Monday, September 10, 2012

My First Day

I am entirely exhausted after my first day of work. That might have something to do with the fact that the airline zip-tied my luggage and I couldn't get into it to get my alarm clock and I was worried all night about not waking up on time and didn't know how to ask the Korean front desk people for a wake up call over the phone since I'd already taken my pants off and they certainly weren't getting put back on so I woke up every hour all night long, but I digress.

My day began with being picked up by the director of my school, someone who I think I will really enjoy working for. She drove me to school and helped get me set up with a "training schedule." That's in quotation marks because my training consists of
  1. Observations
  2. Writing notes about said observations in the cutest notebook ever
  3. Typing up said observations as proof that I "learned"
  4. Just teaching classes with little to no idea of what I am supposed to be doing
Only the first three really apply to my director. But I'll get to that.

First things first: my morning class. I am IN LOVE. They are kindergartners and like, the cutest, smartest things ever. At least one of them is already in love with me. I know because she gave me a hug. There's another girl in the class who reminds me of me at her age: really obnoxious, super loud, know it all. Honestly, not much has changed. I guess she reminds me of me now. They are really well-spoken and already possess a high acuity in English and did I mention I'm in love with them? Because I am.

Then I went out to lunch with my coworkers for kimbap (or gimbap, depending on who you're talking to). For those of you who don't know, kimbap is what happens when sushi and a sandwich make sweet, sweet love to each other. It's seaweed-and-rice-wrapped around egg, cooked tuna, pickle, processed ham and something else that I wasn't brave enough to ask what it was, it's full of cooked ingredients anyway, and well, it was delicious.

Next up...*groan*... we have our BEs. That stands for "Basic English." This split-class consists of first, five 1st and 2nd graders with very little English ability and second, nine very timid 3rd and 4th graders. I taught the first class, a math class, which really consisted of introducing myself and administering a test--which was STILL no easy feat. You'd think saying "Hello, my name is Samantha. No, Samanthhhha. Samanthhhhhhhh-- Just call me Sam" and throwing five tests out would be a piece of cake, right? Well, you'd be wrong. And then I observed the second class of the day, which was killer because it was a million degrees in the room and the teacher was the only one who was cold and I just wanted to sit down and I started feeling woozy. But other than that, I could tell it is going to be a difficult class because the students had a very poor understanding of English.

Finally, another split-class, but this one where I just taught the same lesson twice, which was nice. It was a science class. For the first group, a group of six girls, I got to do these terrible drawings on the board of a crab and a lobster and what should have been a horse... They laughed, at least, right? Then the next class, a group of ten (TEN) sixth-grade boys, at probably the most annoying age possible and they definitely embodied that stereotype.

And that brings me to now, exhaustion and an appreciation for how quickly elevator doors close here when you press the "close" button.


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