Posts Tagged ‘boredom’

Back to School

2012年 9月 5日

School has started up again, but I won’t teach any classes until Friday. This can be the most boring time of the year when it seems that work has started but it really hasn’t. I am feeling a little anxiety about Friday because it will be open house. Nobody is ever certain who might show up to watch on those days and the students are probably still in summer vacation mindset.

Adding to the stress this year is the lack of preparation meetings. Real teachers were given extra time off this summer, so while I was sitting in empty school offices to not burn my remaining holidays, the teachers were off enjoying themselves and we couldn’t meet up to discuss how to approach the second term.

With all that time away from work, you would think there were lots of stories to tell; but, almost without exception, teachers here feel an aversion to ever admitting they were not busy or – worse yet – they enjoyed themselves. Asking about the holidays always nets some answer filled with vaguaries and mumbles which generally ends in whining about some professional development meeting they had one day.

Along with the new term, I will be turning a new leaf and trying to post more regularly again. Lots has been going on, including some travel, some learning, and some personal development.

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Excitement Among the Mundane

2009年 9月 2日

Before the term gets into full swing there aren’t many things for the Assistant Language Teachers to do. Of course we can prepare for classes, but there’s only so much of that to be done. Many ALTs over the years have complained about how they are just ignored but still expected to sit for 7 hours and 45 minutes being ‘busy’.

At my Wednesday school they have decided to take advantage of one of my skills and it has brought a little variety and excitement to what could have been a mundane day. Technically I am licensed to teach Japanese calligraphy to elementary and younger ages. One teacher who has been assigned the task of grading the childrens’ works finds it a bit laborious, so she has enlisted my aid.

Today we wrestled with which student from each grade created the best piece of calligraphy. A tough point in grading young students is that each work will include some positive points and, inevitably, some not yet developed points. So, whose weak points override their strong points and whose are vice versa is the critical factor. Rather than let it traumatize me, I had fun stretching out my creative fingers which have been cramped by recent traumatic events.

Most important point of the day: don’t read the names until after judging.