New Semester

This is my participation semester. I’ve only made one important change to my classes, and that is basing 40% of students’ grades on participation and homework. Otherwise, my syllabus is basically the same. I will, however, be doing up a sheet that I can hand out next week, if I can enlist some help. It’s a list of things students are expected to do if they really want to learn English.

I’m working hard to keep my motivation up, to try to be idealistic and realistic about these kids. In my first class most kids seemed okay, but in the second, yesterday afternoon, there were these punks in the back… there always are, aren’t there? But the difference is, with participation more heavily weighed, the kids who screw around will hurt more, even if they do pull their socks up for the exam. When almost half your grade is from how you’re working in class, I should think people will try a little harder. At least, once they get that.

My schedule’s pretty nice: a late start on Mondays, a very heavy Tuesday, one class on Wednesday, and a few more on Thursday, finishing at 4:30. No class Fridays. Can’t complain, really.

Best get my shower and be out the door; my first class today is in half an hour.

2 thoughts on “New Semester

  1. I did that and I was fired.
    “Even though it’s a good idea, this is Korea, you can’t try to make improvements, so it has been recommended you not be re-hired”, I think is what they said to me.

    Luckily a sucky letter got me un-fired and re-hired.

    But be careful Gord, THIS IS KOREA you know…

  2. Ah, but (a) I have a two-year contract and (b) if they did fire me, for trying to make improvements, I’m not sure I would be sad about it. I can’t see my way to being all that happy working for an organization that explicitly doesn’t want quality improvements.

    And not all institutions are like that. I believed they were, but now I know they aren’t.

    Or maybe I should do like our worst teacher, and just give everyone an A.

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