The fall semester has officially started! I’m teaching 7 freshman Oral English classes this year, all of them at the new campus. I totally forgot how exciting and overwhelming the first week of classes is, for both me and my students! I have almost 200 new faces and names to remember, and most of them have never had a foreigner teacher (waijiao).

I’m already in love with them – they have totally surprised and amazed me with their eagerness to learn and their silly jokes and sweet smiles. I know this is going to be an awesome year and I can’t wait to get to know them better.

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They have an app like Snapchat and they love it…

The first time I met with them I just had an introduction class – I told them about myself, had them pick English names and do a partner introduction activity, and then I let them ask me a lot of questions.

Some of them are very curious about how I came to teach in China and what things in China I like best, while others want to know how to improve their English skills or they are interested in American culture.  Here are some of the most popular questions I get asked.

Do You Have A Boyfriend?

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It never fails. Chinese students love LOVE. So if you have a love story they want to hear it. And if you don’t have a boyfriend they’ll graciously offer to help you find one.

What is America like?

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Many students have never talked to an American before! (Or someone from a Western country). They’re really interested in our daily lives and our pop culture. Some think we eat McDonald’s every day and we have Taylor Swift on speed dial. Others think we all have guns and it’s very dangerous. I enjoy hearing their thoughts and discussing American stereotypes with them.

Do You Like China / Can You Speak Chinese?

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Yes, I like China. No, I can’t speak much Chinese 😉

Can We Be Friends / Various Compliments?

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Some of their questions are so funny, but I seriously love their curiosity and appreciate their openness with me.

Here’s to a new semester 🙂

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Lots of love,

Rachel