Today was my last day of the year at the local elementary school, and because I'll be missing a day of classes next week to go to Malaysia, and I missed a day last week to go to the Mid-year conference, I went to an extra class today. I think they should always give me three classes a week -- it's a lot more fun! And, the students would benefit (I would like to think) from having me in class more than once a month.
I was reviewing the grammar patterns "I like _______", "Do you like ________?" with the Grade 1 class, and the students are asking me about what I like. All of the standards come up: Do you like apples? Do you like dinosaurs? Do you like volleyball? Do you like Ebisutani sensei (the Grade 1 teacher)? Do you like beetles? Do you like Hard Gay?
Ahhh yes, Hard Gay. My favorite Japanese television personality/comedian. Other blogs about teaching English in Japan have covered the Hard Gay phenomenon, but this is my blog, so I'll elaborate. Hard Gay is a character that runs around dressed in bondage gear -- he looks like one of the Village People -- yelling "1-2-3 Fooooo!" and humping things. Whenever I count to three, there are inevitably a couple of kids who yell "Foooo!" and shake it like a polaroid picture. His act is incredibly popular with the elementary and kindergarten students, and was also the feature of my office year-end party. I have video of the latter. Best keitai video EVER. I personally think Hard Gay is funny, probably because I don't have to understand Japanese to see the humour. And it's surreal to see him humping the grouchy old lady that judges IRON CHEF and making all of the other guests uncomfortable.
So how do you answer a question that you know will have every kid in the Grade 1 class on their feet, yelling "Foooooooo!" and humping their desks? Is there really a good way to answer a 6-year-old who asks "Do you like Hard Gay?" I went with "Well.... tokidoki. Sometimes." And moved immediately to another topic.
Full contact Alice the Camel. They really like singing Alice the Camel, but today we had to sing extra slow because there were too many casualties. And that's why I was always a fan of Alice the Camel.
Later in the day, some of the 3rd year students were going through my things and pulled out my Alice the Camel prop. She's pretty cool, if I do say so myself. Alice has gone over well at the classes I've taken her to. It's all about the multi-coloured humps. Anyways, myself, some students and one of the other teachers are chatting before I head back to the teachers room. As she is leaving the classroom, one of the students turns to us and says, "Canadian camels are a lot more colourful than other camels!"