Friday, April 8, 2011

Deep sighs...

Teaching is hard. Co-teaching is harder. That's just how it is. I'm struggling this week with my job and I feel like blogging about it - not looking for answers, just getting something off my chest. Sometimes this blog simply exists as an outlet.

I'm not going to get specific, because there is no point, but man - this week was a struggle. It all comes down to expectations, and as much as I think I have learned in 3+ years of teaching in Korea, I can't say that it's added-up to much that I can practically apply in the Korean classroom. What I have learned is that my expectations for the involvement and investment of others are apparently far too high. I have also learned that my expectations aren't easy to adjust. I'm a stubborn man.

Yet, I wonder... is it really okay with my co-teachers to have 10% of the students show-up late? Is it permissible to have 20% of them show-up without books or pencils? Is it okay to have 75% of the class pay attention to less than 5% of what it is we do in our 45 minutes together?

It's tiring to be the bad cop all of the time, and not every lesson is going to be shits, giggles, and candy.

Middle School students are living and breathing bags of conflicting hormones and that can make for a wonderful teaching opportunity... but, add-in the ESL issue, include a seemingly system-wide apathy that, around exam time, appears to be infiltrating the students and Korean co-teachers alike, and we have a recipe for massive amounts of frustration for yours, truly.

That's what I'm feeling today. This week really brought me down, though I feel slightly better for having told you... so thanks.

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