What a fucking badass time spring is. No joke. During this time of year, my favorite time of day is definitely my walk home from work. Everyone perks up and acts more human. The students are dead happy to buzz around in crowds and chat for as long as we can walk together, the shop people are more friendly and eager to check out how much further my Korean may have come (or deteriorated, as the case may be....) and complete randoms are all around being smiley as well.
Today's last class should have been a disaster. For some reason I will never pretend to understand, our schedule lady, who I love, but who would perhaps be better suited to literally any other position, decided that since we've missed the past two Friday's classes, we should have Friday's last class three times today, so that we could be all caught up. In that class. And fall one more lesson behind in two others.
The long and the short of it is that I got to teach the last class on a Friday, the most notorious time slot in a PS schedule (rivaled only by first period on Monday, but then only barely) to a classroom full of boys who had not only already had two other English classes today, but who had also just returned inside from P.E.
They were a fascinating blend of sleepy, rowdy, bored and smelly by the time I got to them. But they did alright. And it's evidence that the stamp system is working, because there was no reason to even begin to hope that a single one of them would so much as think about attempting to finish their assignment, but they all mostly tried.
Also, this morning New HT, bless her timid little soul, got to come in to a message from the principal saying how he and the VP have been patrolling the halls and had noticed that I've been teaching without the Korean teachers in the classroom. He informed her that there was no reason for the English teachers to be off "playing" during that time. The "playing" comment was a bit of a dick move, but I know that if I were in my first year, I'd be grateful for the intervention. However, my co-teachers are not at all crappy people, and if I needed them in the classroom or had so much as hinted that I wanted them there, they would be. As it is, I feel a little bad that they got scolded. And I'm bummed that they have to now come in and stand there essentially doing nothing.
I sometimes think it would be nice to genuinely co-teach, because I think the students could really benefit from it, but the amount of extra prep time that would require from my co's makes me feel hesitant to bring it up. But at the same time, I feel a little awkward just completely leaving them out. Something I'll have to think about in the next couple of weeks. I also already know from years past that I'm going to have to probably have a chat with a couple of them about translating a little too eagerly for the students, rather than making them speak and speaking to them in English. I've got one whose classes seem to have all but gone off the rails, who has taken a sort of if-you-can't-beat-'em-join-'em approach, and she drives me a little up the wall when she's in the room, because the students know that if they talk during my lesson, they'll get shouted at, but if they're talking to a teacher, I can't very well have the same reaction. And she seems happy enough to stand there chatting away about whatever irrelevant thing they've invented to suddenly need to talk to her about.
Also, for the second time a couple of weeks ago I was offered a position as a coordinator for the foreign teachers, and for the second time it fell through due to a miscommunication. Apparently, the district supervisor misunderstood and thought I wouldn't be returning for another year. I'd love to help however I can, which is why I said yes in the first place, but I'm not altogether crushed about the lack of extra work, whatever it would have entailed. The kind of disappointing end result, however, has been that I've been asked to lecture to the new teachers instead. Which. Public speaking is not my favorite thing. In fact, it's damn near close to the bottom of the list. But I feel somewhat obligated. And it's already turning into a bit of a shit show.
All in all, what most of the bitching and moaning means is that my school year is finally back in full swing, and I'm happy. One of the biggest downsides for me in this job are the long periods of downtime. I'm happiest when I'm busy and working shit out.
And now, it's time to hop in the shower and get ready to go meet the 남친 for a movie, or whatever we decide to do after we can't agree on a movie, as usual. Tomorrow night, I'm going to see the Coffee Prince musical, because how could I not? And I may not even wear a coat.