Any teacher will tell you the first week of school is draining. No matter how prepared and experienced you are getting used to a new schedule, learning new names and really figuring out what you want to do with a new crop of students takes a lot out of you. Things are going well, but I listen to my students and think, “Oh, dear, they’ve been learning English since they were 10 and this is how far they’ve gotten.” Or “I wonder what he’s trying to say? Is the talking about school or soup?”
I’ve got a decent schedule for teaching 24 hours a week. I’ll teach 6 hours on Monday and Wednesday and may need to be carried home those days. Tuesday I have a long morning break from 9:50 to 2pm. This week I was able to get into town and back to run some errands. Thursday I’m blessed with a free afternoon and Friday I don’t have to start till 10. Not bad.
Today I got a kind of bonus. After 2nd period ended, I ran over to the administrative office to order some copies. When I returned, I expected to see my 3rd period students. No one was there. Though class wouldn’t start for another 10 minutes in China that’s odd. I waited and waited. The bell rang and still no one was there. I called the Foreign Affairs Liaison and she said she’d look into this. Eventually, I got a call from a student with poor English. I really didn’t know what he said, but I figured there was a scheduling error. Maybe they were double booked.
In time a girl came in with a paper in Chinese that she showed me as a way to explain the problem. I really don’t get how she thought I’d be able to read it. From day one, I make it clear that I don’t speak Chinese. I guess that hasn’t sunk in. In time another student with poor English joined the girl. It seems the students’ schedule showed them as free during this period. Since some were off campus it was impossible to round everyone up.
I was glad that they weren’t somehow double booked and say in Chinese at that time, which might mean I’d have to teach Thursday afternoon. That free afternoon is rather precious. All seems well (fingers crossed) and next week we’ll hold class as my schedule shows. The pair wondered if we should make up class on Friday evening. I said that shouldn’t be necessary and if need be we’ll figure out a make up time. As I see it, it wasn’t my mistake and I was ready to go. Over the course of the semester we’re sure to cover all we need to. Down the road we can see about a make up but I think we can just let this go.
- Disgraceful 1 (wagamama7.wordpress.com)
- I Shouldn’t be Surprised (smkelly8.wordpress.com)
- A proud teacher (365daysofwritingclw.wordpress.com)
- Learning to teach English and Teaching English (gettingtoknowtheworld.com)
- Serenity Now! (breakingthelanguagebarrier.wordpress.com)
- Teaching. Me gusta. Quien sabia? (roamingtheworld.wordpress.com)