Friday, 16 September 2011


Although this week has been short due to the four day weekend, it was probably what seemed like the longest and hardest week. Why? Well, a couple of things. 1) As you know, Ryan and I co-teach three 5 and 6 year olds. One boy trouble maker, one smart and motivated boy, and a very happy and smart girl from 9:50-2:30. Well, this week (and part of last week), the trouble maker was being extremely good while the smart and motivated one was saying no to everything we were supposed to do. He'd throw ropes and the troublemaker during breaks, storm in and out of the room(s) slamming the doors, and he would have temper tantrums that lasted pretty much all day. Well, yesterday, I had barely interacted with the usually good-natured boy since I tend to work better with the troublemaker than Ryan. The only time I ever spoke to him was when I said, "You need to be nice, please and listen to the teacher" and "You are a good boy, you just need to listen." Ryan and I both also told him, "If you are mad, you won't get any points. You're the only one not working." What does this have to do with anything? Apparently, this boy's mom called because he told his mom that I said he was "mad." Mad in the sense that he was mentally retarded, I guess. One of the Korean co-teachers we work with can understand English and Korean, so after pulling both of us aside to tell us the issue, she said that the mother probably looked up the word "mad" and it was a misunderstanding. What I was boggled at was not that the mother was initially upset with me, it was that the boy mentioned my name when I didn't interact with him the entire day except for those few words. It also wasn't like only I said the word mad, anyway.

I realize and admit my initial reaction of complete aggravation and frustration was a tad bit immature seeing as he's just a baby and says anything. But I just didn't like the blame at the time and I didn't want to get fired over something like this. I was aware my feelings were bad, but at the same time, I guess being in the moment I didn't care at the moment that he was a child. The kid is normally so good, and I had never seen this side of him that I forgot what his actual age was. Anyway, the teacher cleared up the misunderstanding with the mother, so that's good.

2) The good boy went back to being good and the naughty kid went back to being naughty. There were things I knew he could do but he wouldn't do it. That's the very short, less convoluted answer.

3) Today, my toughest class that I had mentioned before proved more than ever that I am going to have to really hone up my teacher skills even though I've never been taught how to teach. I actually had to raise my voice.... actually yell at all the kids several times. And I threatened to make them go out of the classroom at least a good five times. I was mentally exhausted trying to teach five kids how to do verbs. The one trouble maker in the class made it all difficult. (If he gone, they would have understood everything). Unfortunately, there's one in every classroom, right? I spent an hour and a half on a worksheet of verbs. They all know what verbs are. All they had to do was circle the verbs in the sentence and then tell me whether they were past, present, or future tense. I did sample exercises with them and knew they understood it. But, of course, the trouble maker made it so no one would pay attention (except for one girl). When I saw they weren't following simple directions on the paper, I told them exactly what to do by doing an example on board. After that, I gave up. I worked with one girl who got everything right while everyone else missed everything on the worksheet. Then, I practiced with the trouble maker on his spelling before his spelling test. He got everything correctly when he practiced with me and as soon as he took his test, he mentally checked out-- didn't even try.

Now, I'm not a real teacher and it's not my passion otherwise I would be working towards something in this field... but just because I am doing this as a temporary thing, it doesn't mean I don't care about these kids--

I take my job very seriously, and I used to want to be a teacher as a kid. I've always wanted to make a big difference in the world, which is why I wanted to be a pediatrician and a lawyer (one of which I am working on right now). I know teaching kids is something very important, so I care very much about these kids. Even if they have their wild child tendencies and drive me off the walls...

All that being said, I wanted to make the point that though I am not a real teacher, it is so frustrating to see kids not trying when I know they can answer the question because they've done it so well in previous days. Or seeing kids get their entire paper marked up in red because they are getting distracted and not following simple, simple, simple directions that I talk them through two times. When I physically do all the problems on the board, help them answer the questions-- there should be no reason for them to fail.

AHHHH! This was just one of those weeks... days I wanted to pull my hair out. I sat defeated in that classroom for a half hour as they played and yelled. I was at the end of the rope. I just know this means that although this week, this day was rough, I'll just have to better figure out how to handle myself and trouble makers. Or suck up my pride and bring in the co-teacher to have them talk to the kid(s). If I can't handle the kids, maybe she can, and we'll get the kids back on the right track.

Didn't say everything I wanted to say in this post like funny occurrences at school and whatnot, but maybe tomorrow since I'm pretty tired and I'm heading to Dongdaemun for some shopping for work clothes. *sigh* Hate spending money. lol Alrighty, that's all for now. I'll be posting again soon!

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