Teaching can really be a thankless job sometimes. Wait. What am I saying? That's not right. Teaching is a thankless job all of the time. I haven't been teaching for long in the scheme of things so I'm not constantly bitter about it yet, in fact most days I don't really care, I like my job so I don't need people thanking me for doing it. There's a reason why teachers talk about moments when students approach them and tell them they appreciate all the hard work - they are rare moments. I've had a few and they've been lovely. I keep them stored in my memory to pull out when I'm having a rough class. I had such a lesson this afternoon.
Due to the way my school works, the students studying English subjects have already sat their final exams despite having a month left of school. They've finished the work in their textbooks and apparently thought the last month was going to be a holiday. It's a challenge to keep up motivation when they're not working towards any official grade. I get that, it seems like work for the sake of work. They're not at the stage where they want to learn just for knowledge.
I decided to create a project where they can choose from a list of varied tasks (computer stuff, art, music, writing, speaking etc.) which are all worth a different amount of points. I spent aaages putting this bloody list together. Sitting there alone in the office after school thinking ' Now, if I were sixteen, and I had to do a task for English, what would I want to do if sleeping and watching films were out of the question?'. I've gotten to know these students pretty well over the last two months and I tried to cater to their interests.
How did they react? Screwed up faces. Groans. Complaints "Oh but we have exams for Vietnamese this month" and "this is too much work" and "but we've finished". SULK SULK SULK. It's not fair. Lots of epic sighs. Before they'd even read the tasks.
Oh no, my poor babies, you have to make a poster...or write a short story....or compile some inspirational quotes....or write a list of goals.....or make a powerpoint on fashion. YOU POOR SOULS! Ugh, I was so mad. What made it worse is that it is a class which I generally get along really well with. They're good-natured and intelligent kids. They just thought it would be easier to take advantage of me. That is the downside to being a friendly teacher. Sometimes they forget that you are not their friend.
Such a small thing, I know, but it has put me in quite a foul mood. I'm wondering whether to even post this. Ah, what the hell. If you think it's boring you've probably already stopped reading anyhow.
There is some crazy lightening going on outside and I am waiting for the nachos I ordered 45 minutes ago. It'll probably start pouring down and my food will arrive soaking wet...and then the power will go out.
To brighten up this teaching post I will...nope, I've got nothing.