If you think being an ALT in an elementary school is all fun and games, well... you’re not far from the truth!
Even though a good, fun lesson requires some lesson planning and HRT talking, building a good relationship with students outside of the classroom is all about having fun. You can build a great rapport by simply making use of your hobbies. In my case, drawing and anime. I took on a few students’ requests and drew their favorite anime characters while sneaking in some English practice in there.
They were learning English without realizing in no time! Just by tracing their favorite character’s name they could do some extra English without having to think of it as homework.
If your drawing skills are rusty, then dip into your crafting skills - interactive bulletin boards are the way to go.
Not only did I get to have fun with arts and crafts, but also got students interested in English, and a few even correcting the HRT upon saying ‘I like Shingeki no kyojin’to ‘It’s Attack on Titan in English!’. Some of them got better at writing and some of them simply became brave enough to say ‘How are you’ to me every time they pass by.
Even if you aren’t an anime lover or even remotely talented in arts or have much time on your hands - any kind of hobby can be put to good use and help your students feel more comfortable using English around you and hopefully other people, too.
What’s in it for you? Making your work environment a stress-free, fun place, and hopefully a student or two more truly enjoying English.