Tuesday, April 13, 2010

bizzy, bizzy, bizzy

I've achieved maximum teaching output, I think. I have four classes a day at the middle school, Monday through Friday. Saturdays I teach 3 kindergarten classes, plus one private lesson. Private lessons on Monday and Friday nights and kindergarten on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursdays nights. Yow!
I get Sunday off, and actually get some time off from middle school when they do their monthly tests. Plus there are always the holidays, like Tomb Cleaning Day, which happened coincidently on Easter.
I really like the kindergarten classes, because 4 and 5 year old kids have brains like sponges. The original class that started in February is now making sentences like "He is reading a book." That's a lot farther along than they get in most primary schools by grade 4.
I think the biggest problem they have in teaching in the public schools is aiming everything toward written tests. There is zero emphasis on speaking. Classes are large, so it's difficult. They also seem to think that if they throw enough words at the students they are accomplishing something. I've seen fifth grade textbooks that teaching all the Olympic sports like long jump and Greco Roman wrestling, but the kids cannot say, "I'm fine, thanks. How are you?"

The kindergarten classes are rapidly multiplying, but I am maxed out on time and there are no foreign teachers to fill any new demand. I know there are a lot of teachers in the US getting laid off. Will they be coming here?