Thursday, January 05, 2006

Back to school

Okay, enough about Thailand, at least for a little bit. Let's get back to the ever exhilerating complaints about teaching.

Korean elementary school children have close to two months off in the winter; in the summer they get about one month. During this holiday time they don't sit around playing ninetendo and reading the babysitters club like I might have done. Instead their parents load 'em up with classes: science, math, and of course, English. Maybe if they're lucky they get to go to tae kwon do and art a little more hard core than before.

Based on the staff meetings, though, I didn't expect much of a change in my classes. Maybe a few new kids would come and a few new kids would go.

Well, things have gone from not so great to pretty damn bad in my elementary school classes. Apparently I'm a well-liked teacher... ha. My Tuesday and Thursday class went from one student to six this month, and my Monday, Wednesday, Friday class went from six to eight. You might think this isn't much but every student makes a huge difference. Especially when you are stuck teaching the beginner classes so a new kid means starting from scratch trying to catch them up. There's nothing worse than a large spread in abilities and currently I have a kid who can read more difficult words like 'enjoy' and 'science' and a kid who can't even respond with a yes or no in the same class. This bites the dust.

Ah well. I guess I'm lucky that my new kindergarten girl, Alice, is pretty advanced and can keep up with the old-timers.

My kids are now officially six years old, since the first of January came and went. They're growing up before my eyes.


At January 05, 2006 10:49 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

That kinda blows. Seems like they don't do much level testing in your school. Kids of equal or near equal abilities should be all in one class and the basis for getting new students shouldn't be that you're well liked (though you being well liked ain't that surprising ;) ).

My January schedule looks like it could be insane or fun...depending on how i look at it. I have to teach three plays to my kids (in three different classes). They say the hardest thing in showbusiness is working with kids and animals. Well i'm working with kids that don't entirely understand me. It's rough i tells ya! Rough! But it could be fun.


At January 06, 2006 11:04 PM , Blogger Shells Bells said...

They put new kids with no English in your kindy so late in the year?? I would rip my hair out! At my school we are preparing for graduation and they aren't excepting new kindies until after graduation which is end of Feb. How many kids are in your kindy class? Our max per class is 12 which is what I have so no new kids...I feel badly for kids are so stressful. I seem to get all the new kids that have social or mental issues..perhaps they think I'm some sort of miracle worker (which I definitely am not!). Anywho hang in their kid hope things go better! CU Soon


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