Saturday, February 7, 2009

working life

Our life here has begun in earnest.

Last week was our first full week of work. We have a pretty nice schedule, Sunday, Monday, and Wednesday are full 8-hour days (7 of those hours are teaching, one is lunch). Thursday we work 3 hours and we work 4 hours every-other Tuesday. And the sweet thing about Tuesdays is that there are no classes, we just use the time for a staff meeting (about 15 minutes) and the rest is for prep-time. Then we have Fridays and Saturdays off! Every day starts at 1:30pm, which is kind of nice, but on the long days we don't finish up until after 9:00 so that's kind of a bummer.

The job is pretty good, I don't think its something either of us would want to do as a career, but I think we have a good gig here. One thing that's bad about it though is that pretty much every hour of work (besides on Tuesday) is a teaching hour. So, the days can feel very long and some of the classes can take a lot out of you. It is definitely menally exhausting to teach english for 7 hours in one day.

There are both positives and negatives about the job (as with any job). On the plus side, we have complete freedom with what we do during our teaching time, and they are very small classes. Every class is a self-contained 45 minute lesson. The clients sign a contract, for example they may sign a one year contract for 100 classes, and then they can come as often as they want and whenever they want. So we never really know who we'll see. The clients are broken into 6 different levels of ability and every consultant teaches every level according to the need on any given day. So each day we're teaching different people in different levels every hour.

One of the things Nick really doesn't like about the job is that we aren't teaching the same group of people every day, so there isn't very much continuity to it. We miss out on reaping the rewards of teaching and watching our students progress on a daily basis. As he put it "it takes all of the good things out of teaching."

At the beginning of every class, there is a period when we have to kind of figure out where people are and what will work best for them. As time goes on, I'm sure that we will get to know our clients and have a better idea of where each one is, but you never know who you will have in any given class until 15 minutes before it starts, so it's a bit difficult in that respect.

I do like the job, and’s a job, and it's getting us a visa, so this is good.

Tonight is the end of the year party for the company, so Nick and I had to buy some clothes to wear to it (it's a formal event). It sounds like it could be a good time and hopefully we'll get to know our colleagues and maybe form some friendships tonight... we'll see.

Anyway time to get ready for the party!

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