Well, our lovely two weeks of no teaching has finally come to close and now it’s class nearly every day for me. On Monday I started teaching the new first-year class. It’s their second semester at An Giang University, and so many of them seem incredibly shy. I suppose I would be too in their situation. A lot of them are from rural areas and now they’re at university studying a foreign language with a foreign teacher. This is the same situation that I was in last year at this time; that is, first-years in their second semester. I guess it’s my job now to help them become more self-confident and such that is required when studying another language.

Unfortunately, my American literature class has all but ended. My class will study for one more week, but that’s after the class returns from their two months of teaching practice. I don’t think I’ve ever enjoyed a class more than American lit, and I regret that the students only study for a short period of time. The way I see it, a good portion of the students here want to learn more about American culture and values, etc. And they are required to take a class called American Studies. But in my own opinion, so much of America can be seen through the literature emerging from the country. It’s on my agenda to lobby the head of the foreign language department to reduce the amount of hours required for American Studies and increase the hours for American literature. It’s more logical, at least in my mind.

The weather seems to have taken a very strange turn around here. Although it is the dry season, there have been two days of rain during the first week of the Lunar New Year. The mornings and evening seem to be quite cool and pleasant, while the afternoons seem to be incredibly hot. Perhaps the strange weather has led so this sore throat that’s been plaguing me for several days…

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