Probation, Farts, and Broken Electronic Devices: My First Day Ever as a Teacher
Yesterday was a big day for me. For the first time in my life, I got to work in a field that truly interests me: teaching! I was really nervous, and since I only had one week of training in Seoul, I was pretty unprepared.
To make matters worse, I was pulled aside before the class began and told that I was “on probation” for failing this one module of training we had to cover in Seoul. That definitely didn’t help to quell my nerves, and made me feel really uneasy about operating in South Korean business culture. To me “on probation” sounds so sinister. WHY ME?! But basically, what probation entails is nothing more than the Seoul trainers re-evaluating a video of me teaching in four weeks. Hopefully no big deal. And hopefully by then, they’ll pass me. If not, I get sent home.
So back to the classroom. Company X really emphasizes technology. And that’s great. Except for the fact that if one little thing goes wrong with your or a student’s tablet, then everything grinds to a screeching hault. My first class started this way, when I couldn’t login to my fucking tablet. For some reason the password wasn’t working. I was so nervous and frustrated. To make matters worse, all the little students were yelling and running wild!!!!!
Once I finally got class started, a plump little boy, let’s call him Dumpling, shouted “I HAVE TO POOOOOP!” Instead of sending him to the bathroom, I burst out laughing, and continued laughing when he disturbed the peace with several resonant farts. I was so shocked I didn’t know what to do! When I punished him later for being naughty, he told me I HATE YOU and NO YOU BE QUIET, etc etc. Basically, the whole class was trying to manage Dumpling. I really don’t know how to deal with elementary students. Oh, and one guy stole my tablet’s pen.
But the middle schoolers! I loved them! They were my second class of the day. They seemed like sweet and tender budding flowers, so smart and cute and eager. They say that some teachers just click with one age group. I wonder if I’m just a 12-14 year old kind of person.
So that was my day at the school. Then I went home and spilled water on my new tablet and broke it, overboiled ramen noodles everywhere, and spent a really really long time trying to open a bottle of Budweiser with the edge of a spoon.