m unapologetically in love with this show), working my way through the last season of “Friends”, and Chef’s Table: France. Also this month, I watched the movie “Hitch” and “The Truman Show”, both of which I liked a lot.

Frenchy Firsts

  • I had the opportunity to visit both the Cassissium and a Moutarderie while I was staying in Beaune…if sipping cassis and tasting fancy mustard doesn’t make you feel fully burgundian (I’m not sure if that’s really what you call somebody from the Bourgogne, but we’re gonna roll with it) , I don’t know what will.
  • I made the big decision about my plans for next year. I won’t delve into my decision right here, right now, but just know that I am very at peace with it 🙂
  • I had the opportunity to watch my first French play (La peur by Stefan Zweig). Consensus: it was wonderful!

Thanks for reading my January recap and check back soon for more!

Until next time,

Michaela

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