Tuesday, September 9, 2008
The first days of school
Well all in all i really can not say that i have had a horrible first week. I didn;t have to begin teaching until thurs and my first two days went well. I have decided that i think gr. 5 is possibly the worst grade there is to teach. They have so much energy and don't yet have the self restraint the sixth graders have, but are bigger and are willing to challenge authority a little harder than younger kids are. Even that being said though, they are nothing compared to some of the middle school stories i have heard.
My main school, Seogwi Jungang Elementary, is a large school of about 330 located right next to my flat. Most of the teachers speak english and i never see the principal (which i see as a good thing). I am teaching one gr.2 class, four gr.4 classes, four gr.5 classes and five gr. 6 classes. I am also doing four hours of afterschool programs, which makes my thursdays and fridays rather long with seven classes all day, but i am beginning to think it will be better than sitting around doing nothing. As the schools won't allow us to leave before our contract hours are finished. The afterschool programs were quite a challenge. I was not prepared to be thrown in on the first day and had nothing to do with the kids. My first class was chaos with 12 gr.1&2s running around like little devils. The second consisted of three gr.3 girls who sang songs for the 40 mins. But with the afterschool program paying me an extra $20/student instead of the usual $20/hr, i definitely can not complain.
My second school, Dae jeong Seo elemetary which i just started at yesterday is very different. It is a very rural school, right on the sea about 90 mins away from Seogwipo, which makes for a very long commute. But it is a very small school with only 90 kids which is very pleasant after my other classes of 35+. The only strange thing is the very small body of teachers and administration. The principal and vice principal seem to be continuously watching me which is probably all in my head since it is such a very small school and there isn't anywhere for them to hide either. I love being greeted by the kids though and they seem much more eager to get to know me then the kids at my big school. I also get to teach all grades here which is nice, as the little ones are so cute.
I think once i get a hang of all of this madness i will kick some ass and have a blast with these crazy kids. Hopefully their little germy bodies won't make me too ill. I have been feeling a little under the weather with my immune system being attacked by all sorts of new bugs. But thank god i have lots of immune and ginger and ginseng tea. Well it is 4:35 and i can finally leave. Hooray!!!