One Week Down

First things first, here’s the pictures from my first couple days at Kid’s College: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=3017034&id=12437843&l=e01cb48529

Sorry about the delay. I know I said they’d be up Tuesday, but I’ve been pretty busy this week. I’ve had them on Facebook for awhile, and I think most of the people reading saw them there, but now anyone can see them.

Anyway, I’ve made it through my first full week. I feel accomplished. The new job definitely has a lot more work involved than I had at Buldang. Still, it’s a lot better in pretty much every way. Though, lunch leaves a little to be desired. Light in the meat area. Still, other than that, pretty much everything is better. I may be working more, but I enjoy it more, too. That’s not to say I didn’t have fun inside the classroom and enjoy the students at Buldang, but the out of class drama and stress really overwhelmed the good parts of the job.

I’m hopefully starting to get my routine down. The first couple days the morning before class was a little hectic trying to figure out what I was teaching and what resources to use and all that, but it’s getting better. It helps that I made a weekly plan for next week. Well, you’re supposed to every week, but since it was my first week they didn’t really make me. Now I’ll have at least a pretty good idea of what I’m teaching each day, and I can always change it if I don’t feel like doing it.

I counted today, and I only have 24 students all week. I could have that much in just two of my nine classes at Buldang. And I thought that I had it good there only having 120 students a week. I know people with 30+ kids in every class and 400+ students. It’s a really great, small environment. I like being able to really spend a lot of time with my students. I’ve definitely already formed a pretty close bond with some students, particularly in my kindergarten.

If you look at the pics, you can see who I’m talking about. Kate is just the most adorable thing in the world. She’s normally pretty quiet, but very sharp, particularly with written work, which is usually the hardest part for a young kid. She’s also a hugger. She’ll just come up and hug me. And she’ll do it as long as you let her. You don’ t don’t have to hug her back or talk to her. She just wants to hug you. So adorable.

Seoa is one of the funniest little girls. Sometimes it’s a little hard to get her motivated, particularly with writing work, but she’s a regular chatterbox. She loves talking and her reading and talking ability is through the roof. She’s got a great sense of humor.

Mia is sharp as a tack. She often corrects other kids’ grammar mistakes when they’re speaking. She’s also really cute and generally finishes all her work really well without being constantly pestered to complete it.

Rachel is a bit of a chore. She’s extremely unmotivated. Her speaking is okay, but reading and writing is way behind. She joined the class late, so she’s a bit behind other students and she doesn’t really seem to enjoy being there. She constantly asks to go to the bathroom or go get water just to get out of doing stuff, and it’s nearly impossible for her to finish work in the allotted time because if you don’t stand over her, she’ll just stare off into nothingness or doodle. She’s also a bit of a whiner. I think she’s used to getting her way at home.

Alex is a little maniac. He loves to scream and go crazy and fight. He’s smart, but a bit rambunctious. I don’t mind that much though. He still finishes if you give him enough incentive. He’s a funny guy though, so we get along. He’s also a talker.

Yeongkwang is attached at the hip to Alex, but he’s a little more low key. He might be the quietest kid behind Kate, so I don’t know him super well yet. I know one thing: If you ask him about Transformers, he will educate you at length. He goes nuts for Transformers, so that’s a good way to get him into a conversation.

Today, class was good. I like my Friday schedule. I have Show and Tell first, then Language Arts (good because it has a books), Phonics (another book class), Story Time, and Journal. I was afraid no kids would bring anything for Show and Tell, even though I reminded them like 20 times yesterday, but everybody brought something. Yeongkwang of course brought his Optimus Prime toy. Seoa brought like a bag full of yellow things (the theme was bring something your favorite color). Language Arts isn’t exactly exciting, but for some reason with that book most of the students stay fairly on target.

Phonics is less popular with the kids, but today after a couple pages, we played Bingo with some of their phonics words, so that kept them interested in Phonics. Story Time, I just read some books and the last ten minutes was bullshit. The last class of the day is only 25 minutes, and actually really 20 minutes because my co-teacher Julia comes in early to get them ready to leave, so I didn’t even do anything for Journal. Literally nothing. There’s nothing you can do with 5 year olds that they can finish in 20 minutes.

In my first elementary class, we’ve been working one the numbers 1-10 all week. They know how to say them well enough, but they can’t write or spell them (with the exception of one kid) so like 40 minutes of each 80 minute class has been spent on spelling 1-10 and games using spelling. Today we played Bingo and Hangman for awhile. Bingo was 30 minutes itself, because they’d never played Bingo before, had no idea how to fill in a sheet, and some of them didn’t get when I said to color “four” that it meant all the sheets with a four and just started coloring all the squares.

The second half of class we just did classroom words. I wrote them on the board, but I didn’t bother making the kids write them. I just want them to speak and hear them. Next week they get their phonics books (fingers crossed), so after that we’re really gonna be focusing on reading and phonics. In that class, I my co-teacher’s daughter. She’s extremely quiet, but also very bright. I kind of wasn’t expecting that. Not to be mean, but some kids look dumb. Way to beat the odds, kid.

My last class is all 5-6th graders with high level English. I always start with 10-15 minutes of conversation, then work until the break in their grammar books. After words, we finish whatever we haven’t done, then end with more conversation. I’m starting to do vocab words with them that I want them to know. But not bullshit like random verbs or shit they don’t care about. I teach them lots of words I know they want to know. Or the words I use to make fun of them, so they can use them to make fun of each other. Today’s words: pervert, flirt, beggar, and cannibal. Pervert and flirt came up because two boys kept fighting over a phone, so I asked if one was a pervert, then told them to stop flirting. Beggar because one kid was laying on the floor. Cannibal because one made a joke about eating someone else.

Anyway, I don’t have a lot planned this weekend. Hopefully I’ll get more rest than last weekend. There’s a Mardi Gras/birthday party at Dolce, so I’ll definitely be there. Other than that, I have no plans. Just gonna play Saturday by ear. Might stay in Cheonan and keep it quiet.

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