Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The Dreaded Class

I know that this semester is only a week and a half underway, but I kind of hate my night class. It's a strong word, but I can't think of another way to put it. I literally dread going to that class every night. When I started teaching I didn't enjoy going to the night class because it was late and at that time all I could think of was going home and relaxing. But over time the students grew on me and I realized that it was a fun bunch, so even though we went until 8 p.m., it wasn't that big of a deal.

And I truly enjoyed teaching to those students. But now a different teacher has robbed me of that class and I'm left with new students. And even worse, they're beginners, so I can barely speak to them. No matter how slowly I speak, they just look at me like I have 3 eyes. The book inspires no interest and is truly boring, and the students just sit there in silence. It's a struggle to get through the 2 hours.

It took me a while to figure out how to teach to large, mid-level classes, and now I feel lost again as I start over with a small class of beginners. Going over things like greetings is just so slow and boring. Now I actually look forward to my afternoon class, which used to be the drag of the day.

The class now goes from 7-9 p.m., but I have yet to keep them until 9 p.m. It's partly because there just isn't enough material in the book to cover 2 hours for 4 days a week, and also partly because I don't want to be walking home after 9 through my neighborhood. I don't think it's too dangerous, but I'd rather already be at home by that point.

So now I need to find out how to teach to this new group of students and totally change the way I got used to. It's annoying because it takes away from the regularity that makes teaching easier. However, I can see the benefits it could have, making me more versatile in the long run. But for now, I'm not very happy with it. I still believe that in the beginner classes teachers from the area should work with the students, and the native English speakers should be used for higher levels. This way a student can pick up on the accent and pronunciation on words they already know, rather than being totally lost from the get-go.

It's not up to me, however, and I'm just going to have to put up with it for now. But it's 6 o'clock and I need to leave for the university in a half hour, and if I could be anywhere else I would. I just need to think like Dorothy and keep saying, "It's almost Friday, It's almost Friday, It's almost Friday."

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