Thursday, February 2, 2017

Everything is Awesome

January has been an awesome month for my Waldorf doll shop. My doll sales on Etsy have finally picked up again. I am so happy that I found homes for two of my big dolls. It is hard to let go of my babies but I am happy they have been adopted by a new family.



I also had a super month teaching. I love teaching German to 6th graders. It is hard to believe how one year can make such a difference. It appears that by 7th grade almost half the students suffer from severe "hormone poisoning" and cannot focus. One does not want to generalize - but it does seem that sixth grade students have much more respect for their teachers and have a residual sweetness about them lacking in the average 7th grade student.

Just a few days ago, I had a great teaching moment, when I happened to have my back turned away from the class. I hardly ever wanted to turn my back last  year. As I was writing on the board, I heard a child say:" I love German class. I wish I could take it all year." That comment sure made my day.

Teaching foreign languages in the US is definitely a tall order. Many people don't seem to believe in the need of learning another language to begin with. A few people might actually see a need for Spanish because there are so many Spanish-speaking immigrants. But German? Why would you need that?

So we make lists of the whys and what-fors. The kids really like the idea of having a secret language to mystify their siblings. They also love the discovery of cognates. Why they had never thought that they already knew German and that is was so closely related to English. And as they are having lots of fun playing games they don't even know that they are learning stuff...

The weird thing about being a teacher in the US is having the watchful eyes of administrators on you. Just picture the Eye of Sauron. While I was growing up in Germany I never saw the principal come into the classroom to check if our teacher was doing a good job. Once you have been trained and have your teaching degree there are no tests or watchful eyes. Please, correct me if I am wrong.

Anyway, I find those "tests" very stressful and kind of scary. But I am sure that in the end it is beneficial, and this process may be helpful in weeding out teachers that are not very good at their job. But who knows. Well, I passed my "teaching test" this month with flying colors. So a little round of applause for this old lady rookie seems to be in order here!




Sunday, January 8, 2017

Feeling Inspired

I have been wanting to the see the movie Life of Pi forever. It's probably old hat to you if you are into movies. If not, you must see this movie. January is always such a hard month for me. It is dark and cold. In fact super cold right now. We had temperatures around negative 24 Celsius over here. You open the door and feel like your face is going to fall off. Then you realize you have to go out there and shovel snow. Brrr.

Anyway. I finally got to see the Pi movie. I suppose if I had to sum up in one word what it is about I would say: Hope. Yes, a perfect movie about that topic. So if you are feeling down and sad, see that movie!

Image result for life of pi

Another good thing happened yesterday. I found a home for one of my little Waldorf doll babies. It is always such a joy and blessing when somebody adopts one of my babies. I was getting a little worried about this little freckled redhead. He is such a fine fellow. Well-behaved and quiet. Not sure why it took so long to find him a good home. I know redheads are a minority. Some folks are downright prejudiced against them. It is sad to me when I see kids in the classroom being discriminated against because of the color of their hair. Why? I don't get it. When I see red hair I get envious. Who wants to grow up with boring brown or dishwater blond hair?


So please, be kind to people. And love them for who they are. Red hair, brown hair, dishwater blonde, or gray. I am turning gray. Please, don't discriminate against me because I am getting old!

And here are some great quotes from that movie:

"I had to stop hoping so much that a ship would rescue me. I should not count on outside help. Survival had to start with me. In my experience, a castaway's worst mistake is to hope too much and do too little. Survival starts by paying attention to what is close at hand and immediate. To look out with idle hope is tantamount to dreaming one's life away."http://www.shmoop.com/life-of-pi/spirituality-quotes-2.html

“I suppose in the end, the whole of life becomes an act of letting go, but what always hurts the most is not taking a moment to say goodbye.” Yann Martel

I think I will have to read some of Yann Martel's books now.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Happy New Year, Waldorf doll friends!

Yup. I am still here making dolls. Still teaching German and I love both of my jobs.
I totally abandoned blogging last year. I guess it is hard to find time and words these days. Like I have no words for what happened in politics and with the elections in the US. Just choking when I think of it.

I guess the best part about 2016 was that I got to go home and visit my family in Germany. There were lots of hugs and tears during the most fabulous of family reunions. And I got to visit my friends and "family" in Berlin. Lucky me!


Wishing all of you, my doll friends a Happy 2017. May you have health and happiness! I will try and find more words this year. Maybe even write something in German once in a while...